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IT infrastructure and links to HR in place, but results and usability concerns remain


27 February 2003 - THINQ Ltd. today released survey findings indicating that buyers are failing to see a clear return on investment from potential investments in e-learning infrastructures and, particularly, an understanding of how employees can be trained to use e-learning. The results are published in a special survey conducted for THINQ by market research firm Vanson Bourne Ltd.

The survey showed that IT managers in large companies see clarity as to the expected results and benefits of the programme (44%) and training for all affected end users on how to use e-learning (43%) as the major success criteria. These concerns, which have overtaken traditional inhibitors such as inadequate IT infrastructure or poor communication with HR directors as constraining factors in the deployment of e-learning systems, indicate that more information is needed on return on e-learning investments in order for the industry to continue to grow.

These findings were especially pronounced among the large corporates (with turnover of over 250m) - the organisations most likely to benefit from the efficiencies of e-learning, according to THINQ - with 50% citing clarity as the chief concern and 53% citing training issues. The survey also showed that infrastructure and communication issues have largely been resolved with only 14% claiming their IT networks were unable to support e-learning and 25% claiming that they didnt work closely with HR executives.

Alex Raymond, UK managing director, THINQ, said, Based on the results of the survey, it is clear the vendors have to work closer with organisations in order to demonstrate the true value of e-learning solutions and the usability of the products. Vendors must take a stronger partnership orientation and work more closely with customers to build the business case for e-learning past the early adopter community. More effort on the side of Training and IT Managers needs to be put into structuring education programmes and accepting new forms of technology to manage training effectively. We have come a long way, but the survey clearly shows that greater effort from both sides is called for.

Raymond adds, We believe that many vendors in the e-learning market feel that its adequate to build technology on the assumption that customers will be able to fit it within their organisation, figure out how to use it and get some form of return.

Our experience suggests that successful projects result from vendors working closely with customers. We offer full training on our LMS and provide consultancy to HR, Training and IT managers considering e-learning investments. We encourage potential buyers to share training requirement information among departments in order to take a strategic view and achieve Board buy in. Speaking to companies that have successfully implemented programs, whether in the UK or abroad, is also key to understanding how an e-learning program can work. Our partnership. approach has resulted in successful implementations with customers such as IMS HEALTH, the U.S. Navy, HP and Grant Thornton.

The survey was carried out on behalf of THINQ Ltd. by research specialists Vanson Bourne in January 2003. They interviewed 100 IT managers in companies with turnover in excess of 50 million, of which half were in companies of more than 250 million


About THINQ

THINQ Ltd is a subsidiary of THINQ Learning Solutions, Inc., which is the leading provider of enterprise software for learning management with more large-scale deployments than any other LMS vendor, including 24 customers with more than 20,000 learners and nine customers with more than 100,000. More than 200 global organizations and government agencies use the THINQ TrainingServer Learning Management System (LMS) to manage the registration, planning, scheduling, delivery, resource allocation and outcomes of their organization's enterprise learning activities. Customers can further advance their long-term learning strategies using the THINQ Learning Management Maturity Model (LM3) and promote seamless e-learning delivery with the THINQ Courseware Compatibility Center (C3). THINQ customers include the U.S. Navy, Citigroup and Lockheed Martin. THINQ is a private company headquartered in Baltimore, with operations in the United States, Canada and the U.K. For more information, contact THINQ at 44 118 965 3842, or visit http://www.THINQ.com


About Vanson Bourne (1) The survey was conducted for THINQ by market research firm Vanson Bourne Ltd. The survey results were based on 100 telephone interviews with IT managers evenly employed across Manufacturing, Retail/Distribution/Transport (RDT), Finance and Other Commercial (Business Services, Telecoms, Utilities and Construction) companies based in the UK.

THINQ and TrainingServer are registered trademarks, and C3 and LM3 are trademarks, of THINQ Learning Solutions, Inc. All other company or product names may be trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective owners.

For further information:

Casey Balkham/Lena Ahmed

Brodeur Worldwide

Tel: +44 (0)20 7298 7043/+44 (0)20 7298 7097

Email: cbalkham@uk.brodeur.com/lahmed@uk.brodeur.com


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