“We’re now thinking about what we can do instead of feeling stuck”.
It might seem like there’s not a cloud in the sky when you’re such a successful provider of online training for environmental and public health as the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health (CIEH). But the grass isn’t always greener on the other side of the fence; an older learning platform or outdated courses can make you feel restricted or even hinder your plans for the future.
We’d love to say “Simply make a fresh start with aNewSpring”. But we also know that migrating to another learning platform can be quite the task. And, what happens when it’s harder than you expected? Where do you even start? We’ve had the opportunity to sit down with Stephen Joyce, Programme Manager at CIEH, and discuss their experience of migrating to aNewSpring. Here’s a little inside look into how they’ve successfully managed to migrate their entire portfolio to aNewSpring.
In search of a new learning platform
It all started with the conclusion that their old learning platform seemed outdated. The look and feel was outdated and the options to renew or extend their old platform were limited. In other words, CIEH was in need of a new learning platform that matched their financial and technological desires and would allow them to open up new learning opportunities in the future. A big decision, so it wasn’t easy to choose even when they had made a shortlist of seven options.
After extensive research, pleasant contact with our team and an informative presentation on what aNewSpring has to offer, the decision was made, and there was no turning back. It was time to prepare for the migration that would lead CIEH into the future of online and blended learning. One minor detail: it also had to be done within two months.
Migrating to a new learning platform
Stephen says it wasn’t necessarily the migration itself but the preparation needed to start the migration process that was difficult. They needed to understand the old system and inform all of their clients. Especially figuring out the structure of the old platform was hard since it wasn’t what they expected it to be. They’d anticipated three layers and around 200 companies to be involved, but due to several reseller points, the platform turned out to have over seven layers containing over 1,500 companies involved.
Apart from the preparation, the migration process itself is also not as easy as it may seem. It’s not the same as just the simple export and import of data. Especially when there are multiple companies involved: with CIEH, clients had their own settings for their particular courses. These settings had to be taken into account when moving the content. Besides, the type of data is also important. If your platform uses a SCORM format, it’s rather easy to move data (although still not as simple as copy-pasting everything). You’ll have more trouble moving data if your old platform uses other content and settings.
This is where the aNewSpring team provided a lot of support. As far as Stephen and his team are concerned, our knowledge of our own platform - as well as the understanding of settings within other platforms because we have some real tech-lovers in our team - abled us to support the migration process. However, the real heavy lifting was done by the team at CIEH themselves. After all, they had to decide on how they wished their new portfolio to be structured!
Reaping the benefits of the migration
The CIEH team did a great job at that as well. They successfully migrated their content within just six weeks and are now looking at ways to use aNewSpring to improve the course (for example, making courses adapt based on the learner’s performance). Although they’re still running their final tests, we can spill the beans by telling you the courses on the improvement list are focussed on Food Safety in Catering, Allergen Awareness and Health and Safety in the Workplace.
According to Stephen, the migration to aNewSpring has offered more than just a refreshing look and feel of their content. It has allowed them to open up to new ideas regarding online learning, and it will be easier to add courses or build new environments in the future. “Our team has opened up to new ideas. We’re now thinking about what we can do instead of feeling stuck”.