NetLearning in News ~掲載記事一覧~

Corporate E-learning in Japan -A new multibillion-yen business

    Toru Kishida, President of NetLearning, Inc., believes that user needs are simply not being met by current players. "There are perhaps 500 or 600 companies providing e-learning systems and services here in Japan. But only a handful of these are ventures, like us. Most are large companies that got into e-learning just to sell their existing systems or other products." This leads to an overemphasis on hardware and complex IT systems, which client companies purchase but then have a hard time in using properly. "As one of my customers put it,"continues Kishida, "I go out to buy books and everybody is trying to sell me bookshelves instead."

     Kishida, who worked in new business development at SECOM before founding NetLearning in 1998, takes a different approach, concentrating exclusively on his mission to create Japan's leading purveyor of "total e-learning solutions." NetLearning offers over 550 separate "catalog" courses, ranging from basic skills training in Java and TOEIC preparation to privacy law compliance, sexual harassment awareness, and corporate social responsibility. But their strength is in customizing an outsourced package of unique services for each client―including custom program development, LMS platform operations, usage administration and completion reporting. And it seems to be working: since their establishment in 1998, NetLearning claims to have e-trained more than 667,000 persons - the most in Japan -while achieving an average completion rate of 90 percent in comparison to an industry average of less than 30 percent.

      The evolution of mobile phone technology is another area of interest to content and service vendors such as NetLearning. As content availability becomes "ubiquitous," more and more employees, hobbyists, and part-time students will be catching up on their e-learning during their daily commutes on the train. NetLearning recently launched one such program for retail sales staff at Kanebo's cosmetics division. Designed as a follow-up to classroom teaching, content made available on the mobile phone platform includes text summaries that have been simplified considerably to facilitate easy navigation from a mobile phone keyboard, and quizzes that are limited to short multiple-choice or yes/no questions. The project will begin with 2,000 employees, with NetLearning earning 200-300 yen in content licensing fees each time a user initiates a new session. NetLearning expects sales of 50 million yen for this service in their first year of operation.