The conceptualisation of e-Learning at the public sector

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The South African public sector is faced with many challenges and one of the major challenges is service delivery. This is linked with skills shortage resulting in public service having too many people to train in a short period of time. Training these many employees face-to-face has its challenges, as employees have to be away from their day-to-day duties to attend training and this not only has an impact on productivity, but also maximizes costs. To deal with and to minimize these challenges, the South African government has chosen to introduce e-Learning in public sector. This is aimed at ensuring that larger numbers of government officials are trained at minimum costs and ensuring that training reaches people with different responsibilities such as top management and people with families who cannot afford to be away from home or office for training for long periods of time. This study examined the advantages and disadvantages of the introduction of e-Learning in the public sector, the importance of strategic planning for e-Learning, the challenges faced by the public sector when it comes to training, how other organizations internationally have conceptualized e-Learning and what the public sector is hoping to achieve by introducing e-Learning. The gaps in the conceptualization of e-Learning in the South African public sector were identified and possible solutions including a paradigm shift from a reductionist way of thinking to a systems way of thinking and doing things was recommended.

Keywords: e-Learning, public sector, benchmarking, conceptualization.
JEL Classification: H83, A2, G21

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