How can you become a noteworthy SME?
Subject matter experts(SMEs) are at the core of elearning.
The subject matter experts indeed guide the IDs what is to be included in course modules.
But since SMEs have a lot of job responsibility in elearning companies, they need to consider some questions. They should be clearheaded in their minds about such questions. But an SME needs to choose the correct niche. An SME might be an IT expert who has all the knowledge about the working of the software. You need to consider some questions before you decide what is the niche in which you have expertise:
- Know why do you want to become an SME
- Work on your niche
- Do some research about the way the learning and development industry works
- Find out about the SME training required
You need to know why do you want to become an SME. Is it because you have such a wealth of knowledge and use it to want to make quick money. The reality is that although you want to become a subject matter expert, you need time for it. You need to have some goals in your career. The aim of a subject matter expert should be to allow organizations to help learners imbibe knowledge from your interesting content.
It’s important to know what your specialist skills are? You need to check your strength and weakness. Apart from your niche expertise, you must have the ability to work with the IDs because they implement what you know. That’s why having a niche is important because problems will arise when you work with IDs and don’t have knowledge about any topic. You should therefore have a roadmap for improvement when it comes to your chosen niche topic. Also, you might choose your niche and develop it depending on what is the skillset which has a target audience.
The niche should be something that you are interested in. You should research all the topics that interest you and whether they are worth investing your time and money in. This depends on their demand in the market. If a topic is riveting enough for you that you are willing to talk to others about it and partake in discussions, then it’s worth being your niche. Also, you must have complete mastery of the topic and be able to communicate the benefits.
You might have chosen your niche, but there is no guarantee that employees need to be trained about it. Does this niche feature in the goals of the organization. Check out the learning and development industry to see if your idea is of any use. Has the organization recruited any learning and development professionals to impart training about this topic? Does your niche’s article ever feature on the online discussion forums of the company or the company website? Are there article directories that have enough content about the topic?
You might have to undergo some extra training to assume the role of an SME for some niches. For example, some certifications might be needed so that companies don’t have to bear any compliance risks. Compliance risks can arise because the company will train the employees based on the learning material you help in developing. Therefore, if any certification is needed before you can truly be called a subject matter expert in your chosen field, then you should know about the same. As an SME, if you are planning to start an elearning consultancy, know what is the training required to embark on the same role.
So, before you start working as an SME, you need to work on your core strengths, so that you have true demand in the elearning companies.