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5 Best Practices for Custom E-Learning Content Development In Workforce

  • Published on: July 11, 2024
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  • Updated on: July 11, 2024
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  • Reading Time: 6 mins
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Authored By:

Sudeep Banerjee

SVP, Workforce Solutions

For L&D, creating effective content is a complex task due to the diversity and specificity of organizational needs. From training programs to skill development and compliance training to change management,  the scope is vast. For this, there are an increasing number of practices that successful L&D should be

doing – whether using multimedia, employing a mix of virtual and eLearning, or conducting assessments and gathering feedback.

While there are several general practices for content development, the best practices for custom eLearning content development consider how to apply them and integrate them to tailor individual learning processes.

 

Identifying and Addressing Content Development Challenges

Understanding Metrics and Identifying Gaps

Organizations rarely operate with identical structures or employee profiles, making standard content and metrics insufficient for measuring performance. So how does one differentiate relevant content from the good? Moreover, it can be challenging to know where employees lack and areas to prioritize. The first step is to uncover metrics causing the lag in performance. Once identified, L&D can work on replacing them with relevant content that drives performance and overall productivity.

 A multiracial group of employees learning about the best practices for custom e-learning content development.

Recognizing Inefficiencies

It’s much easier to continue with the content developed and established by the company but recognizing and addressing skill gaps is crucial. For this, the L&D needs to constantly upgrade its content. Part of this upgrade means tracing the skills back to the module and understanding how roles evolve.

For example, traditional sales personnel training focussed on transactional selling and limited use of technology. However, the nature of sales is changing as customer touchpoints become more dynamic.

Nowadays, it takes lead nurturing to take it to the closing stage, meaning sales reps need to maintain long-term relationships with customers. Moreover, training on leveraging social media platforms and analytics has become central to thriving in a highly competitive environment. By redesigning content and distributing it effectively, L&D can put employees back on track.

Whether you are onboarding new employees or implementing significant organizational changes, these eLearning best practices will support smooth transitions and foster long-term success.

1. Enhancing Inclusiveness With Accessible Digital Learning Content

As per the latest US Bureau of Labor Statistics, only about 40% of people with disabilities in the US are employed. This means that chances are that if you are an L&D professional, it is highly likely that you have persons with both visible and invisible disabilities working within your organization. Additionally, the workforce is multi-generational, making diversity and inclusion crucial. Prioritizing these aspects not only enhances collaboration and productivity but also showcases the organization’s dedication to equity and learning excellence. However many organizations see accessibility initiatives as a cost center. Here’s a cue: what benefits the community of people with disabilities, benefits everyone. Data reveals that companies with inclusion practices tend to outperform their competitors in terms of profitability. As L&D professionals your concern should be to ask: Do training programs ensure access for all, or are we unintentionally excluding certain groups?

This involves designing digital learning content to accommodate diverse needs, including accessible formats and technologies. By using closed captions, color contrast features, alternative formats like text-to-speech, device compatibility integrations, and other accessibility principles, L&D can create inclusive learning platforms accessible to all the professionals in the organization. Moreover, such features also assist employees without any disabilities. Think of an employee who wants to access video training in a public space and has no headphones. He can continue learning through the text transcripts or the closed captioning feature.

2. Combating Information Overload With Bite-Sized Custom Online Courses

Often, learning is treated as a one-time event. Think of the Tuesday training or Wednesday webinar. But as any employee would say, retrofitting those learnings in everyday life is a rare instance that barely results in effective translation. When it comes to creating content modules the key is to infuse micro pieces of information from the start. When you make micro-learning a priority from day one, you not only create a better learning experience for all employees but also ensure assistance at the right place and time. For instance, a microlearning module on email communication can break the content into: the email structure, examples, quizzes, etc delivering training in a focused and concise manner as well as ensuring that employees can refer to it quickly when needed.

Creating micro-learning modules is an exercise rooted in content authoring. It involves understanding the learning objectives and key messages, gaining subject matter expertise, formatting the content in a visually appealing manner, designing with accessibility in mind, and leveraging custom technology to host and track vital metrics for refinement. For many L&Ds, this is a prompt to evaluate how well their learning platforms are at creating and distributing high-quality micro-learning content.

3. Addressing Individual Learning Needs With AI-Powered Personalization

By leveraging AI in the learning platform, L&D can nurture unique abilities, and increase productivity and employee engagement. Moreover, as employees increasingly demand personalized learning for career development, getting AI integration right is crucial for engaging and workforce retention.

Building on the example of email communication modules, employees could receive targeted suggestions on related topics such as managing email overload or improving email etiquette. However, this is just one facet of a broader transformation facilitated by AI.

Companies can empower their learning ecosystems with AI-driven capabilities that provide real-time feedback tailored to individual learning needs. Imagine an AI learning assistant capable of analyzing drafts of emails, offering constructive feedback, and directing employees to relevant training material for improvement. Through natural language processing, the AI can assess learner feedback, preferences, and performance data, enabling adaptive learning paths and personalized content recommendations. This integration enhances learning effectiveness and supports continuous skill development aligned with organizational goals.

4. Improving Engagement Through High-Powered Interactive Training

For forward-thinking L&D departments, prioritizing high-quality interactions in learning is more than a nice-to-have tool – it is essential for talent development and one of the best practices for custom e-learning content development. With a wealth of opportunities to explore immersive learning, L&D teams that overlook integrating interactive training are missing out on unlocking the full innovative potential of their workforce. Numerous studies highlight how AR, VR, and XR can enrich learning experiences by cultivating problem-solving skills and intensifying the impact of learning content. By embedding VR for interactive job simulations and AR for real-time guidance, L&D departments can truly optimize the employees’ learning experience.

Technical implementation of interactive training begins with a comprehensive needs assessment, where organizations define specific learning objectives and assess the technological infrastructure required. Working closely with subject matter experts, instructional designers then translate content into engaging formats such as simulations, branching scenarios, and gamified activities. Lastly, integration with learning management systems (LMS) or content management systems (CMS) facilitates content deployment and efficient learner progress tracking.

A multi-ethnic group of instructional designers evaluating the best practices for custom e-learning content development.

5. Resource Optimization By Repurposing Legacy Content With AI

One of the best practices for custom eLearning content development is to leverage AI for content repurposing. This approach can reduce development costs and time-to-market for new training programs. Moreover automated processes and efficient reuse of existing resources, free up resources for more strategic tasks. AI-powered tools can distill information from existing training materials, identifying key concepts, learning objectives, and reusable assets such as text, images, and videos. This analysis helps restructure and adapt content to fit new learning formats or delivery methods and eliminates the need to start from scratch.

Furthermore, AI can enrich existing content with interactive elements such as simulations, virtual reality (VR), or augmented reality (AR) experiences. These immersive technologies make learning more engaging and effective, especially for complex or technical subjects.

 

Written By:

Sudeep Banerjee

SVP, Workforce Solutions

A future-focused and experienced executive offering more than 20+ years of experience serving as a tactical partner to globally recognized corporations—helping businesses reach next-level success by tapping into the power of human capital and technology effciency. Championed multi-faceted Edtech, Learning & Development (L&D) transformations, workforce solutions, AI-driven training, and learning automation. Leading with vision, strategy, design, and execution for corporations with large and complex ecosystems. Spearheaded enterprise growth with adept at leading high-performing teams, driving business growth, and delivering excellence in client service.

FAQs

Identifying relevant content involves understanding organizational metrics and performance gaps. By focusing on replacing outdated content with materials that address specific needs, L&D can drive performance effectively.

Digital learning content can be made inclusive by incorporating accessibility features like closed captions, text-to-speech, and device compatibility. These enhancements ensure that training materials are accessible to all employees, including those with disabilities.

Microlearning offers benefits such as delivering focused, concise training modules that employees can easily access and apply. By prioritizing microlearning from the start, organizations support continuous learning and quick reference needs among employees.

AI-driven personalization enhances learning experiences by analyzing learner data and providing tailored content recommendations. This approach not only increases engagement but also supports continuous skill development aligned with organizational goals.

AI facilitates the repurposing of existing training content by automating the identification of reusable assets and adapting them for new formats or delivery methods. This process reduces development time and costs while enhancing the effectiveness of training programs through innovative content reuse.

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