Last updated: 11.11.11

Simple e-learning platforms 'often work best for businesses'

Businesses using online resources to train their new staff should not become fixated on new technology when it comes to e-learning, according to one expert.

Commenting on the challenges companies will face when branching out into online education, a spokesman from suggested that sometimes the simple methods of providing information work best.

The website offers a free information resource about e-learning and learning technologies and is on hand to give advice to businesses and learning providers about the best ways to handle advanced technological options when setting up a course structure.

David Patterson, director and consultant with, said: "Sadly, we come across too many flawed learning projects we have to rescue, so start with performance in mind. Write down what changes you require and how you measure them - we do this using a balanced scorecard. Assess your learner's skills and attitudes."

He added that companies should look to clean and low complexity systems whereby the learner can easily access the required information and find the parts they need in a short time.

If the learner becomes too engrossed in trying to locate the right section of information or takes time attempting to access applications, visuals and video demonstrations, the effect of quick and easy learning is reduced, according to Mr Patterson.

Instead, he suggested that companies using e-learning should find the best style of technology and software to suit their needs and assess whether the more hi-tech versions of interactive learning would be worthwhile to the person using the materials.

"Not every situation will need a wonderful animation or simulation - it may actually get in the way of what the learner needs to know," he commented.

In a previous interview, Mr Patterson said that mobile-learning will grow in usage, popularity and importance by unlocking the learning potential of devices such as smartphones and tablets.