Amway Malaysia e-Learning Case Study
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 is a global leader in the direct-selling industry with the record sales of more than US$11 billion today. More than 4 million Independent Business Owners (IBOs) worldwide sell Amway products, everything from health care, beauty, home care to consumer products. Amway supports their Independent Business Owners (IBOs) with good source of merchandising materials, workshops and trainings. Amway Global has successfully leveraged e-learning, using SumTotal Learning Management System (LMS) and Web-based Trainings (WBTs), to reach and effectively train their sales force mainly in North America, i.e. their Independent Business Owners (IBOs) in US and Canada. SumTotal Learning Management System is also deployed in three separate on-premise installations to manage learning activities around the globe.

Amway Global Education plays the roles in developing many self-directed web-based training (WBT) for Amway Global (North American affiliate). Design Document of the WBT was also published to detail out the Instructional Strategy and Design Overview. This Design Document is then to be served as the guideline for Amway Corporate in other markets to localize the web-based training.  

Appstronic is appointed as e-Learning courseware Developer

In March 2013, after going through a very rigorous vendor qualification process, Amway Malaysia has selected Appstronic to be their e-learning WBT developer in Malaysia to localize two of their US-made web based trainings (WBTs), namely

1) Nutrilite Vitamin, Mineral and Supplements and
2) Nutrilite All Plant Protein

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The Challenges to localize e-Learning Courseware

Localization of the US-made WBT is not as simple as doing the translation of the content only. It involves many aspects including those issues like adapting the products and content to a specific locale. 

Multi-languages

The most important aspect of localization is to use local languages to convey the knowledge using WBT. The adoption of local languages will help IBOs to easily gain and absorb the knowledge by teaching IBOs the market need for the products, the branding and positioning of the Nutrilite products, the target customer segments, and selling skills for the products. Amway Malaysia has decided 3 languages for the localized version of courseware I.e. Malay, Chinese and English. 

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Audio is primary

Another aspect of localization is the differences of learning cultures in US and Asian countries particularly Malaysia. US-made WBT is designed based on text-driven concept, meaning all necessary content will be contained in text elements, audio is considered secondary. This also means learners have to do self-reading at their own pace, based on their comfortable learning speed. However, this method of learning is not effective in Asian countries and it will produce high rate of e-learning failures. Asian learners prefer story-telling kind of learning, with audio as primary.

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Related to their Daily Life

Understand from the Amway Nutritionists and the Amway Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) in these 2 WBTs, the ingredients and packaging of the Amway products varies for US and Asian countries, due to different diet habits and life styles. During the development stage, Appstronic’s Instructional Designer team have been working closely with Amway Nutritionists and the products’ Subject Matter Experts to show the Asian foods such as Roti Canai, Nasi Lemak (wiki: fragrant rice dish cooked in coconut milk and "pandan" leaf commonly found in Malaysia) on the courseware, to make the learning ‘related’ to their daily life.

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The Decision on HTML5 or Flash

US-made WBT uses Flash Technology to deliver the content. In the recently years, HTML5 is becoming increasingly popular as the another alternative to Flash to deliver the e-learning content. HTML5 is capable of running on any computer and also mobile devices such as Android devices, iPhones, iPad, tablets and smartphones, some of which cannot run Flash. One issue arises whether we shall use Flash or HTML5 to develop the localized WBT.

Once again, after going through serious consideration, Amway Malaysia decided to use both HTML5 and Flash for their WBT, because many Malaysia IBOs’ are using IPad for their marketing activities, which Flash cannot run on IPad.

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The Decision on Authoring Tools

There are several HTML5 e-Learning authoring tools in the market today. We decided to use Adobe Captivate to be the authoring tool for all the Amway projects. We have been using Adobe Products such as Photoshop, Illustrator, Flash, After Effects for the various tasks, we find Adobe Captivate works seamlessly good with the rest of Adobe Products. Furthermore, Adobe Captivate is capable to publish both Flash and HTML5-based content. 

Another highlight about Adobe Captivate is that it is device responsive, meaning it has the ability to detect what technology (Flash or HTML5) is supported by the user’s device, and will automatically deliver the appropriate technology-based content. This way of approach is however has several trade offs. One, we need to do quality checking on two different outputs. This causes more resources. Another trade off is that, the SCORM zip being published is larger because Adobe Captivate combines both Flash and HTML5 contents.

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e-Learning Development Stages

There are the stages involved in localizing the 2 WBTs: 

Content Gathering 

Prepare Storyboard 

Endorse Storyboard 

Voice Over 

Video Editing and Effects 

Management Review 

Upload LO to LMS 

 

By Liang Ee Hang | Google | LinkedIn