Learning Provider of the Year, Sponge, has won two awards at the Learning Technologies (LT) Awards 2019.
The company’s Senior Developer and Team Leader, Andrew Hosgood, picked up the silver award for Developer of the Year, while Sponge’s first Learning Experience Director (LExD), Liz Hardwell, took home the bronze award for Learning Designer of the Year. The awards were announced at a Gala Evening at Park Plaza Westminster Bridge Hotel in London on 27 November 2019.
In the citation for Developer of the Year, the LT Awards judges described Andrew as “one of life’s true problem solvers” and praised the “transformational” work that earned him the silver accolade in this prestigious category.
Andrew Hosgood, known as AJ, joined Sponge in 2015. He’s created a whole new specialism for bespoke web-based learning experiences, raising standards with UX and UI innovations that put users at the heart of digital learning.
Commenting on his win, AJ said: “For me, development is all about solving a problem from the human perspective. At Sponge, I’ve been able to put people at the heart of everything I create to make learning experiences better for them, and ultimately deliver better results for clients. Raising the bar through creative development is only possible thanks to the amazing team around me and our wonderful clients who share our passion for outstanding digital learning.”
"It's been a real pleasure to be allowed to explore new ideas at Sponge and push development in a way that I feel would be most beneficial for myself, the team, the company and the clients. It's a freedom that I don't see a lot of other companies offering and I feel privileged to be provided that space to explore. I’m excited for what we can achieve in the future, continued AJ."
A true pioneer of learning experience design
Liz Hardwell is Sponge’s first LExD and a true pioneer in her field. The LT Awards judges praised Liz for the relationship she builds with clients, calling her engagement approach “skilled” and “impressive.”
Liz said: “I feel hugely privileged to work with clients to truly get under the skin of their organisation, learning culture and what makes their people tick. It's a thrill to design learning experiences that balance the needs of my stakeholders and learners - and ultimately benefit the entire business. I thrive on this creative and collaborative approach with my clients and incredible Sponge team. I’m delighted to be recognised for doing something I love.”
Sponge’s founder and managing director, Louise Pasterfield, praised the winners: “Huge congratulations go out to AJ and Liz. We’re thrilled to see their skills and creativity rewarded at this prestigious event in the highly competitive categories of Developer of the Year and Designer of the Year.
"We’re incredibly proud of our hard-working and highly talented people here at Sponge – it’s what sets us apart in the digital learning industry. Its thanks to the calibre of our team that we’re able to deliver multiple award-winning solutions for our clients – some of the world’s largest brands.”
Sponge’s success at this year’s Learning Technologies Awards follows last year’s success which saw Sponge named Learning Technologies Company of the Year silver winner. The company was recently acquired by private equity firm, Aliter Capital, joining leading LMS provider, Bolt Learning, in creating a major new force in the learning technology market.
Louise added, “Being part of a larger learning group means we now have access to an even greater pool of talent via Bolt Learning. These skills, coupled with a more extensive products and solutions portfolio, means we’re able to offer our clients an even better experience going forward”.
The LT Awards is an international scheme, celebrating outstanding learning technologies and showcasing the industry’s best global talent. The awards are independently judged by the Elearning Network and Towards Maturity and received more than 400 entries in 2019.