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10 online business courses worth considering

By Anthony Fensom

3 min read

Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) have emerged in recent years as a user-friendly method of learning, particularly for time-poor small business owners. While feedback and certification usually requires a fee, the content itself is free.

Here are 10 of the best currently available courses from Australia and overseas to improve your business know-how.

1. Introduction to financial accounting

Institution: University of Pennsylvania, Wharton School of Business

This was last year’s most popular business course on Coursera, and is one of the leading MOOCs in business. This course teaches you foundation level accounting, and the skills required to analyse your business’s financial statements – both essential abilities to managing a business.

The course requires five-to-six hours a week of study over the four-week semester.

2. Introduction to marketing

Institution: University of Pennsylvania, Wharton School of Business

Another course in the Ivy League college’s ‘Business Foundation Specialization’ series, it covers the key marketing elements of branding, customer centricity and go-to-market strategies, taught by faculty members of one of the world’s leading marketing schools.

The course requires five to six hours of study per week over four weeks.

3. Strategy

Institution: Michigan State University (MSU), Broad College of Business

Part of the ‘How to Start Your Own Business’ series offered by MSU, this course specifically focuses on strategies for small business management, making this one of the most relevant courses to small business owners.

The course follows the completion of the other courses in the series, which focus more on the startup phase of a business.

4. Recruiting, hiring and onboarding employees

Institution: University of Minnesota, Carlson School of Management

Part of the ‘Human Resource Management’ series offered by Carlson, this course focuses on one of the more complex, frequent and important functions of HR – attracting, choosing and keeping the right staff. The theories are essential to preventing costly employee turnover.

The organizers suggest three-to-five hours of study per week over the four-week course.

5. Marketing analytics: price and promotion analytics

Institution: University of California at Berkley, Haas School of Business

From another of the world’s leading universities, this course teaches small business owners the influence different pricing and promotion strategies can have upon an organization’s success. It also teaches the important skill of efficiently allocating scare marketing budgets.

The four-week course requires around five to seven hours of study per week.

6. Leading from the emerging future

Institution: Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)

While not teaching business-specific theories, the course focuses on improving your leadership, observational and innovative traits, with an eye on the future. MIT is renowned for its entrepreneurial alumni, so small business owners should benefit greatly from its insights.

For this eight-week course, the organizers suggest five to 10 hours of study per week.

7. Introduction to business in Asia

Institution: Griffith University

Closer to home, this Australian course focuses on a theme central to all Australian business – how to successfully work and build relationships with businesses in Asia, while navigating social and cultural differences.

The four-week course recommends around two to four hours study per week.

8. Entrepreneurial opportunities

Institution: University of Adelaide

Learning practical techniques to evaluate entrepreneurial ideas and unlock your inner creativity and innovation, this course focuses on sharpening and bolstering the entrepreneurial mindset of small business owners.

The five-week course has recommended a weekly workload of just two-to-three hours.

9. Services marketing – selling the invisible

Institution: University of New South Wales

With a focus on application rather than theory, this course equips owners of service businesses with the tools to effectively market their service to consumers, including service-specific branding and marketing mixes.

This course is self-paced, meaning there is no specific enrolment dates or time restrictions.

10. Introduction to project management

Institution: University of Adelaide

This course focuses on a skill relevant to any industry, as it focuses on the ability to plan, scope, schedule, cost and manage a project from commencement to completion.

This course is also self-paced, meaning there are no specific time restrictions.

With learning now a lifelong occupation, small business owners can improve competitiveness by tapping into the online knowledge revolution available at your desk.

To read more articles related to QuickBooks online Australia, visit here.

Information may be abridged and therefore incomplete. This document/information does not constitute, and should not be considered a substitute for, legal or financial advice. Each financial situation is different, the advice provided is intended to be general. Please contact your financial or legal advisors for information specific to your situation.

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