Besides training, managers can use the data reported by an LMS and use the same for data driven learning decisions for their teams and the organisation as a whole. All in all, a LMS provides a deep understanding of the employee’s ability to learn, grow, and train further.
There has been a tremendous increase in the adoption of learning management systems for different corporate trainings. This comprehensive guide will look at different aspects of an enterprise learning management system, integration of Artificial Intelligence, and more which may help you in taking the right decision.
What are Learning Management Systems (LMS) and their relevance in today’s scenario?
Companies using a learning management system experience a 78% gain in competitive advantage. Using an LMS system is essential because you cannot expect mentors and coaches to interact with every employee and provide the required training.
Moreover, 68% of employees currently working in organisations want to spend time learning on-premises rather than spend additional time at home. Further, 58% prefer to learn at their own pace, which means that the medium of delivering education must be changed.
As the name suggests, Learning Management System (LMS) is a system intended for delivery of training and education to a wide range of employees, contractors, vendors and extended workforce. LMS are often referred to as enterprise learning management systems (ELMS), corporate learning management systems (CLMS), e-learning platforms, training or learning platform.It is a platform for organisations to enhance their training and development through which they can design, deliver and measure the achieved learning.
Why do corporates use a Learning Management System?
Corporates use a learning management system to handle and manage the lifecycle of the learning process within the organisation. These systems are a must-have for any business looking to implement either a blended learning program or a complete online learning program.
LMSs are also used by businesses to create online courses that train and educate their workforce. For course building, some LMSs require a separate authoring tool, while others allow you to build directly on their platform.
Learning management systems (LMS) are used by learning & development teams to store, organise, and distribute courses to their employees as needed. Employees use the LMS interface to take courses and provide feedback. Administrators can track employee progress, see data, and re-calibrate learning programs with a good LMS for optimal impact.
How can an LMS Impact Workforce Training and Learning?
Build employee engagement
Gallup finds that over the last 20 years, the employee engagement levels have been stagnant at 13%. Organisations suffering from this issue lose not only valuable customers but also revenue, the potential to grow, and opportunities.On the other hand, an engaged employee is much more profitable in terms of the value they bring to the company. Engaged employees facilitate a 233% increase in customer loyalty and a 26% increase in annual revenue.That’s the difference a LMS can facilitate by creating an engaged workforce. By using an LMS, organisations can ensure that employees are more vested in the workings and growth of the business. It helps provide goal-specific training, microlearning, and gamified learning to make the process easier, interactive, and fun.
High employee turnover is unfavourable for a company. The average cost of staff turnover is $2500. So, the best possible thing for a company to save this cost is to retain the existing workforce and reduce attrition wherever necessary.An LMS can substantially reduce attrition through multiple aspects, including ongoing training and onboarding. Employees that face an inappropriate onboarding experience are more likely to be disengaged.You can use an LMS to provide a role based interactive onboarding program that gets all new employees to a good start. Start with a baseline introduction to ensure that all employees are on the same page, then provide personalised training tailored to each employee’s specific position.You can also use dedicated learning paths to deliver the exact content and materials your employees want according to their preferences. You can provide audio files, written content, and video lessons.
Build leadership skills
A large number of millennial employees (78%) share an opinion that companies need to build strong leadership skills in them. They want more development opportunities and the right culture to move ahead smoothly in the organisation.Companies that lack such a setting can use a LMS to create one and ensure effective employee training in terms of leadership skills. A LMS enables them to apply such habits to their professional development, allowing them to advance their talents.Organisations can create LMS courses that millennials can access from any device, then structure them into learning paths that include certifications and particular outcomes. This could be one of the ways organisations can leverage an LMS to provide specialised abilities training, such as leadership skills, to employees. Mentors, both with and outside the organisations can be made accessible through the LMS which will ensure that leaders are guided properly and they enhance in their professional journey.
Optimize learning cost
Compared to traditional learning methods, building a learning management system (LMS) saves time and money for a company.Its important to strike the right balance between the traditional ways of training & digital training. Digital trainings, with the use of LMS, helps in ensuring larger groups of employees are trained thus reducing the cost. Its just not the direct cost of training but also the reduction in the time required to analyse training data in a traditional training vs digital training, which is a big benefit to the corporates.
Who are the users of a Corporate Learning Management System?
A corporate LMS makes it easier for all types of enterprises to grow without incurring excessive costs and losing productivity.
Majorly, three kinds of roles are associated with the use of an LMS:
An administrator can look after the entire LMS ecosystem while ensuring that the users have access. Administrators can set access control permissions, generate reports for the managers, and manage any other task thrown at them related to the LMS. These are typically done by either someone in the Learning Team of the organisation or supported by the partner who is providing the LMS. Through the data available on the platform, the Learning Team is able to take the right learning decisions for their employees.
Author and Coaches
Authors and coaches are the people who build or upload courses on the LMS for the employees. Hence, choose a tool supports various types of content and also can help you build courses within the LMS software.
These are people who will use the LMS for learning and training purposes.
A learning management system is an ultimate tool to create an efficient, productive and trained workforce. Artificial intelligence (AI) is one of the fastest-growing and most exciting fields.There is a lot of buzz around this technology right now and how it is and will help shape the future. With the basic introduction of the system covered, we will move on to understand the role of Artificial Intelligence in learning management and the difference it brings to the table.
How is AI disrupting LMS space?
Gone are the days when Artificial Intelligence (AI) was a glorified technology meant only for the movies. Today, AI has disrupted almost every aspect of our lives. Learning is one of the sectors where AI is making a big difference in how learning can be made more effective and impactful with minimum human intervention.
For a learning management system, AI’s inclusion can lead to better “everything.” This includes:
- Creating, Curating & Converting smart content
- Communication and intelligent analytics
- Personalised Learning Recommendations
- AI based Learning BOTs
- Intelligent tutoring systems
- Automating administrative tasks
All these attributes can directly help a user become better while they enjoy learning through the LMS. AI helps build an improvised and personalised online learning community by offering the following benefits:
Creating, curating & converting smart content
Smart content or dynamic content is a personalised form of learning material or courses created with AI at the helm. We can use the technology to develop digitised guides, and learning resources in various formats. Besides being smart, the content created can be personalised to suit a user’s learning standards, behavior, capabilities, and style. Personalisation and smarter content ensure that the learner is more engaged and, as a result, has a higher level of interest in the training session. Furthermore, translation tools allow the same module content to be translated into many languages, advantageous for multilingual teams. In this approach, each trainee’s learning experience may be tailored to their specific needs. Lastly, an AI-based learning content creation and facilitation system can assist learners by enhancing their involvement. It can curate or summarize conversations that would be used by a human instructor to steer students towards the aims and objectives of a course.
Communication and analytics
A learning management system integrated with AI can improve the communication between students and trainer. As AI-based educational solutions improve it will allow organisational training systems to accomplish more than ever before. Based on the learner behaviour the AI based LMS can send smart notifications to the learners on their learnings on LMS with a focus on enhancing the learning completion as well as learning effectiveness.AI can also streamline a lot of administrative tasks for the L&D team as well as trainers. A lot of workflows can be automated. This offers more time to trainers and coaches.With the use of AI, the learning teams can get intelligent learning analytics, which otherwise would not have been possible or time consuming for them. This helps them in taking the right learning decisions for their employees.
Personalised learning recommendations
By using predictive computing, AI can analyse a learner’s habits and propose the most efficient learning schedule for them. Instead of predetermined pathways, the learner takes more control over the direction of their learning.AI gathers data to determine a learner’s knowledge of specific skills, then creates a constantly evolving learning pathway for him/her to take. This adaptive learning approach ensures that the learning is personalised and effective.
AI based Learning BOTs
The AI based LMS can have learning BOTs. Learners don’t need to get in touch with their learning teams for any query related to their learning. The AI based Learning BOTs can help the learners in identifying their skill gap, knowing what to learn next, getting content curated as per their need as well as analyse their learning performance.
Universal access is a term that gained its true meaning after developing technologies that help share everything without territorial limitations. In terms of education and training, an AI-based LMS can further improve the impact and extent of accessibility. From sharing the material with any number of users to developing it in different languages and contexts, such an LMS is much more effective in improving learning outcomes. So, any silos that block access to materials and content sharing can be easily removed with AI’s integration in an LMS.
Intelligent Tutoring Systems
With a lot of training happening in a virtual mode, use of Ai helps in creating smart tutoring systems. In a live virtual session, the systems can do emotional analysis to find which all participants are engaged and which not. This helps the trainers to take the right decisions to ensure that despite being in a virtual mode, he is able keep the engagement level to as close as a physical classroom. Furthermore, it can also be leveraged to build pure virtual tutoring systems. By replicating voice recordings or generating holograms or avatars i.e. using VR, and adding the AI layer where the system analyzes the learning behaviour of the trainee and adapts the VR based training as per the trainees performance. This significantly automates the training delivery process by reducing human involvement. It also ensures that employees can learn at their own pace.
Automating administrative tasks
In an organisation, a trainer can be playing different roles other than imparting lessons to a batch of employees. This means their hands are already full. If we add the administration of managing a learning system, it can only complicate the management of functions. An LMS integrated with AI capabilities can ease the trainer’s burden and lighten the workload. Things like grading assessments take a lot of time for any trainer or coach. The AI based LMS can grade just not text based assessments but also audio and video based assessments. As AI automates administrative work, coaches have more time to spend with the employees they are training.
An AI-based LMS is much more effective than a traditional learning management system. The former cannot be personalised; it is templated and cannot cater to specific learner’s needs. On the other hand, an AI-based smart enterprise learning management system can be personalised. It can be enriched with specific content and provide a smart way to execute the entire learning process.
Open Source v/s Proprietary LMS
There are two types of LMS platforms you can get, open-source and proprietary. You can choose the best one for your organisation and its workings, but deciding that requires an understanding of the same.
In this part, we will talk about open source and proprietary LMS along with their pros and cons, which should help you choose.
Open Source LMS
An open-source LMS software means that its source code is freely available on the web, and anyone (primarily programmers) can modify the same to add, edit, and customise the platform. The overall advantage with open source software is that it can be moulded to develop an appropriate form for the business.
In this case, for an LMS, an open-source solution can be enhanced with new features and capabilities. Furthermore, the testing part is also completed with the help of open collaboration between developers, testers, and quality analysts.
Since the source code is available without any limitations, usually, it’s a community effort that helps change the outcome of the software. The best part is that the source code is available at zero cost.
However, if you want to make changes to the existing source code extracted from the community, you will have to pay the programmer for making the changes.
Pros of Open-Source LMS
Open source software is usually free to use. Users don’t have to pay to access the source code because it is openly available on the web. You can get the code and put minimal effort into getting the LMS created. Using an open-source LMS can result in significant cost reductions, especially for enterprises on a limited budget. You pay for the cloud hosting of the platform.
Flexibility in Development
Users of open-source software do not face vendor lock-ins as they would in a proprietary platform. If there are unnecessary features and functions, they can be removed, and new ones can be added. This is because the source code might be changed at any time, and users are not required to follow the provider’s guidelines.
Cons of Open-Source LMS
Open source means anyone can access the source code and inject a harmful code script. While good developers will be looking after these elements, an openly accessible source code can be modified anytime. Using LMS portals of this nature can make the organisation vulnerable to issues like identity theft, unauthorised transfers, and other malicious attacks. The organisations might need to put in extra efforts to make the platform more secure.
Not all open-source solutions are user-friendly and intuitive. While we can say that many of them are great in terms of usability and appearance, the same cannot be said for every type of open-source software. It may happen that the developers who worked on the software did not pay too much attention to the graphics and user interface appearance. So it won’t be easy for non-technical users or developers with less experience to find their way around a substandard GUI.
Open source software needs more maintenance, probably from an in-house team. With the need for maintenance, there will be hidden costs that you will have to account for. If there is an in-house team, things can be handled efficiently; hiring a third party for the same work can cost more.
Proprietary Cloud-Based Learning Management System
Proprietary software does not have a publicly available source code. For this type of LMS, the source code is a confidential document, many times IPR of the provider, which can only be accessed, managed, controlled, and modified by the company that has generated the code.
In other words, the software is produced and tested by the individual or group that owns it rather than by the general public. Anyone who uses a proprietary LMS has to pay for the usage part.
Users are given a valid and authenticated licence to use this software by the company.
Pros of Proprietary Cloud-Based LMS
Functionality is Top Notch
Most of the proprietary solutions are built for revenue generation. To make them profitable, the developers put in every effort to make the solutions stellar. Hence, you will get superior functionality with such software. Also, you have to pay either a one-time cost or a subscription fee to use the same. All in all, you will be working with easy-to-use software without putting in any extra effort.
Lower Maintenance Cost
Mostly, proprietary learning management systems receive regular updates from the service provider. These maintenance and updates are included in the price you are paying for using the service. This means that your maintenance cost with these systems is relatively less.
A proprietary service vendor sets up a customer support system that helps users with any issues they face. Besides the ready-to-use customer support system, there is sufficient documentation available via blogs, tutorials, how-to guides, etc., for users to check out for troubleshooting.
No Technical expertise needed
Since the proprietary LMS is created and implemented by a partner who has developed the same, the organisation need not invest heavily in technical expertise to manage the platform or the cloud on which the same is hosted.
Use of Latest Technology
As the proprietary LMS are created for revenue generation, smart development partners ensure that they use the latest technology while creating the same. They ensure that the platform is secure as well as use latest technologies like Artificial Intelligence to create differentiation and solve key market problems.
Cons of Proprietary cloud based LMS
A proprietary LMS software will have recurring costs in a subscription fee. There can be an initial installation cost, which will give you access to the services provided. However, this does not give you the right to access the source code. You can only use the features and functions you have got according to the subscription plan.
There is a limit to the extent of customisations you can get with proprietary software as that would depend upon the provider to decide if they would like to customize the platform. There are some things that you can change, but you won’t have complete control and freedom to modify the software. Smart proprietary LMS analyse the market need and create a platform which takes care of maximum needs of the market.
So, Which One is Better?
There isn’t a straightforward answer here. Both types of LMS software have their distinct pros and cons. The usage and importance of the software changes with the requirements, budget, operational team, and other factors.
To make the choice between the two simpler, you must consider all your options and requirements and then move on to choosing the better one.
Use cases of LMS for corporates – What should you use them for?
Companies need to provide extensive training to their employees with a targeted approach. Most of the companies take a blended approach depending upon the skills to be imparted and the profile of the learner. A smart Learning Management System ( LMS) can be of immense support to the learning & development teams in ensuring learning through digital and blended mode. However, the success of an LMS software highly depends on how it is used for training and coaching purposes.
Surely, an LMS can be used to create and share, and impact training material and monitor the user’s progress. But in what sense and structure it is utilised needs to be discussed thoroughly.
This section will take you through different use cases of how a corporates can use an LMS.
New Hire Induction Training
A bad induction training would make new hires feel disheartened and thus affect the business as well as their motivation. On the other hand, a good induction training program would build a sense of belongingness among new recruits so that they would work with more passion and commitment. Many organisations have a common induction training program for all new joinees from various roles and functions. During these programs, you won’t be able to 100% customize the program basis the new joinees role & function. Also many a time people join in different locations and organisations conduct a formal induction training once you have a set of people onboarded. This delay may have an adverse effect. Using LMS, organisations can create role based function based induction trainings. These trainings can then be allocated to new joinees immediately on their joining the organisation basis their roles & functions making the same more relevant and effective for them.
Up-skilling of employees
With the digital revolution changing the nature of the workplace and workplace patterns, businesses have been forced to reconsider their staff upskilling options. Finding new skills for existing employees has become a necessity in an increasingly competitive world where startups are growing at unprecedented levels due to huge technological advances observed in recent years. Tools like LMS can help in assessing the skill gap of the employees and with integration of the LMS with third party content providers, companies are giving very personalised trainings for employees basis what skills are needed by them. With the right training content, corporate LMS can become a life long learning tool for an employee in the organisation.
New Product & Service Training
To grow business all organisations keep coming with new products, new version of existing products and new services. The product & the learning teams always have this challenge of ensuring that the last person in the sales or the service team is trained on these products & services in a consistent and minimum time. This is where LMS plays a roll through which the content can be created on the platform and disseminated to the distributed workforce ensuring that they are trained in a consistent manner and in the minimum time.
One of the core aspects of any business is that you need to teach and train the employees in terms of the rules, local/national laws, and compliances. This must be done to avoid costly fines and protect everyone’s safety.
More importantly, the employees must also stay up to date with the latest and upcoming compliance or practises. It is here that organisations can use an LMS to develop an understanding of the rules and compliances.
Many a times these rules and regulations are not easy to understand. They may be highly technical and include complicated jargon. All this may make reading and understanding them a nuisance or bit boring.
Companies can use an LMS to create interactive lessons for all these aspects, making it easier for the employees to understand everything. The deployment of employee-friendly compliance online training courses for your global workforce will assist in creating a knowledgeable & compliant workforce. The LMS can also be used to automate the compliance the compliance recertification at the required periodicity leading to a much reduced effort from compliance teams to track compliance training status.
On-The-Job Training & Coaching
Companies are wise to invest in the on the job training and coaching given by skilled mentors to employees since such a practice ensures that employees gain quality skills and knowledge that they can use on their future jobs.Few LMS also come with the feature of conducting on-the-job training as well as coaching. This ensures that all the information of the communication between the employee and the coach is documented and the flow of information is easier. AI plays a big role out here too. Basis data analysis of each employee the AI tool can recommend mentors and coaches for specific skills. Thus the LMS becomes one single destination for all training needs including coaching.
We can use an enterprise Learning Management System to provide training to the external sales channels and other brand partners. These team members are the face of the company. Training them on the products & services and on customer handling will have a positive impact of the company’s revenue & brand. You can, for example, provide online product knowledge training tools so that your sales crew is familiar with the features and benefits. These material will always be with them on their device through the LMS.
Your salespeople may also share the relevant information with customers, allowing them to make more educated purchasing decisions. With an LMS, corporates can share the same training material with employees across the borders.
This helps facilitate a homogeneous training material, leading to set similar standards and service quality in every region and country.
Classroom Training Management
Few enterprise LMS comes with integrated classroom management. This helps in effectively managing the various classroom training which any organisation might be conducting for their employees. From getting nominations to approval workflow to managing attendance and keeping the training material in digital forms can help both the learning teams as well as the employees. Learning teams can get the information about the trainings as well as feedbacks with a click of a button and the learners will always have the training material with them on their device for quick reference.
Learning Management Systems are beneficial to almost every department of an organisation, but it has much more to offer. Organisations can provide trainings to extended enterprise training via a corporate LMS solution to help the customers, vendors, and franchises learn more about the brand.
Customers can watch demo videos if they’re on the fence about buying your latest product, and franchisees can gain access to critical compliance tools to avoid penalties and appropriately reflect your brand image. The control on any updation of training material will always be with the corporate ensuring that only the current and the right information is viewed by the extended enterprise.
Key features of a Learning Management System (LMS)
There are tons of learning management systems you can use for employee training, but not all of them will be fit for your needs. One of the ways to identify an ideal LMS for your organisation is by looking at its features.
Although every organisation has different objectives to employ an LMS, most functions are the same. Keeping this in mind, we will be discussing the key features of an enterprise learning management software you must have in your chosen system.
On the Fly Analytics
Data is critical for monitoring employee learning and growth. Data analytics can be used to identify which training programs are most effective, allowing firms to maximize the value of their corporate learning budgets. Smart LMS capture detailed data on the fly and churn out smart insights which helps the trainers as well as the learning & development teams to take the right decisions for the employees. Few LMS also allow you to schedule reports & create your own reports on the platform. Choose an LMS that can help you generate comprehensive reports either in a templated form or by customising the same.
In a world where learners are looking for personalised training, it is imperative that you offer them the same. In traditional classroom settings, instructors can make efforts to ensure that training resources can be adapted to learner’s needs. However With LMS, you can ensure that your learners consume the content basis their profile as well as skill level. With technological advancements happening each day, it has become easier trainers to run personalised training through LMS that can ensure enhanced learning outcomes as well as a better learner experience.
Everyone learns differently. Some people learn by reading, others by listening and others by seeing. Gamification of learning combines all 3 methods of learning in a manner making learning more interesting and fun, creating interaction between learners for collaboration, and motivating them to learn. Usings smart LMS, this increases engagement with learners and ensures the knowledge is assimilated and retained. Achievement points, completion badges, user leaderboards and contests, can all be utilised in the gamification functions of the LMS.
The learning journey is a personalised path through the training content, which helps learners to achieve their learning goals. LMS should be able to create a combination of courses into a specific learning journey which the learners can consume in a specific manner.
These learning journeys can be created for specific skills for for people to learn new skills to move up the ladder in the organisation. The learning journey can be a combination of self-paced courses, classroom trainings as well as courses from MOOCs providers. LMS should be able to configure learning journey, allocate to users as well as capture the right analytics.
Device agnostic feature gives learners the flexibility to choose from any device. For example, a learner can enroll in a course from his/her desktop and continue watching modules on his/her tablet or mobile. Learners are also able to access their courses from multiple devices by using single sign in.
One of the features you must look at in an LMS is certificate management. As an organisation having in-house training programs, you should be able to create company-based certificates. By certifying your learners for successfully completing their training, you can give them a sense of accomplishment by tracking skills taught and certifications achieved. You should be able to create as well as upload digital certificates on the LMS and assign different certificates to different courses. As a result, you don’t need to waste time in awarding certificates of learners after they have completed a classroom training or a self-paced training.
Nowadays, live virtual training through trainers has become an integral part of the overall training plans. With live virtual training, attendees can participate from their home or office, avoiding the cost and time of travel for instructor-led classroom trainings.The issue is that the learners need to use a different tool for attending live classes.
Smart LMS , integrates various Live virtual tools so that trainers can create live trainings and learners can also access the live trainings through a single learning platform – LMS. This give a seamless experience to the learners and helps in managing the learning analytics from a single learning platform.
Integrations (including AI)
An LMS may have all the functions you need to execute a seamless training program. However, there may be a few instances where you need to integrate the LMS with another software.
So, choose an LMS that can be integrated as and when required. These integrations can be with Google Docs, Gmail, Salesforce, Slack, or any other solution.
Make sure to choose an LMS that can also integrate with AI solutions. Because artificial intelligence is going to be instrumental in almost every industry and solution, it is best to build a system around AI.
At times, sending a personalised message or notification can become the difference between taking the next lessons or ignoring them. Employees using the LMS for in-house training can also do so at their own pace. Sending notifications to all the users can help them stick to the learning plan.
Notification apps allow you to ensure that your employees finish their courses when new ones are added to the queue. Your LMS software’s notification system lets you develop and distribute motive-specific and dynamic notifications to specific users or audiences via email, the LMS portal, or even Slack connections.
Notifications are a must-have LMS tool whether you’re onboarding new workers, training clients or partners, or empowering your sales teams.
Remote Access and Control
Remote work is not a luxury or a once-in-a-month sort of benefit. For some companies, it has become a permanent setting. In this scenario, remote accessibility and controlling the permissions should be added to the must-have features of an LMS.
For firms with a global presence, on-site training may be cumbersome or even impossible. Thus, an LMS must provide remote or mobile-ready access to the training material to ensure that every employee has constant access to resources.
This will help ensure that companies can train their employees no matter where they are in the world. This sort of mobile-ready training program is particularly beneficial in the healthcare, construction, and retail industries. These are the industries where employees are frequently trained on the job.
Secondly, an LMS should also help you control the access of every user. Not every user is supposed to have access to all the training information. Some data is relevant to the trainers, some to the employees, directors, and so on. So, an LMS should take this hierarchy into account and let the administrator give access according to the user’s requirements.
Tools for in-app assessment
We have already talked about the reporting and data analytics part, but the in-app assessment tools are different. These tools are crucial to assess retention and comprehension of the employees using the software in terms of their ability to learn and come back for more.
An LMS should accommodate a variety of assessment tools, such as exam engines, simulations, and branching scenarios, to accomplish this. An LMS should allow educators to deliver immediate feedback to their students in addition to providing these exams.
Scheduling and calendar
With an in-built calendar and scheduling feature, the trainers can set premeditated dates for giving live lessons. The notifications feature allows the employees and learners to be notified about the upcoming lessons.
Furthermore, an LMS with the calendar feature can let the employees book dates or add a reminder to join the class on time. Trainers can set multiple dates and times for their training sessions within an LMS, including a smart scheduling feature.
Learners benefit from this flexibility since it ensures that vital training is available when ready, rather than requiring them to juggle numerous tasks while learning.
An LMS calendar configurability lets you view all the scheduled activities on a personal calendar. Some LMS also have the option to integrate a third-party calendar or Outlook into the system.
In-app messaging and communication
Integrating an LMS with a messaging app like Slack or Skype is one thing. But having an in-app messenger is much more convenient. So look for a corporate LMS that has an in-app messenger.
It will help the trainers and employees communicate freely without switching apps and sharing files easily.
Compliance and security
Compliance with government regulations or corporate policy is essential to achieve for a wide range of businesses. This involves ensuring that the right personnel is trained at the time. Plus, it will help ensure that the users are aware that the regulatory requirements are adequately assessed.
Besides ensuring employees’ understanding of the rules makes the company compliant, an LMS also needs to be secure and protect the user’s information. The safety and security of your company’s and your learners’ data should always come first.
As a result, it’s critical that you look for one that employs advanced security methods and complies with industry standards for cloud security and data privacy. Look for characteristics like Service organisation Control (SOC) 2 certification, GDPR compliance, and IS0 27001 certification.
Type of learning content in LMS
Having an LMS onboard has become a necessity rather than a gimmick to attract better talent in an organisational setup. Training employees help them become better performers, which ultimately results in more productivity and efficiency.
Planning for an effective training course means deciding the type of content or materials you will be sharing. A suitable enterprise learning management system can help you create, share, and record different types of content.
So, here are the different types of content you can facilitate with an LMS.
Making and sharing videos containing the course material is more engaging. It gets better traction than text and images alone. Two ways to include video content in your eLearning course are:
- Integrated Course Material: You can include videos of the courses and lessons, making it the sole educational resource. These videos and content can be added to your LMS from platforms like Udemy or Coursera.
- Embedded videos: Here, you will be creating your own videos. It can be created by a trainer for the specific purpose of training their workforce.
Giving your trainees a manual or a booklet to read is sometimes the simplest approach to disseminate information. One of its valuable features is that an administrator or trainer can attach documents to the interface of the corporate LMS.
Furthermore, it allows everyone to not only save critical papers online but also to access them quickly when needed with its downloadable feature.
Besides notes or books, you can also add learning journals, reports, studies, and other sorts of readable content through the LMS platform.
Sharing audio lessons and audible books is another way to share the course materials with the learners. The benefit of sharing this type of content via LMS portals is to give the learners freedom to learn and listen at their own time.
Presentations make it easy to digest and understand content with words and pictures combined. Whether it is a presentation created on Sharepoint, Microsoft Powerpoint, or even a Google Slides, you can add slide decks via the LMS to your content.
LMS has the option to attach individual files to the main learning center and help the employees access them from here. So, you can add the link or presentation file and give access to the learners.
Broadcasting or streaming is one of the advanced and latest functionalities you have in LMS software. Live sessions can be taken by the requisite personnel or trainers.
For sharing this type of content, choose a learning management system with this feature. The live session can be directed through Google Meet, Zoom, Microsoft Teams, or other third-party solutions. However, prefer choosing a corporate LMS that lets you conduct live sessions with an in-app function.
You can also provide access to selected podcasts via an LMS. You can either provide the link to an existing podcast recorded and shared by another party or create one specifically for the employees in the house. Podcasts cannot be created via an LMS, but you can create one from relevant platforms and integrate here.
Simply reading textual documents and pdf or watching video after video might be tedious, which discourages the employees from continuing to learn.
Dialogue simulation is an innovative technique to incorporate interactivity into the learning process. A dialogue simulation mimics real-life scenarios in which each option has consequences that result in varied outcomes. It’s also a good way to train people in customer service and sales skills in a risk-free setting.
You can get pre-recorded versions or record the same for different scenarios related to the type of training you are providing.
AR and VR-based videos
Sharing videos is one thing but adding them with augmented and virtual reality takes the learning process to the next level. Besides learning and education, many businesses are using them to give examples of a practical, engaging user experience.
In the aviation and healthcare industries, virtual reality has numerous applications. When companies deliver information via virtual and augmented reality-based components, they show better results in terms of information retention and understanding.
Gamification means adding video games-like content into the learning solution. In the context of providing training via an LMS, gamification helps learners learn with some fun and establish a sense of accomplishment via the rewards they earn.
It can also help sustain the learners and motivate them to use the platform for a longer duration. Gamification is not a new notion for LMS content production, and being creative with it can level up the learning process.
When you connect to the LMS platform, you may see leaderboards and badges. These are some of the most common gamification features.
The last type of learning material you can share via an LMS is a mix of different types of content. This includes videos, readable content, audio, podcasts, among others. You can choose the right mix of content according to the resources available and build training-specific courses.
Deploying an enterprise learning management system at your company requires going through different sorts of content you can share and assessing its efficiency. For best results, create a roadmap that includes one or all of the techniques followed by gathering the resources required to implement them.
Common challenges while using LMS
Managing an organisation is easier said than done. With thousands of employees with different thought processes and personalities working under a single roof, generalisation is not possible.
Every person experiences training and learning differently. Some find it easier to learn via videos, while others are more comfortable with the content. So, implementing an LMS can be difficult for the human resources department.
There can arise some challenges as you implement an enterprise learning management system in your organisation. Listed here are the top five challenges organisations face and the solutions to the challenges.
Resistance from Employees
Among all the challenges in LMS and HR integration, one is resistance from employees. Even though the training process and LMS are meant to help the employees, they fear that their lack of understanding might get them fired. So, their resistance to a new system is a natural response.
When departments are merged after integration, conflicts between teams that used to work separately is possible.
Solution: The best way to tackle resistance is to convince employees that adding an LMS into the system will help them and the organisation. Make the goals of integrating LMS software clear and transparent to reduce the degree of resistance.
Lack of Proper Data
Data is crucial for implementing an LMS in the company. From the number of employees who need training to the type of training they need and then measuring its impact has to be immaculate. Data errors, incomplete data, or inconsistent data can be a challenge for an organisation.
Solution: The LMS will make things easier for you, but the challenge is at the beginning. So, to avoid any issues from this end, it is advised that the data be cleansed and audited prior to integration; otherwise, the new LMS data would be corrupted, causing everything to fall apart.
Time management poses dual challenges in implementing a LMS in the organisation. Not having the proper time to create the courses and administer them. And not being able to learn and train with these courses is a challenge that employees face.
For a company, the rush of having an LMS up and running can lead to underestimating the amount of time and work required to keep it running smoothly.
Course creation alone can consume a significant amount of time, especially if the courses are to be customised to meet the needs of the employees. The work is not over after the course is published. This is because the material must be updated over time; new courses will need to be added as the older ones will be taken out. Hence, it requires effective management of the resources shared on the platform with the users.
Secondly, the employees who will be taking these courses may also do not find the time. Things can be challenging, from onboarding to learning, taking tests, and checking the new materials.
Solution: So to tackle both sides of this challenge in implementing a corporate LMS, it’s a good idea to make a schedule with appropriate delivery dates. Trainers and managers must stick to the deadlines and hire the right people to help them with the implementation.
Employees must regularly set up a schedule to train from the LMS. Companies can help by keeping incentives for the employees who train from here or even making it mandatory.
Customising the Resources
Customising the courses is a challenge, but it can be done if you choose the right LMS that can help you easily customise everything.
Every company has its unique set of objectives and goals to set up an LMS. It cannot be expected for all companies to achieve their objectives with a one-size-fits-all solution.
Hence, it is essential to have a customised LMS implementation plan. The sheer amount of work that needs to be put into the exercise is a challenge. That’s why having a variety of customising features in an LMS is critical. Administrators and course authors can adjust the course length and content to keep the course relevant and updated with time.
So, you need a flexible LMS to manage productivity and build a system that is best suited for the employees.
Solution: This is where using an open-source LMS can be helpful. However, you might have to hire developers to code-in the features and functions you need. It will become easier to customise anything.
Disengagement or loss of interest in the LMS is another big challenge ailing the organisations implementing it. Employees lose interest in the middle of the program.
Solution: Gamification, customisation, and organisational policies can help in ensuring employee retention. So, it is best to use an LMS with gamification features and allows customising the courses.
Even the most successful and best-run businesses have issues with staff training. You can solve many organisational learning and training issues by implementing exercises and courses through LMS portals.
Using an LMS for this purpose can be an effective tool as long as you know how to tackle and mitigate the challenges. Make sure to build or provide targeted courses and standardise the service delivery to the best extent possible.
Things you should look for while purchasing an LMS
As a manager, what’s the first thing that comes to mind when planning to integrate an LMS into the organisation? It is the cost and time required to execute and manage a learning management system for most.
If you choose the right LMS portal and work on its implementation, the benefits will certainly outweigh the costs. The key to selecting the right LMS is this nine-factor checklist. Consider this before buying or building an LMS solution for the company.
With the extent of things we can today do with a mobile, your LMS must be able to facilitate the services to the users on a mobile as it can on a desktop.
It can be through an application or a web application, but being available on mobile is essential.
Users of your LMS may work on or communicate with various platforms simultaneously. Integration capabilities like single-sign-on (SSO) and webhooks can help you better tailor your LMS in these situations.
SSO lets users sign in to the LMS using the same credentials for other programs. A webhook is a way to communicate between your LMS and other enterprise platforms in real-time.
While these are the core principles by which you can add several integrations, compatibility with social media and CRMs can also help build an efficient and comprehensive learning management system.
Price and ROI
Ensure that you are not overpaying for the services and have chosen the right pricing model for your needs. There are different pricing models, including a subscription fee, one-time plan, and pay-according to the user system.
Each of these models has its own pros and cons. Make sure to understand them before moving forward.
To operate a corporate LMS platform, you must choose between a self-hosted or a cloud-hosted solution, where both types of hosting systems have their distinct pros and cons.
Self-hosted platforms give you an extensive amount of control. This is an advantage for many organisations, especially if your security needs require having complete control over your systems.
However, self-hosting your LMS means you’ll need to maintain and operate your own systems. There are hardware costs to be considered, among other expenses.
On the other hand, the software-as-a-service (SaaS) solution is the second option. SaaS platforms work on a subscription basis. You can access the LMS by logging into the software via the internet.
SaaS providers run a system that is specifically designed to be convenient, fast, and efficient. The disadvantage of a SaaS strategy is that you usually have the least amount of control over the system’s configuration. With these two options, make sure to identify your requirements before choosing one.
Type of Content It Can Deliver
We have earlier discussed around ten types of content that can be delivered via an LMS. You may not need to provide every kind of content available, but a combination of different types can be useful.
So, choose a platform that gives you the flexibility to choose between different types of content that can be delivered.
Analytics and Reporting System
LMS software is meant to generate a massive quantity of data. Thus, having a reliable mechanism to record, retrieve, and interpret this data is critical.
This information can be used for analysing the impact of having an LMS and creating reports. Although many LMS software gives some level of reporting, you must determine whether a system provides enough data and reporting to fulfil your company’s needs.
Efficient and reliable customer assistance services from an LMS provider are critical during the initial setup afterwards for resolving issues. Before deciding on the type of LMS, you will deploy, check out the vendor’s customer service quality and their promptness from a variety of sources.
Customer service options include live chat, email, and calling. Besides direct customer support, check out the extent of documentation available in written content, guides, and videos.
Security and Privacy
Every organisation is wary of losing its confidential data or leaving a backdoor for hackers to exploit. As a company employs a corporate LMS, it is their duty to protect the data of the employees using the same.
So before choosing an LMS, ensure to know the encryption and security protocols, firewalls, and SSL certificates.
As new and relevant technologies arrive, they must be embedded into the LMS so that you can leverage them for better results. It should update according to the industry requirements.
Make sure to ask about the upgrades and the frequency of the enterprise learning management system you wish to employ. Also, know if the updates are paid or included within the plan.
The right LMS portals can take your employee learning and development goals to the next. But if you have chosen an inefficient system, it will hamper your training goals, and the cost you will have to bear is an added disadvantage.
How Is LMS Priced?
Different institutions, including corporations and educational establishments, buy or develop learning management systems. With the changes in the role and usage, the type of LMS also changes. The cost you end up paying for an LMS depends on the cost structure.
Every pricing model has its own pros and cons and suits the company’s requirements differently. Here are the different pricing models.
Pay per Learner
Pay-per-learner or pay-per-seat follows a straightforward concept wherein you pay a predetermined fee for the number of users enrolled on the LMS. Pay-per-learner fees have a tier-based structure wherein the rate decreases with an increase in the number of users.
The advantage of this pricing model is that you can know the expenses on a monthly and annual basis. It is a predictable pricing model. This also limits the number of users you can onboard to the system according to the budget you wish to allocate.
The good thing about this cost structure is that you will only pay for the number of users who are using the platform. On the downside, you will be charged according to the number of users enrolled, irrespective of the fact that they are actively using the platform or not.
Pay Per Active User
The second popular costing method is when you pay for active users. This means that you will only pay for the users who are currently using the platform. This costing method overcomes the issue with the previous (pay-per-user) pricing model.
You can add any number of users (active or dormant) to the system but only pay for the ones who are active. This way, you can stay committed to the predetermined budget you have set for the LMS system implementation.
Besides the selective pricing system, you won’t have to worry about the registration and deregistration of the users. Once a user has an account, you can let it sit idle or make it active according to the requirements.
One possible downside is that some vendors ask you to take pre-paid plans. This means you must decide on the number of users and choose the right plan.
Paying a recurring license fee or a subscription fee for an LMS portal is the most common method organisations adopt. You have to pay an annual or a monthly fee, but you will have the freedom to add as many users to the platform as you want.
However, the vendors providing the services may have more than one pricing option. Most of them have three or more plans, and their offerings change according to the price.
The plans that cost higher have the most number of features against the lowest priced ones that have the least number of basic features. Furthermore, consider the price differences between different learning management systems when dealing with this pricing approach.
Make sure to compare the features each service provider has to offer and choose the one that provides the most number of features at an optimal cost.
Pay as You Go
With this price approach, the cost of a corporate LMS is directly proportional to its consumption. You may pay a small fee during off-peak hours, but you may have to pay a hefty fee during peak hours. Most of the service providers following this method do not charge a license fee.
The good thing about this LMS pricing model is that it gives you better control. The more you use, the more you pay. Plus, the price will only go up if the usage scales.
On the other hand, when the usage increases manifold, the cost will be higher. Sometimes, it is difficult for small businesses to pay that kind of money in advance.
Open-source is not a particular pricing model, but its inclusion in the list is necessary. We have discussed what open source means in length above, and it is clear that an open-source software won’t cost anything, at least not in terms of the fee.
However, to use a solution of this nature, you need to hire developers to work on the code and make changes to suit the organisational needs. Here, you can hire in-house developers or a third-party company to work on the task.
Open-source LMS gives you the ultimate level of flexibility. You can scale the solution to any level and make any sort of customisation. However, the cost to hire developers for the work is not cost-efficient.
With these five different pricing models, choosing one is not straightforward. To choose the best pricing model for your organisation, follow a simple exercise;
- Gather the number of users who will be using the platform.
- Know the purpose of using the LMS as it helps decide the ideal features you must have.
- Decide the type of content you wish to share.
- Allocate a budget to implement the enterprise learning management system in the organisation.
Once you have the answers to these aspects, tally them against the selected learning management systems’ different pricing models and offerings. Choose the LMS software that fulfils your requirements with the ideal pricing model.
Why Choose Centum LearnPro LMS?
Centum LearnPro is the ultimate solution you will need for organisational learning and development needs. When employee training becomes, necessary and impressive results are expected, using the right tools help achieve the goals.
With Centum, you will get to work with a Learning Management System (LMS) explicitly built to train employees, partners, and clients. This means you can provide comprehensive training to the individuals associated with the organisation and track their progress.
These training programs are facilitated by four execution models. These are:
- Self-Paced Learning
- Classroom Training
- Live Virtual Training
Centum LearnPro is built with an intuitive interface making it easy for everyone to interact with the platform.
Choose Centum LearnPro LMS because:
You can set and dedicate different training modules for every employee according to their role. This gives an easy way to train them in the skills they need to fulfil their responsibilities today and tomorrow.
The four types of enterprise learning management delivery models can be integrated to create a customised system for the employees.
Types of Training
Centum LearnPro LMS lets you offer different types of training material suited to the requirements. From regular ongoing training to some specific types like compliance or KPI-based programs, it allows you to create and share customised programs, thereby increasing engagement.
Users on this advanced LMS can communicate in real-time and collaborate via in-app tools. This gives them an efficient way to share ideas, hold discussions, meetings, and send or receive files.
Besides giving a way to tackle various challenges in initiating and implementing a training system in the company, Centum LearnPro also makes it easier to engage employees. You can share news through the platform and ensure that the right people are always a part of the company processes.
Centum LearnPro has everything you can expect from learning and development solutions, from personalised learning to AI recommendations and social media integration to gamification.
Book a free demo of Centum LearnPro today to experience how it works.