When we think of education technology, our minds instantly flash images of sleek online teaching and learning platforms designed to rake in money from knowledge-hungry users. We seldom think of ways in which e-learning can be used in-house, for the betterment of employees. And how this can, in turn, impact the effectiveness and performance of your business. In 2013, Twitter set an example in knowledge enhancement for technology businesses, by introducing an in-house online teaching and learning software to enrich its engineering talent pool. To do this, it acquired a company called Marakana, who had rich expertise in designing open source software for online learning. And after the absorption, Twitter launched Twitter University. Marakana was an established brand in the tech training space, having created courses on Android, Java, HTML5, Scala, Python, Hadoop, jQuery and other languages for over 100,000 engineers. It had done this, primarily through training videos.
By 2013, Twitter had morphed into a well-known brand and had outgrown its image as an emerging startup. By this stage, it felt the need to enhance its array of training programmes. It wanted to promote a culture of continuous learning and through the Marakana acquisition, it widened its spectrum of training projects to include orientation classes for engineers, an iOS bootcamp, JVM Fundamentals, Distributed Systems and Scala School. Twitter’s greatest endeavour through all this was to retain its top talent. It also sought a sea of fresh, exceptional engineering talent through the Marakana brand. Marakana had garnered a fantastic community of engineers by then, and Twitter knew it could benefit from this, especially because it had been working on several open source projects in recent years.
Twitter has been one of the first companies to recognise both, the power of eLearning, and the importance of a holistic, continual training programme for employees. Yet, you don’t have to be a Twitter to implement gold-standard training programmes. There are several ready technologies that you can use to get your training rolling. Take Pinlearn, a great turnkey framework used by several established ed tech companies. Pinlearn is an ed tech brand with several turnkey products under its umbrella. The company nimbly crafts ed tech products to fit a range of different needs. So, whether you are opening an online learning and teaching platform, or an exclusive Learning Management System (LMS) to showcase your own content, Pinlearn has you covered. The framework lets you put an education technology platform together in just a few days, and you’ll likely spend one hundred times less on the launch than you would if you set up your own framework.
Twitter has been joined by a host of other companies in uncovering the tremendous potential of an in-house training hub. AT&T’s AT&T University has been a training powerhouse for its employees.
Headquartered in Dallas, with satellite locations spread across the United States, AT&T University has collaborated with Georgia Tech and Udacity Inc to create a first-of-its-kind virtual degree called Online Master of Science in Computer Science (OMS CS). It has also designed numerous immersive, self-paced technical credentials called Nanodegrees, for web and mobile, data analytics and tech entrepreneurship. Like Twitter, AT&T is insuring itself for the future by keeping its talent pool future-ready. And because its workforce is spread across the world, a training programme underpinned by video courses is ideal.
Schneider Electric has made a name for itself in how it has equipped its employees with a massive library of online courses on executive development, leadership, customer education, energy and solutions, sales excellence and functional skills. The company hosts Energy University, an e-learning tool comprising more than 200 courses on energy efficiency and data centre topics.
Larger companies who have expertise in technology layering and development, often prefer to build the technology stack for their training programmes themselves. But that’s not always a practical option for smaller ventures. By using a ready framework, you’re actually absorbing its underlying technology layers. Pinlearn, for instance, is made up of Laravel 5.3 (PHP), Agular JS 1, Mysql, Redis cache, NGINX web server, SSL, JQuery and Boostrap. In turn, your users experience a polished, smooth interface, akin to some of the biggest learning brands in the world.
Training through a blend of eLearning software and on-site simulation plays a pivotal role in onboarding employees, keeping them up to date with industry trends, and ensuring that they are ahead of the curve. Companies big and small are realising the power of training and how it can impact business performance and outlook. For some companies, who have the money and the time, building their own eLearning portal may be practical. However, this entails heavy investment in manpower, licenses and training. Instead, many companies prefer to purchase readymade frameworks that can push-start their business plan within a few days.
Twitter saw the difference in its workforce when it laid more focus on training. And it inspired many other technology companies to invest in software for employee education. A workforce is a direct determinant of how well a business performs. And internal training tools are imperative for every business. It’s the age of employee eLearning. Are you there yet?