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  • Harri Candy

How to know if your online content library is working for you

With the new tax year fast approaching you’ll be looking at your budget and wondering how much value you’re really getting out of your off-the-shelf eLearning library. The 200+ titles you’ve been using for the last year may have ticked a box on your stake holder’s checklist but did they actually deliver the engagement and learning transfer you were looking for in your learners? And if not, why not?


The answer to this question isn’t always easy but there are some key factors you can analyse to get a feel for how well your library of online content is working for you.


1. Which are your most used courses?


A simple report from your LMS can tell you which courses people are accessing the most and if they are completing them or not. It will come as no surprise to know that mandatory courses, compliance courses and courses or resources linked to a company-wide awareness campaign will come out on top, but if these are the only courses people are electing to complete, do you even need a large library? Could you save money by purchasing a smaller library or making your own version of the most used content?


2. How curious are you learners?

Even if your usage data spikes around mandatory modules this can be helpful if you look at what your learners do next. Do they just complete the mandated training then exit or do they browse related content? Maybe they also look at another couple of modules or resources? This will tell your population are engaging worth the system and what is has to offer or just accessing it when they absolutely have to.


3. How committed are your learners?

Once the mandatory courses are out of the way how many other courses do your learners choose to complete. They may access quite a few but give up after a few minutes in each one, this could suggest time pressures or could even mean that your content just doesn’t appeal. You’ll need to complete further analysis to find the root cause of this issue. If your learners don’t have time to learn it wont matter how many courses you put in front of them of how good they are, you still won’t get your return in investment. And if the course quality is letting you down you risk the reputation of both your LMS and your learning expertise.


4. How well does your content match your people?

You might instinctively know the answer to this one: if you have a large suite if IT online courses but most of your learner population spend their working day cooking, cleaning or serving customers at a till for example there is a good chance the content doesn’t speak to them. This is where matching content to competencies matrices is really useful, but if you’re not at that stage in your organisation why not send out a quick survey to your learners to see if they think the content is right for them. If the content doesn’t align to people’s roles or outside of work interests you’re not going to get much traction. If you work in an industry where the skills are often omitted from content libraries you might want to consider switching some of your investment into bespoke eLearning development instead to make sure the content reflects your industry, your policies and your learners.


5. How much support do you get from the provider?

Finally, when things go wrong, how much support does your content library provider give you to resolve matters in a time frame that keeps you, your stakeholders and your learners happy? Do you have to wait weeks to be told that the confusing course navigation or failure to mark as “complete" is by design or has to be sent elsewhere to be fixed? Remember broken or sub-par courses and resources can cause irreparable damage to your LMS' reputation and turn people off to the idea of eLearning altogether. Some providers may provide marketing materials such as mini course trailers or promotional email templates or 5min crib sheets. Are you using these to peak your learners' interest or just hoping the module title and description in your LMS is enough?


We hope these pointers help guide you in figuring out if your content library is working for you and give you some ideas of what to try if it isn’t. After all the library subscription likely presents a large part of your online learning budget so you want to know its money well spent.


If you’re looking at your course catalogue and the learning data and feeling a little overwhelmed feel free to get in touch and we can work with you to understand what your learner behaviour is telling you about your content library.

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