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Self-service e-learning transforms training for Student Loan Company

The Student Loans Company is a non-profit government organisation set up to provide loans and grants to students at university or college across the UK. With offices in Glasgow, Wales and County Durham, the SLC have over 3,000 staff that required an innovative e-learning solution.

The Challenge

The SLC recognised that the user experience would be critical to the success of this platform and learner engagement. The aim was to replicate the social learning or just-in-time learning we experienced through interactions on social media and the wider web. They also wanted a platform that could grow with the business; initially deliver a robust, core solution and expand on that as they enhanced services for employees.

Lynn Rodgers, SLC’s L&D Manager explained: “SLC’s learning strategy sets out our aim to deliver creative and innovative learning solutions via an accessible platform. Inspired by our company vision, we are committed to driving self-led learning through digital platforms, communities of practice and social media.”

The new platform had to meet very specific needs including:

  • A single platform for all e-learning content, to be hosted on a secure external server.
  • Ability to incorporate a variety of learning solutions
  • Ready-made e-learning content covering a number of standard business and management skills.
  • Self-service learning, with self-registration and ‘help’ function
  • Easy to use administration functions and reporting suite.
  • Account management and help desk support
Student Loans Company LMS

The Solution

The product and services offered by Learning Nexus fitted extremely well with the needs of the business.

Lynn said: “From our first meeting their passion about the learner experience and the positive impact online learning can have was evident”.

Learning Nexus established a team and a project plan to support the LMS implementation, whilst tracking all activity and communication. James Marshall from MediaCorp and Bev Hares from Learning Nexus advised on how the platform could meet SLC’s needs, the best way to implement plans and also shared good practice from previous projects. Efforts were focused on the most effective solution for employees and how SLC could optimise return on investment.

Lynn states: “It was a real team effort and this helped as we worked together to overcome any challenges we experienced.”

The features included:

  • Self-registration - providing access to new employees on their first day
  • Automatic password reset and support features to reduce admin time
  • A simple design/interface providing easy navigation
  • Access anywhere, anytime including via tablets and smart phones
  • Introduction of certificates for mandatory training with clear status reports allowing managers and employees to see progress
  • Introduction of blended programmes. For example, the course ‘Equality Diversity & Inclusion at SLC’ now includes an eLearning module, a video featuring the Chairman and employees sharing what it means to them, the EDI Policy and annual report and links to further learning.
  • Re-launch of SLC’s Management Development Programme, incorporating a range of learning solutions
  • Suite of videos covering a number of business skills, providing quick ‘how to...’ education to employees
  • Suite of Welsh language courses, supporting colleagues in Wales to live their language at work and at home.

The Results

“We successfully launched our Digital Learning Academy in May 2016 with internet cafes giving employees hands on experience of the platform and our solution.”

The initial focus for the digital learning academy was to get employees onto the site and exploring the new learning available to them. Within the first four weeks 40% of SLC employees have logged on - a great result for the business.

The feedback from SLC employees was very positive...

“Amazing!! Really easy to follow. It’s great that there is the functionality to track my team’s progress.”

“The system looks great and very user friendly. Looking forward to using some curses for my personal development – thanks!”

“Brilliant! I can see the courses I have to do”

“Great new site, easy to use. And love the new layout!”