News story

Digital creative marketplace to transform elearning

UKLearning NewsJam Pan

A new marketplace of app developers, games designers and video producers is set to rescue elearning from itself and to give a boost to how L&D sources creative skills.

David Wood, Founder of Jam Pan: challenging elearning design to bring it into today’s digital creative era
David Wood, Founder of Jam Pan: challenging elearning design to bring it into today’s digital creative era 

Jam Pan, a new marketplace for learning projects, has created a marketplace of digital creative professionals to help L&D managers to re-shape elearning into a product that better meets the needs of their businesses and learners.

“Technology and creativity is driving our daily lives faster than any other point in our lifetimes, yet as a buyer of elearning I saw the same diet of solutions on offer time and time again, no matter the subject or target audience. Something didn’t stack up,” commented David Wood, founder of Jam Pan. “You can learn limitless skills via the web, yet in the company you work you often find yourself constrained by a bulky internal network, sitting through a structured, sometimes un-engaging piece of so called learning.”

David Wood established Jam Pan to right two wrongs in how elearning has evolved. Firstly that elearning evolved from moving face-to-face ‘PowerPoint-based’ training into an online format using traditional L&D skills and mentalities.

“The L&D and creative digital sector have somehow managed to miss each other,” points out Jam Pan founder David Wood. “Elearning really needs the input of the best creative talents, we have to make learning more relevant to learners and stakeholders expectations of digital solutions. In the 20th century people used to love going on courses, then elearning arrived and it became a chore!”

Jam Pan draws on the UK’s creative sector in video production, gaming and app development, combining these with performance and solution-focused learning managers to create a new kind of hard-hitting elearning that really delivers.

Elearning’s second ‘wrong’ was that by narrowing its talent pool to L&D’s past, elearning development is often too expensive.

“Jam Pan first enables learning buyers to properly define a performance need. Jam Pan releases the project to its marketplace. The marketplace is a bid-based, competitive environment, able to produce possible solutions from an array of differing agencies across the creative sector: apps developers, games designers, video producers and elearning companies, to name a few.” added David Wood.

David Wood refers to the popular science author and media theorist, Steven Johnson’s work, to help explain why he created Jam Pan. In his TEDtalk ‘Where Good ideas come from’, Steven presents the notion that different ideas, different backgrounds and different skills are essential in challenging the norm and solving problems: “Elearning has operated outside this notion, stuck in an instructional design past. It’s not using the the different tools and skills that everyone else uses to develop great communications and great learning. Where are the marketeers in L&D?; where are the games designers in L&D?; where are the video producers, app developers, artists and animators in L&D?,” demands David Wood. “From the outset, we wanted to create an environment that brought these kinds of skills and services into elearning.”

“Authoring tools have defined what elearning has become. Too many elearning solutions simply look the same, based on the narrow templates and design standards contained in the authoring tools. Elearning can be so much more than this.”

Elearning authoring tools will be the demise of elearning,” predicts David. “Jam Pan’s marketplace challenges elearning design to bring it into today’s ‘digital creative era’. It contains skills in creating TV ads, children’s programmes, online games and mobile apps, viral social campaigns. This is where elearning will more likely find its future: L&D working with digital creative professionals to create new solutions to its needs.”

Video trailers and tasters of past projects that have embraced the creative sector are available on Jam Pan’s website:

Projects currently open and awaiting shortlisting on Jam Pan include a £5,000 Video/Animation Explainer and a £25,000 - £30,000 developer project. More details are available via