Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Client eLearning Re-visited

A few weeks back I lamented the paucity of good examples of eLearning for clients / potential clients, and then posted some examples of client eLearning that folks had sent to me the following week. And then recently I was sent an email from the bank (Scotiabank) I criticized in my original posting on this subject, noting that they had changed their online client education efforts quite substantially. Their new initiative is called MyVault, and it certainly is an improvement over what they had done previously (i.e. sending me to sites that were collections of PDF downloads very similar to things they had already sent me in the mail).

They had obviously been working hard on improving their client eLearning efforts long before I leveled my criticisms, so I cannot take any credit for the turn-around. But what a turn-around it has been. MyVault provides users with an array of online resources to personalize their own financial education, and online interactive tools with which to make key financial calculations and decisions.

Specifically, MyVault is organized around five key areas as follows:

My News
  • You can select which general and financial news sources you wish to access
  • You can sign up for RSS feeds you wish to be delivered to your "vault"
My Plans
  • You have access to a personal calendar, to-do list, cash flow tool, and links to various documents that you have saved while navigating the site
My Library
  • You have access to all issues of the bank's newsletters, various financial articles, podcasts, and a financial glossary
  • You can read advice from financial advisors and submit topics you want them to cover
My Community
  • You can join online discussions on a number of financial topics (e.g. investing, borrowing, home ownership, taxes, etc.)
My Tools
  • You can use a number of interactive tools to do various personal financial calculations (e.g. retirement savings plan, net worth, optimal mortgage payment schedule, mortgage comparisons, rent vs. own calculations, manageable debt load)
MyVault goes way beyond the digital brochure approach that most organizations use for their client education initiatives. It allows the user to personalize their learning experience and to better understand complex financial processes by interacting with easy-to-use online tools. This is a great value-add and has the effect of engaging both existing and potential clients much more deeply than just reading standard and static marketing materials. On top of this, Scotiabank has created an attractive, colourful and easy-to-navigate interface for MyVault (very non-bank like....see above).

Think about this approach for your organization. Are there ways that you could provide a more personal, interactive and educational experience for your clients and those you wish to attract as clients?


Blogger B.J. Schone said...

Thanks for sharing this great example, Rick. I do believe this qualifies as a Personal Learning Environment - a term with a ton of buzz around it right now. I haven't seen many examples of PLEs that have been built for the masses (employees, customers, etc.). (I have only seen PLEs that are homegrown mashups that people create for themselves.)

There's a great list of links related to PLEs in an article by Tony Karrer. Check it out...

11:42 AM  
Blogger Rick Nigol said...

Hi B.J.,

I never thought about this example as a PLE, but given its flexibility in allowing the user to determine what is important to him/her and to permanently save certain learnings, it could probably fit that definition.



11:52 AM  

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