Showcased here is the example the Australian Broadcasting Association (ABC) identifying the various skills of its work force and sharing that knowledge. The web site features the "Australian Flexible Learning Framework" designed to "support e-learning opportunities" in a myriad of industries. The work is supported by the Commonwealth of Australia's national training system’s e-learning strategy and managed by a team at the Canberra Institute of Technology. The MERLOT link leads to the specific example of the ABC Case, but the site contains links to many other business examples of e-learning projects from industries such as health care, retail, transportation, manufacturing, etc.
To understand the case of how one organisation gathers and uses information about the skills, job roles, personal stories, knowledge and people within the organisation.
Target Student Population:
Students, undergraduate or graduate, with interest in management and organisation.
Prerequisite Knowledge or Skills:
Type of Material:
This specific link demonstrates a product called "Knowledge Pool" developed by the Australian Broadcasting Association (ABC). It is used for defining and recording the skills within an organisation and for capturing and sharing the knowledge of the existing workforce through informal learning.
Could be used as an example or case demonstrating how ABC informally collects and shares information about and among its employees, with implications for human resources and general management.
Web browser to access written content.
Evaluation and Observation
This features the efforts of a real organisation, with the inherent value of affording students the opportunity to evaluate and critique its effectiveness.
The web site is simple and well organized, the main value is allowing employees to contribute and benefit from information (and for anyone to use the browse or search feature) in five areas: 1)Skills, 2)Job roles, 3)Stories, 4)Knowledge, and 5)People.
It appears the case is not structured on any kind of model, theory or previously reputable work to organise its content. The instructions given to employees acknowledge that "the facility on[ly] works if [employees] are willing to tell [their] story as this will encourage others to tell theirs." So garbage in, garbage out, or if not garbage then certainly data of questionable value. For example, the first on the tool's list of 77 employee skills is "Analyse" for which there is "No information available yet." The skill of "Use a Computer" contains the sole entry "yyyy". Other skills include "Eat an orange" and others include information of quite limited value. The reason for this is that the content is obviously dependent on the voluntary collaboration of employees, for which doesn't appear to have been much contribution yet. As another illustrative example, there are 14 job roles indexed, and the role of "Manager" identifies 9 specific skills (Write blogs, Use a computer, Manage staff, Make a presentation, etc.) Because content has been left up to employee input, this likely does not align too well with the theoretically- and empirically-supported skills and roles and knowledge that is generally taught in accredited management courses.
Potential Effectiveness as a Teaching Tool
Effectiveness for what? If the goal is to simply show an example of one organisation's efforts, then this easily does that. The strength here is that it showcases a real organisation, and demonstrates a simple but potentially powerful organisational tool.
If the goal is to demonstrate best practice in how to create and manage a database of employee skills and knowledge, then it seems to lack much content.
Ease of Use for Both Students and Faculty
Simple web site, with a clear web site map or outline, and working links.
Getting to the actual content requires several clicks through informational screens, for which the content language is a bit obtuse in explaining exactly what the purpose and content is.