As an administrator you may have full access to all the LMS activities. Any administrative activity in the live system can be considered critical if it is just adding a user or creating any complex ILT training. Anything wrong which happens by accident or unintentionally, training function may treat it as a mistake and you may be asked to give a detailed explanation. You will then need to fix it in less time and with highest priority. In some instances, Administrators have lost their jobs.
By handling many support requests and by self-learning you may have come up with some standards to be followed by you and all other sub-administrators for your LMS. As an administrator to various LMSs and various industries I got opportunity to learn some do’s and don’ts of LMS administration. I am sharing 5 things which should be avoided to reduce risk in LMS administration.
1. Don’t put inconsistent course titles or enter incomplete information:
When you are creating a new user account or creating new training in the LMS, it is important to fill all the mandatory fields. Missing any such field may affect reporting. To avoid this you may need to maintain an excel sheet which can be used as a template to get the user or training details. You may add instructions and conditions to fill all the required data correctly. Once you are done with the sheet then you can create it in the LMS accordingly. Checklist and step-by-step procedure may also help in maintaining consistency and complete information in the LMS.
2. Don’t create your own training structure or workflow each time
If you have a team of administrators, then there may be a chance of not following the best practices or standards in maintaining the LMS. In every LMS you may find at least 2 ways of doing any activity. Both may be correct but only one of them may be up to your training standards. So it becomes necessary for all the administrators to follow the same standard. Following standard training structure or workflow will help other administrators to understand the user support requests and fix them quickly without contacting the person who created it.
3. Don’t update training status on behalf of learner or any other user
As an administrator you may have access to do any activities on behalf of other users. For example, you can cancel/register the trainings on behalf of learner or you can approve training request on behalf of the Manager. The intention behind it may not be to tinker with the LMS records but wanting to help the user. These sometimes may put you in trouble and the best way to handle these requests is to guide the users how to do it through documentation. Another advantage with this procedure is that the next time the users will do the activity themselves without contacting you for support. This will reduce number of support requests in the long run.
4. Don’t test directly on live system
It is a best practice to utilize the advantages of test system on the LMS when there is any bulk activity to be executed in the LMS. For example, when you need to add bulk user accounts or migrate training data into the LMS first you may test it on the test system and then upload it in the live system, so that you can avoid mistakes and the effort of correcting them. It will be helpful and gives you lot of freedom to learn or practice a new feature on the test system rather live.
5. Don’t assign trainings carelessly
Assigning trainings may look very simple and easy. However, the problems may come when you are going to assign it to the audience or group. Imagine that you are going to assign a product training course to the marketing & sales team. When selecting the audience to register if you select global domain instead of marketing & sales domain, then each and every employee including CEO of the company receives LMS notification to take the course and the situation becomes very critical with no way to stop these emails.
Please share your tips which should be avoided in LMS administration.