5 Compelling Reasons Why eLearning & SaaS are Surging in the Downturn

Let’s start by throwing some figures out there:

Global industry analysts report the eLearning industry is growing at between 15-30% per annum globally, and is expected to surpass US$52 billion dollars by 2010. Even under the current economic climate while training budgets are being cut, a Feb 2009 report by TowardsMaturity.org indicates that 64% of 225 respondents believe the % of overall training budget allocated to e-learning will increase over the next 2 years, while over 30% believed it would remain the same.

A recent survey by IDC reports that in 2009 the Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) industry will grow by 40.5% over 2008’s figures. By the end of 2009, 76% of all U.S. organisations will use at least one SaaS-delivered application. The % of U.S. firms which plan to spend at least 25% of their IT budgets on SaaS applications will increase from 23% in 2008, to nearly 45% in 2010.

Why are eLearning and SaaS doing so well?

Well, a bi-product of both is they generally result in money savings. Whether it be through reducing travel and classroom-based training costs or by offering fully hosted systems that charge on a usage basis, the adoption of either can also reduce staffing requirements and IT costs.

But more than that, I want to draw attention to the real benefits of SaaS for the end user, as we see it here at Litmos (which is a SaaS-based eLearning product):

  1. Basically, it just works. You sign up and your system just works, you can get started ASAP
  2. Your data is secure and accessible from anywhere in the world, you do not need to worry about creating backups
  3. You do not pay for upgrades yet still have access to the cutting edge technology. This means that 5 years down the track you’re not stuck with an aging system
  4. A monthly fee means no capex to get started; training becomes a totally operational expense
  5. No IT department needed, yet you are fully supported 24/7

When you look at all these benefits, is it really any wonder that in a down-market these industries are rapidly surging ahead?