Organizational Readiness for eLearning – What is Involved?

Determining your Organization's Readiness to Launch an eLearning Program is Critical!

Is your organization ready to launch an e-learning initiative? This is a great question and it should be answered long before you purchase a delivery system or start building online courses. If you’re providing training and development for educational opportunities, and you’re not providing them through technology and the Internet you have lots to do to adapt your content for online delivery. The software systems and skills required to move into online learning will consume considerable resources. And like launching any complex initiative, the risk of failure is very high. Taking this quick course on Organizational Readiness will give your team a feel for where you stand in your journey and exactly what you need to do to become successful.

Plenty of research has been conducted concerning e-learning readiness within a number of business sectors including higher education, government, nonprofits, and others. There are research models and instruments for gauging eLearning readiness dating back a decade or more. I’ll run through a few of them right now, so you have an idea on the complexities of launching an eLearning initiative.

  • The E live model considered people, technology, finance, strategy, IT systems, legal, the market, and the product which in this case would be e-learning content.
  • The STOPE method includes strategy, technology, organization, people, and the environment.
  • Chapnic created a model which included psychological and sociological aspects, environmental concerns, human resources, financial readiness, technological skill, equipment, and content readiness.
  • Psycharis included only resources, education and environment
  • Shreurs listed facilities and infrastructure, management, the organization of departments, and e-learning content.
  • Rogers was more complicated with four categories including technology, innovation, people, and self-development – but each of these categories had to be assessed in terms of: resources, skills, and attitudes
  • The McKinsey consulting 7-S evaluation has endured for decades and is used to evaluate readiness for a number of high risk/high reward initiatives. The Ss are: style, skills, systems, structures, staff, strategy and shared values.
  • Finally, Haney listed 7 categories and provided a list of 10 questions for each resulting in 70 questions your organization should answer. Her categories are human resources, learning management system, learners, content, vendor, information technology and finance. She also said that 70 questions were far too few, and most organizations should ask thousands of questions before considering launching an eLearning program.

If you are confused, you are not alone. CenterPointe in conducting research on organizational readiness and we are looking for professionals with eLearning program development experience to participate in a 30-minute interview. You will also have the opportunity to enroll in the Organizational Readiness for eLearning course – free sponsored by ASAE Foundation. The information we gather will help you determine where you are now and what you need to do to get to the next level with your eLearning program. We will start and end the course with the learner because in the end analysis, transfer of knowledge is the key ingredient in any learning program. You will need to determine how to best move that critical knowledge into the mind of your learners through the use of technology.

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