GeoLearning: Mid-Sized Companies Rapidly Adopting E-Learning

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During the past decade, most large companies and government agencies around the world have deployed an e-learning solution of some sort. In GeoLearning’s case, more than 500 customers have found the on-demand delivery model to be a cost-effective and resource-efficient way to deploy enterprise learning and training.

Recently GeoLearning has found that small and mid-size businesses (SMBs) are joining the e-learning revolution in rapid succession. The streamlined approach to e-learning offered by software as service makes assessing, delivering and measuring training as common and critical to SMBs as they are to large enterprises. In fact, research by Bersin & Associates shows that approximately 20 percent of e-learning expenditures now come from companies with fewer than 1,000 employees, and the percentage is growing.

From a strategic perspective, e-learning capabilities have become necessary for SMBs to compete in global markets. It is a necessity to address the challenges of training widely dispersed employees, business partners and customers that are also diverse in terms of the work they do, their IT experience, and their educational background. Similar to their big company counterparts, SMBs can now consider a multi-stage approach to e-learning, starting with their own employees and then extending to their partners and customers. In fact, SMBs actually may have a competitive advantage over larger organizations when it comes to entering the world of e-learning. Consider these points:

  • Many SMBs have little or no legacy e-learning technology when compared with large organizations. SMBs can essentially leapfrog directly to the forefront of e-learning technology.
  • SMBs are in an ideal position to keep pace and even lap their larger competitors by using software-as-a-service learning and performance technology without incurring “debt” from behind-the-firewall technology investments.
  • SMBs actually may get even greater benefit from software-as-a-service value propositions such as simplicity, speed, cost-effectiveness and knowledge/service.

E-Learning Often Starts With Compliance
Sixteen states have laws and regulations requiring or encouraging sexual harassment prevention training. For example, in California, employers with at least 50 employees must provide supervisors with two hours of interactive harassment awareness training every two years. Consequently, SMBs have turned to e-learning to educate employees about legal requirements in the workplace.

“We find that compliance is often the catalyst motivating SMBs to get started with e-learning,” said Frank Russell, president and CEO of GeoLearning. “Emerging organizations find success with compliance training and then they expand their learning strategy to focus on organizational goals and employee performance.”

SMB Courseware Needs

Common e-learning coursework for SMBs includes compliance and certifications, desktop computer applications, interpersonal skills and sales techniques. Rollouts of new products and services, customer service practices and company messaging — notoriously hard to control during rapid growth — are also good candidates for customized e-learning. An e-learning vendor such as GeoLearning supplies the course templates and guidance, and the company’s trainers provide the content. 

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