The rapid increase in the number of corporate learners and the increasing diversity of learning needs has helped e-learning to truly find its feet. Virtual training helps transcend geographical distances and varying time-schedules and so it is available to everyone across the organization. Rich in media, virtual training’s have shown excellent results by connecting with the learner and leaving lasting impressions. This explains the industry-wide acceptance of online or virtual training and the phenomenal increase in the demand for it.
But sometimes there arises the need for more specific training. These training’s are also called stand-alone or need-based training’s. They are targeted at specific groups and often have distinct learning objectives.
- Product Trainings: Typically aimed at helping learners gain knowledge of a new product and how it works. They can also be used to train people on the newer features or uses of an existing product.
- Sales Trainings: For aligning learners towards sales targets or building a strategic focus on attaining results. These often include skills training.
- Compliance Training: To train the workforce as per the required norms and regulations. These trainings are often continuous and ongoing.
When and Why do we need stand-alone trainings?
For one, understanding the need for training within an organization is crucial. Some training courses can be pre-empted and planned for. Some keep emerging from time to time and are event-based – like product trainings. Training needs also emerge out of feedback or evaluations. So, when the need for training is in flux, stand-alone courses are often the perfect solution.
Also, training needs are sometimes urgent and have to be met right-away. To build a training module into the existing training structure is time-consuming. For such needs too, stand-alone trainings are the answer.
Designing and Deployment through an External Third Party: Is that an option for you?
Some organizations prefer designing and deploying their trainings in-house and for good reasons – they do understand their training needs best, they know their audience, and it also takes care of security concerns. But, in spite of this, many organizations opt to develop and deploy stand-alone courses through external sources. For one, it frees their internal training staff, who can then channelize their capabilities to catering to the training needs of the organization as a whole, and not just a few specific needs. These courses work very well when the training need is within a group or department of an organization, and when the training wing within the organization is not equipped to address the need in an express manner.
In addition, there are other reasons for preferring third-party intervention.
- One reason is the number of approvals required and the number of security channels that need to be encountered in accessing corporate learning platforms. Usually, only a handful of people within the organization have the rights to access or upload training within the existing learning platform. The material to be uploaded also has to go through various screenings and approvals. Of course, these channels are in place for a particular reason – to ensure the security of data. IT policies are also put in place to ensure the security of the organization’s knowledge. But nevertheless, this creates a barrier for the continuous flow of training. In this scenario, a third party is often approached to develop as well as host the training module, independent of the existing learning platform within the organization.
- Some organizations prefer to approach a third party to deploy stand-alone trainings because they do not have the platform to the host trainings to the intended audience. This is especially true of small or medium organizations, which are in their growing phase and cannot invest huge amounts to develop learning platforms.
- For organizations that have the existing infrastructure, the problem is one of reaching out to each and every learner. Corporate structure does not allow everybody full access to the internal learning platform, on account of security. Smaller branch offices or partner organizations thus get left out. To reach out to them, a stand-alone training course, developed and deployed by a third party, is an easy and effective solution.
- Post deployment, providing support is necessary, but sometimes it becomes a challenge to find available resources for support within the organization. An external third party may solve this problem too, by providing support in addition to designing and/or deploying the course.
e-Learning is part of the corporate world now and organizations are fast realizing the worth of focused trainings for all their employees. Within the corporate learning structure, stand-alone training courses have their own place. If your training needs are divergent and have to be delivered within restrictive timelines, third-party intervention should make a lot of sense!