Having decided on the content for your IT Induction, you will then need to decide on the best way to communicate this information to your new users. The method of delivery you choose will depend on your organisation, the facilities and resources you have available and certain characteristics of your new users. Some of the factors to consider in choosing the delivery method(s) may include:
• Number of staff involved.
• Geographical location of users.
• Staff availability; for instance do staff work shift patterns?
• Availability of relevant teaching/subject matter expertise.
• Time restrictions on the learning.
• Flexibility expectations.
• How often the information will need to be updated.
• Accessibility issues.
• The organisation’s stance on environmental issues.
A comparison of training delivery methods is shown in Table 1.
The characteristics of each training method outlined in Table 1 should help you decide which training approach would most suit your organisation and your users. Particularly where the users are concerned, you may want to take cognisance of their preferred learning style. However, in reality, this proves quite difficult to realise, especially if you have a large and diverse user population. There is also a counter-argument to learning styles in that users who are only able to learn in one style limit their educational opportunities as they will become selective in what they learn based on how the learning is delivered.
Nevertheless, the methods that have been outlined in Table 1, can be successfully combined into a learning programme resulting in a blended learning approach, which may provide for a more flexible solution. Notwithstanding these flexible learning opportunities, the maintainability of the IT Induction programme is key to its success and therefore any chosen delivery solution must be one that can be consistently supported by the organisation. Chapter 7 discusses further the maintainability of the IT Induction programme.