Technology is constantly evolving and so are the learning management systems. Gone are the days when the sole purpose of an LMS was to host courses and track user completion of the courses. Today’s learning management systems can do a lot more than that.
In an LMS feasibility study published by University of North Carolina
/2010/08/osc_feasibility_study_summary.pdf) the following attributes were considered important to define the best LMS solution.
- Interoperability and Flexibility
- Cost Effectiveness
- Support and Training
- Ease of Use
- Scalability & Sustainability
Interoperability and Flexibility: The LMSs of today are based on modular components that support different services and are not bound by a single platform. This ensures interoperability between LMSs and provides the flexibility to tweak and change learning paths and modules as per the changing demands of learners and organizations. Therefore, this is an important aspect to check if your current LMS can do this.
Cost Effectiveness: Cost of learning management system involves licensing, hosting and per user/ seat charge. Organizations might also incur ongoing costs of customization, administration and vendor support in addition to the fixed one-time costs. Sometimes, open-source LMSs such as Moodle have an advantage as there are no licensing costs and the money saved can be used to provide better user-support and administration. If operating costs of your existing LMS are escalating, you may wish to consider more cost-effective options because though the initial costs involve migrating an LMS may be high, it might turn out to be viable in the long run.
Support and Training: In our experience in managing and administrating client LMSs, we realized that usability of LMS and user-support are critical in making an LMS successful within an organization. If you do not have an in-house support system to enthuse and motivate users to use the LMS, you may want to think of hiring an external help that supports your LMS administration and management. Ideally, you should choose an LMS provider who becomes your partner in training and supporting LMS implementation within the organization. If your existing vendor fails to deliver, you can shop for other providers in the market.
Ease of Use: In a survey conducted by Training Inc, most organizations have rated Usability as most critical factor in the success or failure of an LMS. The design and folder structure in an LMS needs to be intuitive and standardized across the organization. This ensures that the user does not get lost and knows where to find what he/she is looking for on logging into the system. An LMS that helps create such an environment and provides the flexibility to do so according to your organizational needs would be ideal. Does your existing LMS fulfill these criteria? If not, it is time to shift.
Scalability & Sustainability: When you first adopted an LMS, you might have catered to say 1000 users with a handful of courses. However, as you grow and expand, users have increased, number of courses hosted also increases and per user costs are no longer cost effective and viable. You may also require a higher data storage space and you might want to look for a more sustainable option in the long run particularly if you are in dynamic environment with numbers of users and courses varying from time to time.
If your existing LMS does not fulfill any of the above criteria, it is time to think of migrating to another LMS that best handles your learning requirements. Shifting to a more compatible and viable LMS is no longer a complicated matter as it seemed to be a few years ago. Of course, it takes time and effort and involves careful streamlining and planning. But it is an effort that is best taken in the long term interest of the organization.
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The user-friendliness of a software application can be measured by the number of steps needed to perform an activity. This is particularly true for learning management systems (LMSs) as they are used by several users and administrators. An LMS can be considered complicated if the user needs to perform 2 steps to go to the required page or do any LMS activity. We can customize the user side by creating shortcuts on the dashboard. But, what about the administrators’ activities?
In the previous post of this series, we have seen how several companies are using open-source LMSs to manage their learning activities. In this last post of the series, let us examine the Enterprise option.
A learning management system (LMS) is an software application which helps to deliver online training. With the help of it, we can deliver courses as well as track users’ status and scores.
In the second post of this series, we have seen the about the WordPress option. Here, let us see the second option i.e Moodle (open source LMS).
In the previous blog, we have seen the benefits and features of an LMS. We have also seen that organizations, depending on their size and complexity, have three LMS options before them. Among them, the first option is Word Press. Let us see about it, in detail.
Many organizations are using eLearning to train their employees, and they need a Learning Management System (LMS) to track and monitor learning activities. According to the Brandon Hall 2012 report, 78% of organizations are using a Learning Management System (LMS) and 33% of companies were looking to upgrade or replace their current systems.
Moodle is the most widely used open source learning management systems, according to the eLearning Guild. It is highly flexible and can be customized based on our needs. I got opportunities to attend brainstorming sessions with customers to identify their specific requirements to manage trainings on the LMS. One of the common requirements which is not available in Moodle is domains. They wanted to have multiple domains in the same LMS. Users or the administrator belonging to Domain-A should not be allowed to view/access the courses or users of Domain-B. There should be a chief administrator who should have access to all the users of or courses available in the LMS, irrespective of domains.
Collaborative learning may play an important role in training employees or channel partners. Collaborative learning enables your people to obtain vital information which they may not be able to obtain through formal training programs.
LMS, an acronym for Learning Management System, is a software application designed to plan, implement and track learning content. It helps integrate all training administration activities under one roof. A Learning Management System is sometimes also known as Course Management System (CMS), Learning Content Management System (LCMS), Virtual Learning Environment (VLE), Virtual Learning System (VLS), learning portal, or eLearning platform. Though a Learning Management System (LMS) is defined differently by different vendors, its functions remain the same.
A Learning Management System (LMS) is a software application that helps deliver online training programs. An LMS can also be used to track, document and report learners’ process.