IATSE 873 is a Toronto-based union that represents thousands of technicians in the motion picture industry. Members have won or have been nominated for awards such as: Academy Awards, Emmy Awards, Canadian Screen Awards, and many more. IATSE 873 works to improve, maintain and defend the rights and working conditions of its members. Today, members working in Toronto have the strongest contracts in the industry.
With so much knowledge and expertise amongst their members, they saw the opportunity to build online course for both existing and new film technicians. While building courses at first seems like an easy task, they soon realized that they needed a team of E-Learning professionals to take on this big project.
Almost every major project comes with bottlenecks. Here’s a few that we encountered:
- SME and content creation – Our client hired an SME to write the course outline and script. While every e-learning project should have an SME involved in the creation of the course, we should not assume that the SME is also an e-learning creator. This assumption led to project delays and miscommunication within project team members.
- Feedback mistakes – Every week or two, we send clients a deliverable along with a feedback form. These rounds of feedback allow for transparency and communication throughout the e-learning cycle. We suggested to have 2 key stakeholders to provide feedback on behalf of the entire team. That way, there would be more consistency and control on the feedback loop. However, by the end of the 4 week session and after most of version 1 has been completed, minds were changed and we had to go back to the drawing board.
- We encouraged our client the need for an e-learning writer. One that can translate research materials by the SME to engaging and digestible content. Rather than hiring different SMEs to do research and build courses, they will save time and money by adding an e-learning expert to the project. Importantly, the e-learning expert will ensure to follow writing guidelines and to target the correct audience.
- Since we were already too deep into the project, the client was aware that their late feedback requests were additional scope. After re-negotiations, we re-grouped with all our client stakeholders. With these types of roadblock, it’s important to sit down with all relevant decision makers and communicate effectively. We asked them to give detailed feedback going forward.