This is a question that everyone who manages or is building an academy should be asking. In this article, we’ll focus on the three most decisive areas you should be analysing in order to make sure your audience and your company is getting the most of your academy.
The three main areas you should focus on to make sure you have a great academy are:
1. Goals: which are related to your overarching learning strategy;
2. Content: the substance of your training, and how it is materialised in learning programmes and courses;
3. User experience: your audience’s experience navigating your academy.
So, are you ready to find out if you have a top-notch academy?
The term eLearning has only been around since the late 1990s, but eLearning itself has come a long way since then. The most important benefits of eLearning — flexibility; scalability; personalisation; reduced costs; effectiveness and access to updated content, just to name a few — are now widespread. As a result, there are now a number of tools that help create and deliver training courses, standardise the learning process and also add informal and more enjoyable elements to otherwise conventional learning processes.
Let’s start with the most fundamental aspect of your academy: its goals. When you start creating an online training programme, it’s easy to lose perspective and get stuck in one particular course or one specific training need. However, it is absolutely essential for any organisation to have an overall objective for their learning efforts. This strategic backbone will provide a sense of direction. Moreover, it can be used as a tool to guide day-to-day decisions, measure and evaluate progress, and also change direction when necessary. Here’s a list of questions to ask yourself in order to assess if your platform is favourable when it comes to its goals:
1. Does your academy help your audience become better at what they do?
Whether you have Customer Academy, a Sales Training Academy, a Partners Academy, a Marketing Academy, this should be your main goal with any kind of academy. Any platform must be created for your audience and be learner-focused.
2. Will your audience have better results after they complete your academy’s courses?
The usefulness of the academy is key for your audience: if it is not useful and it it doesn't have a real application, it’s not a good academy.
3. Will you be able to see a positive impact on your business' KPIs that are directly influenced by your academy? For instance, is the training academy a touch-point in your converted leads? Can your partners generate more revenue? Did your sales cycle become shorter? Are there less customer queries? Has your product usage increased?
Let’s talk about content now as this is a very important area. Content is what will “make or break” your academy’s success. You may have a not-so-great goal definition and a semi-good user experience but if your content isn’t relevant, useful, adjusted to your audience, engaging and well put together, your academy will never have the success you want. Here’s a list of questions to ask to ensure your content is as engaging and as appealing as it should be:
1. Is your content relevant to your main audience? Is it actionable and does it have real-world knowledge and practical tips for your audience in their job or in their life?
2. Is your format engaging, like video?
3. Does your audience have high scores in their final evaluation?
4. Is your course completion rate high?
5. Do you communicate regularly with your audience? Can you effectively assess their engagement level, and are you satisfied with it?
6. Are you collecting feedback in the end of each course and actually analysing it and making the necessary adjustments?
Finally, when it comes to user experience, we want to highlight that an enjoyable user experience aims to fulfill your learner’s needs, providing an enjoyable participation. Having a platform that delivers an optimal user experience is crucial to the success of your learning programme. If your audience is preoccupied with understanding how your platform works instead of focusing on the content and value of your programme, this will be a tough barrier to overcome in making your academy a success.
So, make sure your training platform is so simple and so enjoyable that they’ll want to come back for more. Here are a few questions to ask:
1. How easy is it for your audience to find, to start and to complete a course?
2. Is your platform easy to access and navigate?
3. Is it accessible 24/7, regardless of location and device?
4. Is your audience’s overall experience smooth in both desktop and mobile?
Saying that your company and your training efforts are learner-focused is not enough; you must walk the talk and ensure your academy reflects it.
Now you know what to look out for when assessing the quality and relevance of your online academy, and what to aim for if you are launching a training programme. Do remember that, at bugle, we’re always glad to lend a hand when it comes to assessing your training needs and providing solutions to help you be more successful. So, if you need any help or have any questions, the bugle team is here to help.
You may also find interesting:
Why include video training in your planning for next fiscal year (article)
Stop churn: Why customer education is key to success (article)
12 tips to choose the right training platform (article)
Video Academy ROI Calculator (calculator)
Would you like to learn more about how bugle can help you offer great training experience?