The Rapid Elearning Blog

e-learning decision maker

You just spent months working on an e-learning project. You tested it. Got feedback. Made adjustments. And now you’re ready to launch.

But then the person for whom you’ve been building the project says, “Before we launch, let’s get my manager’s approval.”

And at that point, things to start to unravel. The boss wants to make changes. The legal team gets involved. Marketing comes into make sure the messaging is right. And so it goes.

This stuff happens. We’ve all been there.

When building an e-learning course, one of the first things to do is find out who the final authority of the project is and get that person involved right away. You need to understand why the course exists and what it will take to get it launched.

A few core goals when meeting with the final authority:

  • Clarify objectives
  • Identify metrics for success
  • Determine the review and approval process
  • Get an approved budget

Above is a list of a few considerations, but there are plenty more. The main thing is to get the key decision makers involved early and identify who is the final authority. From there determine the scope of the project and get an agreed upon service level agreement or contract.

And then work from that.

Don’t let your project slip away without those details and be derailed right before you’re done.

Two questions:

  • What types of things derail your e-learning projects?
  • What process do you use to come to an agreement before starting?

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2 responses to “Why You Need to Know Who’s the Boss of the E-Learning Course”

February 11th, 2020

Hi, Tom: I generally have decision makers approve the project plan. Most of the times this happens, and I’m covered. BUT sometimes it’s difficult to get formal approval without burning weeks of potential development time. In those instances, I document everything — like the three emails I sent asking for formal approval — so if a key stakeholder comes in at the eleventh hour and suggests structural changes, I’m pretty much covered. I also include a phrase like the following in my requests: “If I don’t receive your feedback by X date, I will assume you approve of the design as-is, and will begin development.”

Tom, been though what you describe many times, and nearly pulled my hair out. The best thing I’ve found to do as a learning developer is to always consider a project as a work in progress, even when it is complete. Never spend time putting the finishing touches on a project that has only been through 2 or 3 reviews. And even if you do everything right, it is not like you can say, ‘I’ve done my job as was originally requested. I’m done with this and moving on.’ If something is incorrect or was left out, or the message is not right, even if it’s ALL someone else’s fault, it still has to be redone, over and over until everyone has finally taken notice their and had their say. Yes, it is a huge waste of time and money, and no one wants to do the same job over, but that is how it goes.