Creating Courses: A Quick Guide for SMEs
Many small and medium enterprises (SMEs) have trouble finding the training they need to improve their business practices and grow their businesses. Many courses are expensive, take too long to complete, or simply do not address the needs of SMEs specifically. Fortunately, there are many free and low-cost online course resources designed specifically for SMEs available to you. This guide to these resources can help you find the information you need quickly and at an affordable price, so you can be on your way to improving your business practices and growing your company.
Why courses can be better than MOOCs
Online courses like massive open online courses (MOOCs) have gained a lot of traction in recent years. While online courses are undoubtedly valuable, many business owners wonder whether or not it’s better to host their own company-specific training. This is a valid concern, as doing so can be expensive, but there are advantages of running in-house training programs that you might want to consider. First, you won’t have to deal with MOOC platforms and their student demographics. Not all MOOC students want to learn about your subject matter—some are just looking for any excuse to sign up for a course.
What should you consider before choosing a course
Before choosing a course, there are a few important things to consider. First of all, think about how much you know already: if you’re an absolute beginner and have never thought about running your own business before, then you’ll probably need a starter course that will give you some basic insights and ideas for starting your own business. If, on the other hand, you are someone who has run their own business for years but just wants to update or broaden their knowledge in certain areas, then it might be enough to take a general business course. In either case there is no point spending hours and hours studying something that you don’t really need!
What are the best resources for small business owners?
A quick Google search for resources for small business owners will yield thousands of results. Even narrowing down your query to just online resources and training courses still presents you with hundreds of options. And that’s before we even factor in price or subject matter expertise. So how do you determine which small business training courses are worth your time? As it turns out, there are quite a few things you should consider before signing up for any online course resource—from affordability and usefulness to reliability and certification options. This guide to small business training resources is designed to help you make a well-informed decision on what’s best for your company.
New sources on MOOC platforms
There are quite a few free online courses out there on general management, leadership and business topics that you might find interesting. Coursera offers more than 700 courses through 50 partner universities and colleges. edX hosts many popular MOOCs including Harvard’s entrepreneurship platform. And Lynda, a LinkedIn subsidiary, has over 3,500 video tutorials on digital marketing and web development skills that even small businesses can use to improve their services and operations. There are also various online platforms such as Udemy or Skillshare where you can buy training videos in a wide range of topics. Some platforms have a higher number of generic course videos which cover everything from basic skills like coding for beginners or setting up an accounting system to becoming an expert entrepreneur.
Best e-learning websites and apps
eLearning isn’t a trend anymore – it’s a way of life. There are so many e-learning websites and mobile apps on offer that it can be difficult to know where to start. When choosing e-learning as a training solution, there are two main things you need to consider: convenience and cost. The courses you choose should suit your requirements, whether they are vocational or purely for personal development purposes. There is an abundance of resources available at varying costs, which can be overwhelming when beginning your search for elearning solutions for your business or organisation. However, don’t feel like you have to choose just one; try looking at several solutions so that you get a feel for each platform before settling on one in particular.
Additional ideas for courses to improve your business
Based on my experience, there are a few different types of courses you can take in order to improve your business. Below I’ve listed out all three types, along with links to free or inexpensive courses for each one. The courses you should take will depend on what your goals are, but by taking advantage of these resources and trying out some new skills you’ll be well on your way to becoming a leaner, meaner version of yourself!