42 to 142 hours = 1 hour of digital learning content

L&D professionals are always looking for more insight on training development processes and efficiencies. Since the digital transformation of L&D is now seriously taking off, the development of digital learning content has taken centre stage.

Karl Kapp executed the first research into the time it takes to develop 1 hour of learning in 2003. He defined different types of training, including instructor-led training (ILT), e-learning, and simulations. But also the levels of interaction within the training. The data was presented using the average “lowest development hours” and “highest development hours.”

In 2009, the research was done once more, including several enhancements such as new authoring tools and simulations of soft skills.

In 2017, the research was reprised once more, now with redefined categories of interactions, and a simplification of the overall survey. Respondents to the 2017 study answered two questions. The first question was what types of training respondents used, from a design and development aspect. The second question asked respondent to share how long it typically takes them to develop one hour of instruction.

The only categories of learning content development that went consistently down over the years are digital learning with a limited, complex and real-time level of interaction. Still today, the most basic form of digital learning, with a passive level of interaction, requires a solid working week for one person to develop 1 hour of training content.

From the hours spent on learning content development, it becomes clear that digital learning takes up close to 75% of the time spent.

You can read more about the research here.

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