There has been a paradigm shift in the approach of businesses towards the learning and training of employees. There has been a move from the regular and mundane classroom techniques, to the fresh and modern methods of eLearning which is now used to create a more conducive learning experience with custom elearning content development.
There is often a dilemma that is faced by Learning and Development managers due to the increased demand to roll out learning courses online. The question that they are confronted with is whether to purchase a learning course that is available off-the-shelf or to develop customized learning content that is specific to their needs.
Custom content development and off-the-shelf training can each fulfil certain business needs due to their own set of advantages. However, it is important to determine which solution would work best for your training needs and which would integrate well with your business.
An off-the-shelf course refers to an official course outline which is delivered as if it was originally prescribed to be taught by a certain trainer. It is affordable as it is readily available and is pre-loaded with a plethora of features. These courses do lack flexibility as they can’t be tailor made to suit the needs of a business, which therein makes it difficult to integrate the course with other technologies.
Off-the-shelf courses is often most suitable for training where the content is universal. Individuals preparing for an exam or certification which requires more generic information or content would benefit better from off-the-shelf courses.
Universal content — When the content is universal in nature and is more generic in comparison to specific training programs or software, off the shelf training would work best. Courses can be rolled out on more general topics such as negotiation, team building, compliance training, and the like which cover all relevant topics and is informative instead of spending excess money and time on customizing the content.
Urgency in requirement — When the requirement is immediate and is urgent, off-the-shelf courses work well as they are readily available for upload on a Learning Management System.
Affordability — Off-the-shelf courses are an affordable option as they are ready made and don’t require investment of any additional resources. Costs involved are relatively low as the development cost is distributed among many users.
Custom content development or customized courses provide an opportunity to modify, add, remove, or alter any content to a particular course outline to suit it best to the needs of a business.
Custom content would be the best choice when a business rolls out new versions of a software and wants its employees to get well versed with the latest features.
Distinct training requirements — Custom content development is apt when there is a requirement for specific training needs. Not only is there a good amount of control over the content you want, there is also increased workflow and reduced wastage of time and money.
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