This increasingly popular educational software subcategory covers solutions used for delivery, tracking, reporting, documenting and administering training programs and educational courses. LMS solutions are used by instructors from various educational segments to administer tests, manage students' and trainees' records and perform other tasks related to online teaching. You can use LMSs to support already existing courses or design and deliver original teaching content across a variety of digital platforms. Read the full software guide...
Learning management system (LMS) software helps educators and employers create, facilitate and deliver educational courses or training programs online.
The software provides a robust framework capable of delivering content, strategic planning, implementation and assessment of specific learning processes. Businesses can use the software to monitor the progress of their learners, conduct tests, grade assignments and evaluate results through reports and chart-based analytics.
Learning management system software also benefits learners by providing them with a virtual classroom, where they can access all courses and training materials, interact with their teachers or instructors and learn in a collaborative environment.
More advanced products allow educators to organize their learners into different groups or classes on the basis of their age, experience, or learning ability.
The role of LMS software solutions may vary depending on the goals, eLearning strategy and desired outcomes of the business using the software. However, the core purpose of LMS solutions is to implement and monitor online training initiatives for employees.
A variety of organizations and businesses can use LMS software to help educate and encourage skill development for whoever needs it, including schools, universities and any business requiring training or education modules.
LMS software can either be integrated into on-premise hosted servers or used as a SaaS cloud-based solution, accessible through a browser or mobile device.
Depending on the type of buyers they target, learning management software products can be separated into three different categories.The most popular include:
Educational institutions can use locally hosted or cloud-based LMS systems to provide quality education and eLearning courses to students online. Using the platform, instructors can deliver course content to students on campus or remotely and make sure all learners progress in their education.
This type of LMS software is designed to serve educational institutions, such as schools, colleges, and universities. Some products are made exclusively for K-12 schools, while others are more suitable for universities or higher education institutes. You can use these products to share content, assign homework, create student polls and assess student performance.
Large enterprises and corporations can make use of an enterprise LMS platform to efficiently track the progress of a large number of employees and individually monitor their participation level and productivity. This is particularly useful if you want to maximize the results of your training program.
Managing a global training initiative for a multinational corporation means you may need extended enterprise features and ensure that all users on the platform are constantly in the loop of whatever training materials and courses you’re providing. It also allows you to keep track of everyone’s progress, regardless of their location.
This type of LMS software caters to the specific needs of corporate buyers. Businesses often use the software to manage all tasks associated with corporate training, from creating and distributing training materials to managing certifications and licenses and measuring the effectiveness of training programs. Corporate LMS solutions are available for businesses of every size.
For small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs), a learning management system can help provide adequate training to every employee using fewer resources. Due to a reduced number of employees compared to larger organizations, an all-in-one solution will be best as it combines the basic features of various learning management systems into one package.
Both educational institutions and business organizations can use this type of software to meet their overall needs for learning or training management with similar results.
When choosing which LMS software is best for your business, there are a number of things that need to be considered. First, you should identify which industry the software is most applicable too. For instance, if you are an educator, you’ll need educational LMS software or if you're a corporate buyer, you should consider software that is more suited for larger enterprise businesses. Most buyers of an LMS software can choose an all-in-solution.
The next step is to choose the exact features you need considering the requirements and limitations of your target audience. Different businesses and organizations all require different features, ranging from the most basic to advanced features, integration and functions for a larger scale operation.
Products focused on higher education usually come with more advanced features, such as granular role creation, advanced assessment and detailed analytics. Products designed to serve colleges and universities often support the Learning Tools Interoperability (LTI) standard, so that administrators can easily connect to their existing LMS software. Products suitable for use both in schools and universities are also available.
You may also want to consider whether you need multi-language support, peer assessment, advanced predictive analytics to identify at-risk students and features such as point-based contests and badges.
Corporate LMS solutions usually come with advanced mobile, social collaboration and eCommerce features. One important consideration when choosing this type of LMS software is the size and scalability of your organization. If you are expecting rapid growth, look for a scalable product or one that allows you to upgrade features as your business grows.
If you need an LMS for internal training, but have plans to train your external customers in the future, consider choosing a product with integrated eCommerce. This will help you monetize your internal training materials in the future at no additional cost.
LMS platforms should include the following features to help make the most of the software:
Intuitive user interface - The user interface is one of the most important deciding factors when it comes to choosing any software solution. A friendly, easy-to-use interface will make navigating the LMS and finding what users need much easier.
Responsive features and design - A learning management system with a responsive design will help make sure your course content can be accessed and viewed effectively by learners from any internet-enabled device. The user experience on a desktop computer and mobile should be similar and be both engaging and responsive for users.
Reporting and analytics capability - This feature allows you to see different data points in your training program, including who’s completing the eLearning course, how learners are progressing using the course content you’ve provided or whether or not they’re staying on track. You should have the capability to monitor learning performance at an individual and group-level.
Compliance training and certification support - If you’re an organization that offers comprehensive company policy and compliance training online, then you should definitely consider looking into learning management system software that supports this kind of capability.
E-learning evaluation tools - If you want to train your employees and get new hires oriented with the policies and procedures of your organization using a training program you’ve created with your LMS solution, make sure to choose a solution to facilitate proper assessment and evaluation of the learning process.
Other key areas to look for include resource management, talent management, content authoring, certification and compliance management capabilities of a product.
Using LMS software can be very beneficial to your organization's growth and future-proofing needs, as it allows for a number of advantages and benefits for the business when using one. Benefits include:
You can use LMS software to train your employees with the skills or knowledge they need to succeed in the role and assist with their career aspirations. This ensures that your workforce is continuously improving their skills and knowledge and wanting to improve. Staff and employees can also access the material at a later date and start new training modules to further improve.
LMS software helps employees learn new skills and progress in your business faster, improving employee retention metrics and increasing employee engagement in their work. High employee retention and progression ensures that staff remain satisfied with their work and also saves time and resources as you don't have to hire externally when positions become available.
Using LMS software, companies can cut travel costs and save time on planning and organizing training programs as courses can be conducted online and using the intuitive portal. The software also helps educators automate grading and reduce paperwork, which saves educators time and money.
Overall, LMS software is an ideal solution for businesses and schools looking to train, teach, and test their employees and students effectively. With a number of features and integration, the learning process is simplified and allows for greater learning potential for users.
|API||Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) are programmatic intersections with external products or platforms that allow for custom integrations with your own solutions or other solutions you are using.|
|Class Management||Keep students organized, orderly, focused, attentive and on task.|
|Comparative Reporting||Report across different employees, departments or job functions at the same time to discover hidden potential for improvement|
|Corporate/Business||This indicates if a Learning Management System (LMS) or other EdTech platform is geared towards or suited for use by enterprise and business teams, rather than academic institutions or personal learning purposes.|
|Data Export||Exporting functionality can be used to streamline the migration of data sets and information across systems, platforms or applications.|
|Data Import||Importing functionality allows you to use data sets from other systems or platforms to cut down on data entry requirements or to more easily migrate records from similar applications you have used in the past.|
|Data Visualization||Data visualization features render a visual interpretation of data sets through the use of charts, infographics and other visual cues generally in form of a reporting dashboard.|
|Document Comparison||Compare and contrast different versions of documents and browse revision histories to consolidate collaborative changes.|
|Employee Training||Manage ongoing training processes for new and existing employees. This is often used for professional certifications and regular safety or quality training management.|
|External Integrations||Integrations with other software products or platforms to improve efficiency and compatibility across systems.|
|Mobile App||Give users access to the application via mobile phones, tablets and other smart devices besides desktop computers.|
|Multi-User||Supports more than just one user account and generally allows for collaboration with colleagues.|
|Personal Learning||Individual learning environments allowing you to develop skills and knowledge bases for personal purposes or to further your career goals.|
|Report & Compliance||Attain tailored reports and checklists.|
|Scheduling||Schedule tasks, resources, appointments, payments, communications, etc.|
|SCORM||Shareable Content Object Reference Model. Set of technical standards that governs how Learning Management Systems (LMS) communicate with each other.|
|Student Registration||Ensure student data is accurate and correct.|
|Video Courses||Educational courses using web video as the primary medium.|
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