the Scrooge McDuck of elearning

Waste Not, Want Not

People make spending decisions often with good intentions – not reality – in mind. Maybe you plan to save money and time or fulfill personal goals – but when the reality and good intentions meet, those spending decisions can beget serious waste:

  • Good intentions. This time of year, tons of people sign one year contracts for gyms – swearing to themselves they’re going to work out every day (or at least a few times a week). But enthusiasm dissipates after a few weeks andour gym attendance drops. (A recent survey found 67% of people didn’t use their gym memberships at all!) Money wasted.
  • “Might as well” spending. If one gallon of milk is good, then two gallons at 10% off is better, right? If Costco displays that pallet of 50 lb sacks of quinoa just right, we’ll talk ourselves into purchasing a grain we don’t even know how to cook just to save a little money. Meanwhile, the second gallon of milk goes bad and the quinoa becomes a doorstop. Money wasted.
  • “Just in case” spending. The corporate world is full of examples of spending designed to ensure that the company isn’t caught short. This could also be called “cover your butt” spending. Maintaining a corporate vehicle fleet, investing in network infrastructure or even hiring large groups of employees to ensure adequate capacity for “just in case” scenarios. Money wasted.

Many new commerce models serve to eliminate this type of waste. Zipcars make car ownership optional. Growing numbers of freelance professionals and services like Odesk make flexible hiring possible. Instead of subscribing to Comcast to watch five favorite shows, you can create your own media package with Hulu, Netflix and YouTube. Rather than owning a library of music, you can listen to what you want on Spotify.

OpenSesame is taking the same waste-busting approach to elearning. When we talk to elearning buyers who have signed contracts for large elearning catalogs, we find they don’t know how much of the multi-thousand course catalogs they actually use. When they do know, we typically hear that they use less than 10% of the courses. This means they’re spending way too much on elearning to be ready for a “just in case” scenario.

But they don’t have to. OpenSesame doesn’t force buyers to make long-term commitments to huge catalogs. Instead, buyers pay for just what they use. We’re taking all that unused elearning and throwing it out with the recycling.

Think of OpenSesame like your miserly uncle: We hate waste.

Scrooge image credit: riptheskull on Flickr