University of Lincoln

Redesigning mandatory online training with customised content from Learning Pool

Learning Pool helped the University of Lincoln roll out a new LMS, together with a range of off-the-shelf content libraries to make their mandatory online training up-to-date and more relevant.


It was a University forged by the will of a community, rather than a government directive, and was the first new city centre campus to be built in the UK for decades. The Times Good University Guide described it as “the most dramatic transformation of a University in recent times”, and Her Majesty the Queen opened the first University building on the Brayford Campus in 1996.

£170m has now been invested in the campus, transforming a brownfield site into an award-winning, state-of-the-art learning environment for the thousands of students who pass through its doors every year. The University plans to spend a further £130m to improve the student experience further over the next few years.

What we did
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The Challenge

Working within the HR department at the University, the Organisational Development (OD) team wanted to refresh their range of online mandatory training courses, as well as the Learning Management System (LMS) that housed them. They were also looking to provide a new range of customised courses that offered staff a more blended approach to some of their existing workshops. Finally, they wanted to create their own bespoke content in a cost-effective way.

The Solution

The OD team worked with Learning Pool to roll out a new LMS, together with a range of off-the-shelf content libraries that mapped to their original content. The OD team worked with key stakeholders across different areas of the University to ensure the new content met the University’s needs. It was imperative to work quickly to get the LMS and mandatory courses up and running so that the service to internal customers was not impacted and that mandatory training targets were upheld.

In addition to the eight mandatory training modules that were redesigned and relaunched; 35 new custom modules were also rolled out to expand the blended learning approach. These modules were designed to complement existing workshops and allowed staff to engage with a larger variety of learning interventions to support their development and career progression plans. These courses were made up of content from the Learning Pool library and were reviewed by the subject owners and amended to ensure the content was specific to their needs and reflected University branding.

Lastly, the OD team took on the Adapt builder, becoming more self-sufficient in terms of developing their own elearning in-house. The team has been able to expand its offering of bespoke interventions, including online appraisals and they are also set to launch Career Pathways using the programme’s functionality.

The Response

Katie Willson
Organisational Development Trainer

Working with Learning Pool has been a refreshing and positive experience; they have provided us with a variety of options to meet our University and staff needs. They work closely with us to understand our staff, culture, and aims and provide solutions that are relevant. We have a fantastic working relationship with our Learning Consultant to continually improve our systems and offering. We also engage with the local and national Learning Pool events to learn from other sectors and share best practices. Our success is aligned to the ‘technology’ vision noted within our Dynamic Engaged People Plan. ‘Accessible services and innovative technologies’, as well as our ‘Continuous Development’ vision ‘creates flexible opportunities to access development enhancing experiences’.

The Outcome

Feedback has been positive around the new modules and LMS. Staff have commented on how the content looks better, is simpler to navigate and easier to understand. The new optional customised modules have been well received as these are now accessible in advance of having to wait for future workshops, allowing them to engage with more people and in a timelier manner.

The percentage of completion of mandatory modules now stands at 89%, an increase compared to the old content/system, demonstrating a higher level of engagement from staff.

Having the ability and skills to develop bespoke modules in-house also means the OD team can respond to business needs in a quicker and more cost-effective way, compared to commissioning through an external provider.

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