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Custom E-Learning Solutions complete guide

There’s never been a better time to incorporate an custom eLearning solutions into your business. Coronavirus has not only kept people away from workplaces and schools in the short term, it has quite likely shifted the way we work forever. Many businesses are not going back to having their entire team in the office. Some have dispensed with the office altogether.

The move to work, study, and train remotely is well underway.

Which is why creating a custom e-Learning Content Solution is such a powerful tool for communicating your message straight into people’s homes, whether it’s an online course for customers or students, or an upskilling module for your staff.

A custom e-learning solution allows you to create clear and effective communication, with online modules or entire courses that your employees, colleagues, and students can access and work through. Anytime, anywhere. And it saves you money!

The e-learning industry is enjoying extraordinary growth as people catch on to its limitless possibilities.

What are the Pros and Cons of e-Learning Solutions?

The PROS of custom e-Learning solutions

  1. Custom e-Learning Solutions opens up your market.

Australia is a big country, and it’s increasingly common to have employees, customers and students login to work or learn from not only just all over the country, but all over the world. Having an e-learning content solution as part of your business proposition opens up your market immensely, allowing you to project your course or message nationally and even internationally.

  1. They are FAST.

Not only can the course be delivered and begun within minutes, but participants can learn as quickly as they like. You’ll find that many learners will tear through the course materials, in a way that cannot happen if you are sending them to monthly (or yearly) seminars! Data indicates that e-learning trains people 25-60% faster than traditional learning.

  1. They are cost-effective.

Building an e-learning content solutions cuts down dramatically on your training costs over time. By not needing to hire instructors repeatedly, pay for venue hire and catering for training days, or paying staff travel costs to conferences, you’ll save a great deal of money over time. You will pay some set up costs, of course, and hosting costs if you use an external platform, but the costs really do pay for themselves.

  1. They can be so much fun!!

E-Learning solutions can be designed to be engaging, entertaining, and of course, educational! Depending on the level of customization you choose, you can make them wonderfully interactive, with quizzes and gamification, and you can have them beautifully designed with beautiful artwork and animation, so the participants don’t feel like learning is a chore. There are plenty of easy e-learning templates these days, and new software makes basic animation a cinch.

  1. When you create custom e-Learning solutions, you are in control of the message.

You’re not just paying for a generic course-maybe attending a conference or seminar with a bunch of other businesses. With a custom e-learning solution, you can tailor the learning right to your staff, customers, or students. If the information changes, it is easy to update it- unlike old training manuals sitting in desk drawers!

  1. They can be accessed anytime.

As anyone who has ever tried to teach a class of teenagers will know, it’s not always easy to get people in the mood for learning. The beauty of e-learning is that that it can be accessed anytime, anywhere. Meaning your staff can work on their training in quiet times that suit the business, and students can work on it at their own pace, rather than on a bleary-eyed Monday morning.

The CONS of e-Learning

What are the drawbacks of e-learning content solutions?

  1. Some people are not tech savvy.

Some of your learners will not be particularly computer literate. So that’s something you will need to build into your e-learning solution so that you can walk your learners through the process. These  are very easy to navigate once you start!

  1. Some people prefer face-to-face learning.

Some people like to be able to ask questions immediately, and get immediate answers. So you’ll need to have some way of answering queries, preferably in real time.

  1. Some people struggle with the motivation with e-learning.

This is a common problem with e-learning, but in truth, many of your learners also struggle with motivation in a classroom! What works for some people, does not work for others. You can limit this downside by building a really interesting course with gamification and great design. Break down the course into small parts so people are rewarding by finishing modules regularly, and make sure you get data on finish rates and get participants to check in regularly.

What’s the Difference Between Online Learning and eLearning solutions?

For many people, these are considered the same thing, and in truth, there is a great deal of overlap between e-Learning and online learning.

What is online learning? Let’s take a common example. Students who did home learning during lockdowns were engaged in online learning. They logged in to platforms together over the internet, having face-to-face interactions on platforms such as Zoom. They used online tools for learning, such as an online curriculum, and virtual conferencing software.

What is e-learning and how does it differ from online learning?

E-learning uses digital tools, but while there can be ‘live’ interactive sessions like webinars and conferences incorporated into the courses, learners can work on the materials at their own pace rather than being logged in simultaneously.

Types and Costs of Different custom e-Learning Content Solutions

So, you’ve decided you need an e-learning content development solution as part of your business strategy. Good move. Next step is deciding how ‘custom’ do you want it to be?

What is an LMS?

A learning Management System (LMS) is the platform the e-learning courses exist within. The LMS is the place where the courses live, collects the data on its users, and manages their learning.

You have a choice.

  1. Do you want to build an e-learning content solution from scratch? Example, Moodle.
  2. Do you want to ‘White Label’ your e-learning content system?
  3. Or are you happy to outsource, and allow your learning courses to be hosted by an external software platform, such as Udemy or Teachable?
  4. Perhaps you’d like to outsource, but to an all-in-one platform, with some extra features.

Let’s go into greater detail, beginning with outsourcing options and working up to the extra features of white label and ‘from scratch’ LMS options.

‘Start-Up LMS’

Platforms like Udemy and Teachable are the cheapest option. They charge a set fee and they become your LMS- all you have to do is upload or create your course in their platform.

You are one of many courses that they host within their LMS.

The Start Up LMS option exists for people who are trying to sell courses to a wide audience online. They are a place where anyone can pay a fee, set up a course and start selling right away.

The Cons to the Start Up LMS

You have to tell everyone you are using their platform.

You are restricted to the features that the chosen platform offers. You’ll have to give  the LMS access to all your users’ data.

Often you are required to sell on through their payment gateway.

Start Up Options – Udemdy – Teachable – Thinkrific – Teachery

COST: The price point is from around $50usd per month to $500usd per month

‘All in one’

These eLearning platforms offer extra features.

The All in one LMS takes care of everything from your email list, setting up funnels, and even hosting webinars.

They often have a  marketplace for you to sell your courses on.

Don’t charge any transaction fees unlike Udemy, Skillshare, and Teachable.

With The All-In-One option, you only pay your monthly or annual fee and that is it.

COST: $300 per month to 800p/m. Also, options that are per user – $15 to $30 per user.

All in one platforms – Kajabi – Learn Worlds – Podia – Litmos

White Label

Software that’s developed by one company, but sold under your brand.

You can easily transform an existing LMS into an extension of your brand.

By choosing a white label LMS, you will benefit from a wide selection of features, like gamification, multimedia, live and recorded webinars, branching learning paths, multilingual options, and mobile compatibility features for iOS and Android.

Many of these white label LMS options are the only LMS that don’t have course creation tools. This is done on purpose, as to give the course creators additional options to choose the look and feel of their learning. However, it comes at an additional cost.

You’ll still get rich data, without needing the time or skills to interpret it. An established LMS offers visual summaries and interpretive reports on time tracking, completion rates, engagement, assessment performance and more.

Cost – $1000 p/m – $1800 p/m

Content Creator – $2000 – $3300 per year

LMS -Docebo – Absorb – Talent LMS

Content Creator Articulate Storyline 2 – Adobe Captivate 9 – Trivantis Lectora 16

Moodle Platform (Built from Scratch)

100% created and owned by your business.

Moodle is the platform of choice for higher education institutions and online learning organizations, worldwide. Institutions including the United Nations, Monash University, The University of Melbourne and World Vision all use this eLearning platform.

Moodle is open source. Not only is Moodle free to download making it a cost effective solution, any Moodle user can look at the core code and access the HQ’s back end. This provides complete transparency and allows data-driven decisions to be made to enhance how the LMS is built, used and functions.

Moodle is modular by nature. Put simply, this means the core product can be extended with customizations and plugins to fit the learners’, educators’ or organizations’ specific needs.

  • Online and offline learning modes using mobile and desktop apps
  • Collaborative learning spaces, such as forums, wikis, polls and surveys
  • Online grading, assessment management and grade moderation
  • Online exams and assessment tools
  • Highly customizable user and administrative interface
  • In-built Integrations with existing software such as Office 365, G Suite, Xero and NextCloud
  • In-built analytics on user engagement, course completions, compliance etc.
  • Highly developed training and on-boarding resources

COSTS: Content Creator – $2000 – $3300 per year

Confused about which E-Learning LMS to Choose? Let us Help!

Clearshot Media in Brisbane has experience building both fully custom eLearning solutions and hosting e-courses on existing platforms. If you want to discuss your options, please get in touch.

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We at Infinity Soft Systems provides digital transformation and product engineering services to large enterprises, consumer internet, and ISVs across the globe.

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