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Buying an LMS for the First Time? Here are the Important Things You Need to Know

By Allan Alveyra

So, you have heard about the term LMS or Learning Management System. You also learned how it can help you bring progress into your corporate learning. But you’re still trying to know more about this tool and hoping to gain further insight. If that’s the case, here are the important things you need to know when buying LMS for the first time. 

What is a Learning Management System by the way? 

A Learning Management System or LMS is a cloud or web-based platform that allows seamless administration of learning programs. Think of it as a big repository where you can keep and access information with just a quick login. Typically, an LMS contains online learning or training resources.

What does an LMS do? 

The application of a Learning Management System varies depending on organizational goals. Nonetheless, its purpose is to create, scale, and measure content for vast and faster distribution. With the use of an LMS, you can deploy learning materials across different mediums and formats.

How does it operate? 

Learning Management Systems have different forms of deployment. It can be cloud-based. This means it’s in a form of software as a service or SaaS. Your LMS provider will manage and carry out all the necessary technical tasks for you. From performing software maintenance to applying new features and upgrades, they can provide these initiatives.

Since an LMS operates mostly inside a web browser, it gives students and instructors easy access to courses and other learning materials. It also allows them to utilize this software using various devices such as a computer, tablet, or smartphone. 

An LMS can also be self-hosted. In other words, the software provider may offer a licensed product that will operate on a server of their choice. This allows greater control when it comes to customization. However, self-hosting may come with extra costs for updates and a higher level of technical know-how.  

What are the common features of an LMS?

While LMS vendors can design their own unique product identity, their software commonly share the same set of features and specifications. They are the following: 

What are the benefits of an LMS? 

To say that anyone can use an LMS is an oversimplification. But to say it’s limited to educational purposes is an understatement. Both schools and corporations highly benefit from learning management systems whatever their goals and objectives are. 

A Learning Management System is great for employee onboarding, compliance training, or even selling digital products. LMS customer types vary from SMEs to large businesses.

The application of an LMS is a game-changer for corporate institutions that wish to deliver training to a large audience. When it comes to an LMS’s advantage, they include, but are not limited to:

  • Safe storage and easy access to big date: Contents inside a Learning Management System are accessible because it lets you store all your e-learning materials in one location instead of using multiple hard drives and devices. This reduces the risk of losing content essential to constructing your training program.
  • Easy monitoring of user’s progress: a Learning Management System gives updates of learner progress and performance. For example, if a learner or group of learners are not complying with a specific task in your e-learning program, you have concrete data and analytics to help you keep track of their progress.
  • Efficiency and flexibility of content delivery: You can carry out most of your tasks remotely using an LMS, thus giving your company the advantage of reducing overhead expenses for instructor travel costs, rentals, printed materials, and more. By simply logging into your account, you can update online materials and modules even without redoing your entire course or training program.
  • Personalized learning experience: Optimal user engagement is paramount to successful corporate training. To achieve this, learning tools should match the specific needs of users. Using an LMS helps personalize the learning experience by assigning different learning paths based on individual or group parameters.

What qualities of an LMS should you look for? 

The whole point of using an LMS is to promote convenience and efficiency. While “user-friendly” is a relative term, there are other ways to know whether your solution is worth the investment. With that, here are some of the qualities you should look for:

  • Intuitive: A good LMS is something you can easily set up and use from the moment of its installation. Though not everyone might get the hang of things at the beginning, a user-friendly LMS should be intuitive to maintain user engagement. Intuitive means it’s user-centric and easy to navigate. This happens when if you have a perfectly designed User Interface (UI).
  • Remotely accessible: Cloud-based solutions changed the modern workforce. Nowadays, people started working outside traditional office premises. It introduced mobile learning. Thus, an LMS must not only be user-friendly but should also be mobile responsive. Users must have access to e-learning courses and materials anytime, anywhere.
  • Reliable and consistent: Users don’t have to deal with frequent software hiccups. Their LMS must be reliable at any given time or moment. Consistency and reliability are important commodities in an LMS. User experience must be efficient regardless of where, when, or how the platform is accessed.
  • Adaptable to the changing e-learning landscape: With the continuous growth of the LMS market, vendors and developers started making digital products that adhere to certain e-learning technical standards (e.g. SCORM or xAPI compliant). These standards are a set of common rules that apply to content, authoring software, and Learning Management Systems.

Where do you go from here? 

There’s a lot to learn about the upside of integrating an LMS into your business model. And there’s an abundance of information on the internet about who provides the best LMS product and services.

Good thing, we at Cursum can assist you with all your LMS needs and other matters that relate to purchasing the most reliable SaaS technology. We can you guide in the process of turning your ideas into a unique platform that reflects your own brand.