In a global survey undertaken by IBM, 49% of respondents stated customer-centric outcomes as the main reason for initiating big data efforts in organizations – Analytics: The real-world use of big data. It is not surprising because Big Data gives insights into customers’ needs and preferences that can be used to create niche value for their customers in an effort to win over their loyalty.
In the recently concluded Next Generation Chief Marketing Officer Summit, CMOs of leading companies brainstormed about Big Data and how organizations can capitalize on its potential. One of the factors that everyone agreed upon was that Big Data is useless if one does not know what to do with it.
It is strikingly similar to the Data that an LMS provides about its users i.e. the employees. In this context employees are customers of knowledge that organization is trying to share. If their information is not captured and organized properly, you would have a wealth of information that’s sitting there but useless because you don’t have means to retrieve it and use it for the benefit of both the employees and organization.
LMS has the potential to provide valuable information about the courses, learner behavior and consequently the success /failure of the learning initiatives. The key is to organize the information in a manner that is easily accessible. This enables capturing useful information that can help make training more productive and effective to their learners.
Here are some of the ways you can use LMS data to improve your courses and training initiatives:
Data about course enrollments and completions
Suppose your courses are finding no takers, either the information has not reached the target group or the courses are not relevant to them. This information helps you to re-look at your course marketing strategy or course assigning strategy. Sometimes your courses might have good user registrations but fare poorly on completion. Having this information on hand enables you to assess and analyze the reasons and made suitable amendments.
Status Report about course completion and progress of users
Using filter options in the LMSs, you can get detailed information about courses assigned to users and their current status – Registered, In progress or Completed. You can also analyze the time taken by users to complete the course. If most users are taken longer than the estimated time to complete the course, either the course is too difficult or not directly related to the job function of the user. These little indicators can give cues that help you make courses more relevant to the target segment.
Data from course evaluation/ feedback
Users who have taken courses can provide valuable feedback about the relevance of the course to them, its design and structure. You can assess the quality of the courses; tabulate the suggestions to improve courses and so on. Sometimes course – end evaluations are made optional which is not such a good idea because you would lose the opportunity to capture useful information about the courses. This information can help you understand if the course assigned is relevant to the user’s job, if the instructional strategy used for the course is effective.
Customized reports using LMS report builder
It is possible that the standard reports offered by the LMS may not meet your requirement or training pattern. In such cases, you might have to generate a customized report. It is not easy to generate a report from report builder and it demands logical and technical expertise. It required selecting the right parameters and adding appropriate filters. It is best to identify the type of report valuable to your L & D initiatives right at the time of purchasing an LMS. This helps is identifying the right LMS for your needs and negotiate accordingly with the LMS provider. Alternatively you can negotiate the terms at the times of upgrade.
Another option is to seek external help to generate customized reports from your LMS. We have provided such customized report to our clients at CommLab which proves to be a cost-effective solution to most customers.
Organizations are moving from being product-centric to customer-centric in their marketing strategy and customer data is valuable for them to achieve this objective. Similarly, if organizations want to become learner/employee-centric, they need to capitalize the options provided by their Learning Management System to understand employees and provide knowledge solutions that address their learning needs.
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