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How do I choose between bespoke & off-the-shelf eLearning?

Choosing between bespoke and off-the-shelf eLearning solutions is getting far harder, with off-the-shelf ones getting more tech savvy and certainly more widely spread.

July 24, 2023

If you’ve never used a bespoke solution before, you may not be aware of the benefits, or know which option will best help you achieve your company’s L&D objectives.

So what are the real differences between the two options?

Bespoke eLearning

  • Shaped to support your strategic business goals, building capability in exactly the right areas
  • Specifically created to meet the needs of your people, making the learning more effective and more readily transferable to their everyday work
  • Can be updated as things change, longer life
  • Supports recruitment of top talent by building your reputation as a place that invests in growing and developing your people
  • Tailored to your business and brand, reinforcing your culture and driving engagement
  • Longer lead time to launch
  • Specifically designed to work across multiple platforms
  • Higher up-front costs
  • No ongoing user costs, so can be used for as many people as needed

Off-the-shelf eLearning

  • Generic package content not specifically linked directly to the company’s goals and desired outcomes
  • Less transferrable so learners need to uncover how the situation or process relates to their role themselves
  • May fill an immediate learning need
  • Generally can’t be updated when the content becomes out of date, shorter life
  • Can be launched quickly and easily
  • May not be developed to work across current platforms
  • Lower up-front costs
  • Ongoing maintenance and support costs are not fixed and may be variable based on user numbers

People value learning and development and they can tell the difference between the two solutions. By looking at the outcomes you’re hoping to achieve and comparing them to what bespoke and off-the-shelf solutions are able to offer, you’ll be able to strategically decide which option will put you in the best possible position to achieve those goals. That’s a win for everyone.