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February Newsletter

How to Evaluate E-Learning & See Us in Southampton Next Week

In this newsletter, we cover some 'coalface' views from experienced trainers on some of the shortcomings of e-learning methods, we're in Southampton next week at the extremely popular Business 2 Business South Show, and we round up some of the key concerns expressed in our 'Cloud' seminar at the North Hants Expo.


Why Online Training isn't the Finished Article

Online training is often pitched as the best of all worlds: businesses save money, gain faster results and have less staff 'downtime'. Yet, though online training has many merits, this rose-tinted view of the benefits can often lead to eventual disappointment.

Here are some concerns taken directly from the audience:

1. You Can't Expect to Copy the Classroom

"If classroom training doesn't really work for the training business in question then if this is taken and adapted for online training, the end result is worse. There are too many online training courses which are undermined because they do not take this new medium fully into account."

2. Profound Change Can't be Achieved Remotely

"If you are looking for behaviour change and business results, I believe online tutorials alone are not enough. In order to create true behavioral change, programmes need to include larger communications and change management campaigns. To get behavioural change you need to engage leaders and make sure they understand and fulfill their role in supporting new on-the-job behaviours. This cannot be done remotely."

3. Different Learning Styles Need Different Approaches

"One issue that has got 'lost' is learner preference or, if you like, learning styles. Most people just don't feel very comfortable sitting in front of a PC screen to learn. We learn best when we are able to use all our senses, and in communication with a machine we lose substantially: gestures, body language, facial expressions, tone, pitch, smell. I could go on. All the things we have in a face-to-face interaction with a teacher."

4. Those Who are 'Lost' can be Spotted

"As a trainer, I see immediately when someone doesn't follow me and I can intervene. As a student, I can signal if I have issues. Online, that is much more challenging (if not impossible), obviously varying by degree, depending on whether you use synchronous methods or not."

5. Meeting Targets is not the Same as Understanding

"As for success, forgive me for being cynical, but isn't it often about "compliance" rather than factual results? I've seen too many examples where compliance training was outsourced online whereas 'mission critical' training was conducted face to face. This is not coincidental. In compliance training you don't necessarily care about the outcome, you just need to get everyone to do it and to be able to prove that. So that's why it's often done through e-learning."

So - what's the solution? We give you the answer in the finished article to these challenges on our website.


Win Free Training with Us at the Business 2 Business Show, 2-3 March

Come and see us at the Business 2 Busine1ss Show in Southampton in early March. Use the link at the top right of this message to pre-register for free.

Where We Are

We are at Stand T38 which is downstairs in the indoor school. The second aisle from the right in this area.

Win a Day of Our Time

You can put your business card into one of our prize draws:

  • Win a Microsoft Certified trainer for a day
  • Win a free day of our Cloud9 consultancy service to develop a strategy to implement cloud-based IT

Location & Timing

Location: The Rose Bowl, Botley Road, West End, Southampton, SO30 3XH
Registration: visit website
Dates: 2-3 March 2011
Timing: From 10am

Please come and see us, we'd love to see you there.


We Tackle the 4 Biggest Cloud Computing Concerns

If you were not able to see our session at the North Hants Expo, then here are the four major concerns business leaders shared when it comes to using Cloud Computing, and our responses to those concerns.

What if my internet connection goes down?

It's important to first consider how important the connection is to your business and, if essential, it is best to invest in secure connections such as leased lines. If the occasional hour of downtime is acceptable, you can be more flexible, and the backup of mobile broadband, such as 3G, should mean connection continuity. Furthermore, an unreliable internet connection will cause problems for a business whether or not it is using cloud services.

How safe is my data?

Your connection to the cloud will encrypt all data needing secure transmission and the data centres used by all main cloud suppliers have full time on site and internet security experts protecting them. These locations invest more in security than most individual businesses can muster - so the safety available is much greater than most non-cloud options, for example on-site servers.

What effect will Wikileaks have on the Cloud idea?

Wikileaks is given information mainly secured by internal informants who acquire knowledge from within offices. Wikileaks then reports it where it believes the information is in the public's interest. They do not hack in and steal information through the Internet, so Wikileaks is more about your staff and internal security processes, and not cloud storage and services.

Is the Cloud a Short-term 'Fad'?

Cloud technology is already bringing significant benefits to organisations that use it to save money and improve efficiencies. Businesses we speak with that have adopted it are already receiving the benefits and are not regretting the change.

All the big software and hardware brands, from Microsoft and Google to Adobe and Apple, are investing aggressively in Cloud technologies. Whether another idea will come along to trump it remains to be seen, but at the moment, and for the foreseeable future, Cloud will offer the best solutions to support many computer-based services in every organisation.



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