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GE brings good skills to life

In a huge corporate e-learning initiative, General Electric will consolidate its training into a single platform for 300,000 employees and contractors speaking many different languages.

Under the new contract, a learning management system (LMS) from Plateau Systems will serve as a core enterprise software application at GE, managing learning processes in major business units on five continents. The Plateau 4 LMS offering will replace numerous division systems.

Bob Corcoran, GE's chief learning officer, explains, "A single-instance LMS enables us to provide real-time tracking and 'global touch' with all our employees and partners for purposes of training them in the skills they need. Utilization of a common catalog within this tool enables us to leverage core training throughout the organization."

As the engine behind GE's internal myLearning@ge Web site, the solution allows personnel worldwide to access their learning plans in multiple languages, including Chinese, Dutch, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Hungarian, Portuguese, Polish and Spanish. All of those languages are supported on a single database and application server.

According to a recent press release from Plateau, students access the system by signing onto their personal development page, which shows them their curriculum, allows them to schedule and launch learning events and to select courses. Administrators use the system to schedule Web-based or classroom instruction and manage the resources, logistics and finances that support training. They also can mine the database to assess the skills of personnel to determine in real time the best people for a given task.

The learning management system is interfaced with many software applications at GE, which allows the corporation to integrate learning with its business processes, increasing production, reducing time to competency and enabling executives to align learning with strategic business objectives, Plateau says.

Corcoran adds, "We have been operating on a single-instance HRIS (human resource information system) platform for several years. By interfacing Plateau with this core application for our employee information, we are expanding automation in the HR processes at GE."

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