Collaboration technology makes a difference at Miami Children's Hospital but not because it facilitates virtual classes for corporate students, or allows live chat among the organization's in-house learners. The software, developed by Mechanicsburg, Pa.-based e-learning provider KnowledgePlanet, and accessed for three years through a third-party hosted conferencing platform, allows its trainers to converse with counterparts in 300 other organizations about best practices, says Loubna Noureddin, director, staff and community education.
"What I truly like about it is my connection to other hospitals," Noureddin says. "I'm able to understand what other hospitals are doing about specific things. I put my question out, and people can respond, and I can answer back." She explains, for instance, that using the system, she and her colleagues have received guidance from other corporate educators, and even subject matter experts, on how to best train workers in fields such as critical care. "You get many other hospitals logging into the system, and telling us what they do," she says.
That instant connection to industry peers doesn't just point Noureddin in the right direction, it's also valuable due to the added efficiency it brings to training. She says her team can avoid pitfalls experienced by other hospitals. "It's very powerful because it saves you a lot of time," Noureddin emphasizes, "upfront time because the other person has done it and can give you ideas."
Just recently, she says conferencing with others in the industry simplified a search for software that allows trainers to easily integrate PowerPoint presentations into an HTML format.