Tips & Tricks: Providing "generic" instructions to avoid maintenance nightmares. Do you have suggestions?

I don't know about you, but sometimes I feel like I spend more time maintaining courses than I do building them.  I'm interested in any tips or tricks that you use to avoid re-recording audio.  (Sorry, but not having audio is rarely an option.)  One of my pet peeves is when a website gets updated and you have to update navigation instructions.  So rather than having step-by-step audio instructions on navigating a website, I might say, "Navigate to the Risk Profiles using the instructions show here."  I list the instructions on the screen and if needed include screenshots.  (And no, having a direct hyperlink is not an option either - we want to teach them how to fish...)

Do you have any suggestions on avoiding maintenance issues?  Thanks!

3 Replies
Daniel Brigham

Hi, Penny:

A few thoughts, though perhaps more general than your original question:

1. "Modularize" your training--that is, package it in small units, so if one process changes, you can limit the damage/maintenance to that one unit (hopefully).

2. Consider other formats (pdf, Word) for training material that's likely to change often.

3. Don't use audio for navigation instructions. I stopped doing that like four years ago, as many have in elearning. Sounds as if a higher up wants it that way, even though it's not all that efficient. I know, I have to pick your battles.

Best, Daniel


Mohammad  Hassam

Hi Penny,

I completely understand your frustration as I've been in your shoes few months ago. The only solution I came up with was not to record instructions as they keep on changing. But, as you said, not having audio is rarely an option. I start adding two slides before the  instructions or simulation and one after.

Slide one : Objectives
Slide two: Scenario - optional
Last slide - Congratulations

Note: Above are the only slides that have audio. The rest will have callouts.

Reason: The website or processess are keep on changing so, it's better to add callouts than re-record the whole the thing.