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Compliance Training

6 Tips for Choosing the Right Learning Management System (LMS)


By Josh Young Jul 11, 2017

tips choosing learning management system lms

We can all agree that compliance training is important. (At least, we hope that you agree.) And the backbone of any effective training program is the learning management system (LMS) used to track, document, and deliver educational modules.

A capable LMS will streamline course delivery, offer valuable insight into learning trends, and simplify records management -- all while keeping your staff well-informed. Whereas an ineffective platform can leave your learning and development teams frustrated, your employees ignorant, and your business open to possible legal action.

So then, what should your company do if your current LMS solution is ineffective or, even worse, non-existent?

Replace it.

How Can Your Company Find the Right LMS?

1. Have a plan

Before your business starts looking for a new LMS, you should identify specifically what your organization needs. Take a close look at compliance requirements for your industry and determine what type of information needs to be communicated to your staff. Also identify any key features (e.g., mobile access, reporting) that are non-negotiable for the new platform. 

Some other factors you should identify are:

  • Number of users
  • Types of training
  • Delivery processes
  • Frequency of courses

2. Think of the users

No matter how innovative an LMS platform is, it will be useless if your trainers and trainees can't figure out how to operate it. Look for a solution that has a well-thought-out and intuitive user interface.

Similarly, consider how end users will access the training. For example, research conducted by Towards Maturity CIC found that 67 percent of eLearning students consume courses via mobile devices. And the younger your workforce is, the higher that percentage will likely increase.

Don't forget about your learning and development team either. Consider the technical acumen of existing staff and determine how easy it will be for them to create new modules or training sessions. Will the new platform limit you to hiring future trainers with sufficient technical skills? Will you have to divert resources from your IT department to develop new learning modules?

3. Get as much data as you can

Yes, you'll want an LMS solution that can track training compliance, but you should consider a system that supports robust analytics capabilities as well. The more meta-data that your new LMS platform gathers, the more easily you can identify learning gaps and fine-tune your training modules.

4. Remember that things break

An often overlooked element when considering a new LMS is how well supported the platform will be. Does the solution come with a dedicated support team? Or will you only have an online FAQ and user forums to figure out problems.

Whatever system you choose, it will fail eventually. If you don't have a robust IT team (or if they're busy keeping the business running), you might want to consider platforms that come with ongoing support.

5. Try before you buy

Much like a new car, it's not wise to purchase a new LMS without giving it a thorough once-over. Only consider platforms that offer software trials or service demos.

And when evaluating these potential systems, include not only those who will be responsible for training but future trainees as well. Their candid responses will help you gauge how likely end users will be to embrace the new system and related training efforts.

6. Think about the future

That LMS platform you are considering may be perfect for what your business needs today. But will it still be as useful next year? Or in five years?

While there is no such thing as a "future-proof" LMS, you should bear in mind that your current training needs will change, and you need a system that can accommodate these shifting requirements. Some questions you may want to ask are:

  • How frequently does the provider update the software?
  • How long has the provider been in business and how stable is their company?
  • Can you integrate other applications or tools with the LMS platform?
  • Does it scale seamlessly? Would it be able to keep up with your growth projections?

The Next Step

Unfortunately, there is no one-size-fits-all training platform out there. The best LMS for your company will definitely not be the best choice for every company. And with so many options available on the market, finding the right platform can prove a bit daunting.

To learn more about how Workplace Answers can help your business develop an education program that meets your company's unique challenges and expectations, request a demo of our courses.

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