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Companies “Struggle” with E-Learning


The majority of organisations find it difficult to implement e-learning within their training and development initiatives, according to research from Ashridge business school.

The research, "E-learning: the Findings and the Future", indicated that while 86% of organisations believed e-learning is an effective training approach, 82% said it was difficult to introduce into an organisation.

The main barriers to e-learning were technology problems, lack of time for training, underestimation of resources required and resistance of staff to engage in e-learning as well as a negative image of e-learning, often created by suppliers.

Despite this, the research shows that in the right conditions, many organisations were using e-learning effectively.

Common success factors included:
· Cultural change about how training and learning happened and was delivered.
· E-learning closely aligned to the needs to the business.
· E-learning 'blended' with other types of training.
· Learning driving the technology rather than the other way around.
· Senior level support and effective marketing throughout the organisation.

"The initial wild enthusiasm for e-learning has given way to a much more cautious approach," said Andrew Ettinger, Director of Learning Resources at Ashridge and co-author of the research.

"E-learning… can be highly effective, but only when implemented properly as part of an overall learning process.

"A slower pace of development for e-learning should be welcomed, as it should give organisations the time to focus on what really matters, the creation of an organisational environment that truly values learning."

* E-learning: the Findings and the Future was based on detailed interviews with a variety of organisations including the BBC, Lloyds TSB, Ministry of Defence and Xerox Europe, as well as on a quantitative survey of corporate subscribers to the Ashridge Virtual Learning Resource Centre (VLRC).


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