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IT Learning Strategy

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We are looking at implementing a solution to go beyond classroom based IT training. Whilst there will be an element of classroom training (certainly at the start) the idea is to develop a culture of self-help in relation to education rather than just 'being trained'. Essentially this will be about offering a blended solution that is tailored to the specific needs and learning styles of staff.

Part of the strategy document is to compare what we want to do with what other organisations are doing.

I would be grateful to anyone willing to share what they do - thanks.
Clare Gibson

5 Responses

  1. Courses, Books, Qualifications!
    We currently offer staff on-line IT training, the option of off-site classroom based IT training and also the Information Technology Qualification (ITQ) which came out in August 04. With my last employer we included the IT “… For Dummies” books in the Learning Resource Centre, in addition to classroom based coursed and the ECDL, we also tried “IT Champions” – a group of volunteers willing to help out anyone with an IT problem.
    Hope this is useful.

  2. Role-Based Road Maps
    The most useful thing that we have done recently is to map out what we expect our teams to be able to do with their PCS.

    The important thing here is that this list is different for every individual user group and includes generic MS Office and role-specific functions.

    We have then developed a system that test individuals abilities to perform these tasks. Based on these results we use a number of different learning solutions to meet the needs. These solutions include E-Learning, Trainer-led, software simulations, user guides & Regional Champions.

    We stress to our Regional Champions that they should be demonstrating best practice using the tools previously mentioned.

    What we have found that in some areas we have formalised who the RCs are, whilst in other areas this has taken a more informal approach. Both work well depending the make-up of the group.

  3. What we are doing….
    Is a totally blended approach. Either myself or the line manager sits down with the employee and establishes the types of need (either MS Office or company specific) and how best we can satisfy it be that classroom, e-learning (via learndirect has been very successful) we have a system called Centra which allows employees across the globe to join a trainer led session on their own pc, right down to one to one coaching and self study using books and cd rom.

    hope this helps

  4. When I was IT Learning Manager…
    Hi Clare and all,

    Until about 4 months ago I was IT Learning Manager at DLA Piper, world’s 3rd largest law firm. (I’m now a partner at The Fourth Level, the training professional’s secret).

    IT Training magazine wrote an article about me, or rather my IT Learning strategies, called ‘The Technology Doctor’ – we won some awards and the like which brought me to the mag’s attention. You can read it here if you’re interested: http://www.thefourthlevel.com/local%20files/publicity/John%20Salt%20-%20the%20technology%20doctor.pdf

    No matter what set of solutions you decide to implement Clare I’d urge you to make implementing *post*-learning evaluation a priority: as much as 80% of IT learning goes to waste and the only way to ensure that you actually help people to change and achieve new results is to make those results measurable. (Remind me to tell you about my disastrous Spreadsheets for Solicitors project sometime…)

    I think Parkin has written some articles around here about evaluation, and I’d be happy to share my ‘value for time’ evaluation concept if you fancy a telephone discussion.

    On the topic of encouraging self-help, you might want to consider whether your solutions encourage dependancy or help people learn-to-learn. Most trainers and elearning lead learners around by the nose: the problem with that is that people learn, whilst not learning-to-learn technology. So the learners become dependant upon the training/elearning for further assistance, rather than becoming truly IT liteate (which to me is the ability to think about technology and work out how to use it to achieve a problem. Or something like that). On that front I’d urge you to study the difference between behaviourism and constructivism: most training/elearning is based on the former, and that’s where we get the ‘leading learners around by the nose’ problems from.

    Hope that helps Clare, best of luck,
    John Salt

  5. Me too!
    Hi Clare,
    We are undertaking the same exercise at the moment, trying to increase our offering of training beyond classroom based learning. Like one of the respondents below, we too are trying to map out what skills certain job roles need to have in order to tailor training and support to them. Additionally with the help of an e-learning tool we are writing software simulations and courses and putting our help documentation on-line and hopefully making this available context sensitively.
    I don’t have much else to add on top of the other useful contributions but if you would like to touch base with someone else who is doing the same thing then feel free to email me
    Kind regards,
    Jenny

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