E-learning is beyond question becoming increasingly important in both corporate and education sector. A good way to think about it is that people are thirsty for knowledge, have less time, want to have everything within arm’s reach (or better said within a touchpad’s reach) and don’t put up with any restrictions (geographic or time). The model of online learning is pretty straightforward – learning completely delivered online that allows you to learn from virtually any place, at any time and molding it around your lifestyle.
Whether you are in a corporate or education sector, integrating e-learning means being a step ahead of your competition who still uses traditional approaches.
E-learning in a corporate sector is vital especially if you are in an industry where you have to keep up to date with the newest technologies and where an industry is constantly changing and developing. It is often a low cost solution and gives employees greater flexibility. On the other hand, universities globally are already embracing e-learning as an integral part of their programs. These online platforms are redefining the traditional education sector as we know it – no ifs, ands, or buts about it. Education is becoming more accessible, engaging and some would say more fun. This surely caters Millennials and generations after who are used to doing most of the tasks with the click of a mouse.
There are numerous benefits to utilizing e-learning both in corporate and education sector and the growing appeal of this approach is simple to justify, however there are some key differences between e-learning in these two sectors.
The main distinguishing characteristic of e-learning in the corporate sector is that it is specific job related. Employees are trained for tasks in their job description and this usually has clear practical significance for the company. Employees are taught practical skills and transferred knowledge that they need for being up to the task in their everyday activities.
Another characteristic is that in the corporate sector the usual concern is with the timeframe in which the training is delivered. Corporations are thirsty for fast and effective learning and are eager to equip their employees with an adequate skills and knowledge in order to get the ROI (return on investment) as quickly as possible.
Yet another important trait is that e-learning ultimately has a function to benefit both the company and the employee. An employee is obtaining new skills, and on the other side of the coin, the company is benefiting from motivated and more skillful employee.
The bottom line is that e-learning in the corporate sector is specifically about the corporation and its needs.
While in the corporate sector we mostly talked about obtaining job specific skills and training, in education sector e-learning is mostly dealing with comprehensive knowledge sharing. The focus is on theoretical knowledge and not training, while particular skills might or might not be obtained. Students most often have the chance to complete the particular course or study program through e-learning to get the recognition from the educational institution that otherwise they would not be able to attend.
Another obvious difference is time. While in corporate sector everything is fast-paced, in education sector the whole process of e-learning is much more time-consuming. The focus is on the theory and time will be needed to complete and get a certificate for a particular area of study.
On the concluding note, e-learning had provided convenience and flexibility. It is here to stay. It is hard to talk about replacing the traditional approaches but rather about complementing them and making learning process more accessible and attractive.