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The Power of eLearning Content Development: A Guide for Learning and Development Managers

Updated: Feb 19

Five employee hands raised in a voting gesture, with text 'Empower your workforce with eLearning solutions' next to the hands

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Did you know that organizations that implement eLearning solutions can see revenue growth of up to 18%? That's just one of the many benefits of eLearning for both the organization and the employees. The demand for eLearning solutions has been on the rise, and for good reason.

Not only does it offer an affordable, time-efficient way to train employees, but it also benefits the learners themselves by providing convenient training that enhances their skills and knowledge. But the benefits of eLearning don't stop there. Organizations can also use it to train their partners and customers, ultimately increasing adoption, retention, and revenue. In this blog, we'll explore the many benefits of eLearning, the different types and tools available, and how it can help you drive business success

What is e-learning?

Before we dive into the world of eLearning, it's important to establish a clear definition. In essence, eLearning involves the use of digital resources. This approach relies on electronic devices like computers, tablets, and smartphones that are connected to the internet.

The definition of elearning by the Association for Talent Development

Although eLearning is a formalized form of learning, its delivery through digital devices provides learners with greater flexibility, convenience, and accessibility to the materials. This allows users to learn at their own pace and convenience, anytime and anywhere, with minimal restrictions. In essence, eLearning is the delivery of training, education, or learning through a digital device, such as a computer or tablet.

What is the history of elearning?

Elearning has a rich history that dates back to the 1960s when computer-assisted instruction (CAI) programs were first developed. Over time, the use of network technology and the advent of personal computers, software applications such as Lotus Notes and HyperCard, and the internet helped to shape the eLearning landscape. Here are some significant milestones in the history of eLearning:

  1. The Birth of eLearning: The term "eLearning" was coined in 1999 by Elliott Masie at the TechLearn Conference, defining it as "the use of network technology to design, deliver, select, administer, and extend learning.

  2. The Rise of Open-Source and Standards: In the early 2000s, eLearning underwent a revolution with the release of OLAT, the first open-source learning management system, and the development of SCORM, a standard that enables organisations to package content and distribute it within an LMS. These advances paved the way for the adoption of open-source technologies and greater standardization across the eLearning industry.

  3. The Emergence of Mobile Learning: The rise of mobile devices, such as smartphones and tablets paved the way for mobile learning and made eLearning more accessible than ever before.

  4. The Age of MOOCs and User-Friendly LMSs: In the late 2000s, Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) gained popularity, allowing anyone to access courses from top universities for free. Learning management systems (LMSs) also became more sophisticated and user-friendly.

  5. The Present and Future of eLearning: Today, mobile devices are a popular choice to access eLearning for both businesses and general education, and advancements in technology such as virtual and augmented reality are creating new possibilities for eLearning.

Discover the rich history of eLearning with our timeline:

Timeline by Thinkdom showcasing 11 milestones in the evolution of eLearning across the last 6 decades

In short, eLearning has come a long way since its inception in 1999, with the development of open-source learning management systems, mobile devices, and standards such as SCORM. Today, eLearning is a popular choice for businesses and general education, thanks to its flexibility and engaging multimedia elements.

Synchronous vs. Asynchronous Learning: Which Is Better for Learners and Organizations?

When it comes to online learning, there are two main approaches: synchronous and asynchronous. Synchronous learning is real-time learning that takes place at a specific time and is led by an instructor, while asynchronous learning is self-paced and can be accessed by learners at any time. Both methods have their own set of advantages and disadvantages, depending on the learners' needs and the course content. In this table, we compare the benefits of synchronous and asynchronous learning for learners and organizations.





Requires a specific time to attend, may not be convenient for all

Allows self-paced coursework, convenient for busy schedules


Real-time interaction, immediate feedback

Virtual collaboration with less immediacy


​Immersive experience through real-time participation

Designed with interactive elements for engagement


Direct instruction and guidance from the instructor

​May have less direct instruction and feedback

Time and Cost

​More time-consuming and expensive

​More cost-effective and efficient


​Inaccessible for some due to connectivity or schedule conflicts

More accessible for learners with technology issues, accessible anytime

Flexible eLearning content development Solutions for Diverse Training Objectives

eLearning has become an increasingly popular and effective way for organizations to deliver training to their employees, customers, partners, and stakeholders. With the ability to deliver content through a variety of formats, such as learning management systems, mobile apps, virtual classrooms, and interactive videos, eLearning can be tailored to meet the specific needs of each audience. In this article, we will explore four key types of eLearning training - for employees, for customers, for partners, and for compliance - and discuss the different ways in which organizations can utilize eLearning to enhance their training and development programs.

Elearning for Employee Training

Organizations frequently use eLearning through an LMS for employee training. This includes onboarding new hires and improving employee performance. eLearning formalizes training delivery, making it more efficient than traditional methods. By promoting a culture of eLearning, organizations can encourage ongoing professional development and knowledge-sharing among employees. It encourages professional development and fosters an eLearning culture.

Thinkdom’s Recommendation: It can be delivered through a learning management system (LMS), video hosting platforms, virtual classroom sessions, interactive videos, or mobile learning apps.

Elearning for Customer Training

Customer training programs may seem unconventional, but they can provide significant value. They help customers better understand and utilize your product or service, with software providers being a popular user of such programs. These programs also benefit the organization by improving customer onboarding, increasing engagement, and promoting customer retention.

Thinkdom’s Recommendation: Product demonstrations, tutorials, how-to guides, troubleshooting and support resources, and user manuals. It can be delivered through a customer portal, mobile app, email, or social media.

Elearning for Partner Training

Partner training, also referred to as reseller training, is a key component of enabling your partners to thrive as members of your network. This type of training offers product information, sales and marketing guidance, support training and more to help partners achieve certification requirements. The benefits of partner training are significant, including the ability to improve partner engagement, reduce support costs, scale growth, and maintain brand consistency.

Thinkdom’s Recommendation: This type of eLearning can include sales training, product training, technical training, and certification programs. It can be delivered through a partner portal, webinars, virtual events, or in-person training sessions.

Elearning for Compliance Training

Compliance training is crucial for most organizations as it educates employees on the laws and regulations relevant to their roles and industries. It is mandatory and covers topics like workplace safety, health, and dignity. Examples of compliance training include anti-harassment training, HR law, and diversity training. By implementing an effective compliance training program, organizations can minimize the risk of non-compliance and preserve their reputation. Employees also benefit from a safer and more productive work environment. Additionally, utilizing eLearning through a reliable Learning Management System (LMS) streamlines the process of staying current with changing legislation and updating training materials.

Thinkdom’s Recommendation: This type of eLearning can include training for workplace safety, for anti-harassment, for data privacy and for security awareness, and behavioural ethics. It can be delivered through a combination of online courses, assessments, and certifications, and can be tracked and reported through an LMS.

What is Interactivity in eLearning content development?

The table provides a categorization of the level of interactivity for various eLearning content types, curated by Thinkdom. The level of interactivity is a critical factor in determining the effectiveness and engagement of an eLearning course. The categorization is based on a scale of Levels 1, 1.5, 2, and 3, each with its own definition. The definitions describe the types of content that fall under each category, including examples of eLearning content types that are commonly associated with each level.

This table can serve as a general guideline to help L&D managers, designers and educators choose the appropriate level of interactivity for their eLearning courses, based on their learning objectives and target audience, with the help of Thinkdom.




Level 1


Content that is primarily static, with limited interaction or feedback. Examples include text-based content and audio-based lectures.

Level 1.5

Low to Medium

Content that includes some interactive elements, such as clickable buttons or simple quizzes, but does not require much user input or customization. Examples include basic infographics and some video content.

Level 2


Content that is more interactive and requires some user input or customization. Examples include interactive quizzes, games, and simulations, as well as some video content.

Level 3


Content that is highly immersive and interactive, with advanced features such as virtual reality, augmented reality, and personalized learning experiences. Examples include complex simulations, interactive courses, and VR/AR experiences.

An Overview of eLearning Content Formats classified by Interactivity

Based on our analysis of thousands of client cases, we've concluded that the effectiveness of an eLearning course is directly related to its content. The more interactive, engaging, and relevant the content is, the more effective the course will be. There are various types of content to choose from, and we have listed the main ones you should consider below, here at Thinkdom.

Level 1 | Low Interactivity:

Text-based slide from Thinkdom's data privacy course illustrating Level 1, a low interactivity level, to showcase the range of eLearning content types

Text-Based Content: This type of content is text-heavy and can include documents, manuals, guides, and articles. It may or may not be interactive, depending on the formatting and structure.

Video Content: This type of content includes video-based lectures, simulations, and demonstrations. It can be pre-recorded or live and can be used for various purposes, such as introducing a topic, illustrating a concept, or demonstrating a process.

Audio Content: This type of content includes audio-based lectures, podcasts, and audio books. It can be used for various purposes, such as providing background information, explaining a concept, or storytelling.

Level 1.5 | Low to Medium Interactivity:

An ebook offered to employees during Thinkdom's data privacy course, demonstrating Level 2 - a low to medium interactivity level to showcase an eLearning content format

Screencasts: This type of content includes video recordings of a computer screen, often used to demonstrate software or processes. Screencasts can be used to provide step-by-step instructions or showcase specific features.

eBooks: This type of content includes digital books or guides that can be downloaded and read on various devices. eBooks can cover a range of topics and can include multimedia elements, such as videos and images.

Articles and Blogs: This type of content includes written articles and blog posts, often used to provide background information, insights, and analysis on various topics. Articles and blogs can be interactive, allowing readers to comment and share their thoughts.

Podcasts: This type of content includes audio-based shows that can cover a range of topics, from interviews and news to storytelling and education. Podcasts can be downloaded and listened to on various devices.

Level 2 | Medium Interactivity:

Thinkdom's learning modules feature interactive quizzes and live leaderboards to increase engagement, showcasing Level 2 - a medium interactivity level

Interactive Quizzes: This type of content includes quizzes, tests, and assessments. They can be used to evaluate knowledge, reinforce learning, and provide feedback.

Interactive Games and Simulations: This type of content includes educational games and simulations that enable learners to practice and apply skills and knowledge in a safe and engaging environment.

Interactive Infographics: This type of content includes visual representations of complex information, which can be interactive, allowing learners to explore and interact with the data.

Level 3 | High Interactivity:

Thinkdom's interactive courses offer engaging simulations and scenarios, showcasing Level 3 - a high interactivity level

Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality: This type of content includes immersive technologies that allow learners to explore, experience, and interact with virtual environments and objects.

Interactive Courses: This type of content includes complete eLearning courses that are interactive and designed to engage learners with multimedia elements, interactive features, and assessments.

How can elearning be delivered?

Six ways of delivering elearning including Blended Learning, LMS, and Mobile Learning

An LMS is a software platform that manages and delivers eLearning courses and tracks learner progress. It supports various eLearning standards, such as SCORM and xAPI.

Web-Based Training (WBT)

WBT is a type of eLearning that is delivered through a web browser. Learners can access the training materials from anywhere with an internet connection.

mLearning is eLearning that is delivered through mobile devices, such as smartphones and tablets. Learners can access the training materials on-the-go and at their convenience.

Virtual Classroom

A virtual classroom is an online environment that simulates a traditional classroom. Learners can participate in live sessions with an instructor and interact with other learners.

Blended Learning

Blended learning combines eLearning with traditional classroom training. This approach can offer a more flexible and customized learning experience for learners.

Social Learning

Social learning uses social media platforms, forums, and other online communities to encourage collaboration and knowledge-sharing among learners.

When choosing a delivery method, consider the needs and preferences of your learners, the content and format of your eLearning courses, and the resources and tools available to you. Additionally, ensure that your chosen delivery method is compatible with the eLearning standards you plan to use to ensure interoperability with other eLearning tools and platforms.

How can I launch e-learning in 8 easy steps?

Thinkdom's infographic presents eight steps for Learning and Development managers of organizations to launch eLearning, providing a helpful guide

Step 1: Define Learning Objectives

The first step to launching eLearning is to define clear learning objectives. These objectives should be specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound (SMART). You should also identify your target audience and their learning needs.

Step 2: Choose an e-learning content development partner

To develop the eLearning content after defining your learning objectives, you can choose to work with an eLearning content development partner. They can help you create engaging and relevant multimedia elements, such as videos, audio, and images, and design interactive features, such as quizzes and assessments, all aligned with your learning objectives. Working with a credible eLearning content development partner can ensure that your eLearning course meets the highest quality standards and provides an effective learning experience for your audience.

Step 3: Choose an Authoring Tool

An authoring tool is a software that allows you to create eLearning content. There are many authoring tools available, such as Articulate Storyline, Adobe Captivate, and Lectora. You should choose an authoring tool that suits your needs, budget, and level of expertise.

Step 4: Choose an LMS

A learning management system (LMS) is a software platform that manages and delivers eLearning courses. You should create an LMS account and upload your eLearning content to the LMS. The LMS will also track learner progress and provide analytics and reporting.

Step 5: Test and Refine

Before launching your eLearning course, you should test it thoroughly to ensure that it is error-free and meets your learning objectives. You should also refine the course based on feedback from beta testers or early adopters.

Step 6: Launch and Promote

Once your eLearning course is ready, it's time to launch and promote it. You can use various channels, such as email, social media, and advertising, to reach your target audience. You should also ensure that your eLearning course is accessible and easy to use for your learners.

Step 7: Monitor and Evaluate

After launching your eLearning course, you should monitor learner progress and evaluate the effectiveness of the course. You can use analytics and reporting tools to track learner engagement, completion rates, and learning outcomes. You should also gather feedback from learners to improve the course.

Step 8: Update and Improve

Based on the feedback and evaluation, you should update and improve your eLearning course. This may involve adding new content, refining existing content, or incorporating new technologies and features. The goal is to continuously improve the eLearning experience for your learners.


In conclusion, eLearning is a modern method of acquiring knowledge and skills that are rapidly gaining popularity in corporate training and education. It involves using digital technology to deliver engaging and interactive learning experiences that can be accessed anytime and anywhere. Studies have shown that eLearning is a highly effective way to learn, with learners retaining up to 60% more information compared to traditional classroom-based training.

Additionally, eLearning can be more cost-effective, scalable, and convenient than traditional training methods, making it an attractive option for organizations of all sizes. As technology continues to evolve, it is clear that eLearning will play an increasingly important role in shaping the future of learning and development.

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