In the age of e-learning, Learning Management Systems are vitally important when you want to invest in staff training. These systems provide companies with ubiquitous learning opportunities as it is all done online.
Spending hours of the workday in training sessions could lead to many lost working man-hours. Staff can access the learning material at any time and you also have to prepare the learning material only once.
It means that all the training material is available at all times and can be reviewed over and over. Along with educational softwares, it’s the future of education, from classroom to libraries, and from schools to universities.
Although it could be a viable option to implement an LMS, there are many questions you need to answer before you can make a final decision.
The potential costs involved
There are many advantages to implementing an LMS, but one of the biggest advantages is of a financial nature. However, if the system is not properly planned and researched beforehand, the costs could mount up and eventually become a financial burden.
Depending on the type of system that you want to implement, the pricing plans will differ and can cost anything from $4000 - $25 000. However, the initial hard costs are not the only numbers you should be looking at.
The easy numbers, like the licensing fees, setup costs and pricing plans, are only the beginning. The pricing model is usually the main indicator of the hard costs and is easy to calculate.
If the existing training management systems don't meet your expectations, you may opt for developing a custom LMS for your company. This option is usually more expensive to develop but it is cheaper to maintain and gives you the flexibility to tailor the system according to your exact needs.
After you have chosen your LMS pricing model, you can investigate further hidden costs. In many cases, regardless of the support you receive from the LMS vendor, you still need to develop content and course material.
Apart from the initial development costs, you will also need to look at training staff to use the software or hire an IT professional to maintain the system and train staff in its use.
Related read: How Much Does It Cost to Develop an Educational App
What features you are looking for in your LMS
There are numerous LMSs on the market and each one has its own set of unique features. You will need to decide which features you want and compare the prices. Although you will be able to find LMSs that cost a pretty penny, there are also open-source systems which are packed with features.
Certain LMSs offer a skeletal version of the software where you pay per feature. Choosing a system like this is only advisable when you know exactly what you want from your system.
In most cases, as courses are run, the kinks are ironed out and a better assessment can be made of what features are lacking and what features are unnecessary.
Some of the core features you should be looking at, however, are:
- ease of use and integration,
- content management,
- mobile learning compatibility,
- blended learning capabilities,
- testing and assessment methods,
- reporting, tracking and analytics,
These are the basic features that your system should possess if it is to be successfully implemented.
Online writing services and digital publishing services have successfully implemented and demonstrated the success in using LMS. For the best online writing service and essay writing help websites like UK essay writing service and My Assignment Help, it’s been a tremendous success story.
Aims you wish to achieve with the LMS
One might think that this is a self-explanatory aspect to consider. However, when one looks a bit closer, the aims you wish to accomplish could have a dire effect on all your decisions. Time should be spent in determining the full extent of what the company wishes to achieve for the right system to be implemented.
Certain companies wish to train internal employees only, while other companies are looking for a solution in training customers and partners.
Other companies might only be looking for a central and secure place where they can store and archive all their training material. Yet, other companies want to track their employees’ development progress and evaluations.
The learning objects you intend to use
If you have settled on an LMS, the next important aspect that you will need to investigate is the learning objects and assessment tools needed to evaluate the learning objects.
Many LMS providers will have prepackaged course material that might not speak to your needs. In some cases, these courses cannot be edited, or when you request that certain changes be made, it could end up costing you more than what you budgeted for.
On the other hand, when you have an LMS that allows for custom content to be created, you need to be able to match a relevant assessment method to the content.
Most LMSs have built-in assessment tools. However, you need to establish whether those tools are sufficient and whether they will be able to evaluate your employees accurately.
The maintenance of the LMS
Apart from the costs needed to implement your LMS, the costs are running due to maintenance and course updates. You need to establish how you are going to manage these costs and get the right people to run this division of your company.
Getting a full-time IT specialist to maintain the software is a must if you have a large company. On the other hand, investing in an e-learning specialist to maintain the course itself would save you countless hours and also ensure that the course is up to standard. Not everyone is an educational expert and having someone on the team who knows how to analyze results and adjust a program is vital to a successful LMS.
The implementation steps
Once you’ve counted the costs and determined that implementing an LMS is worth your time and money, you can start following the steps for your LMS implementation.
The first step is to assemble your team. These are the people who will run this LMS and should consist of a team leader who will oversee the project, the educational specialist or LMS manager who will oversee the course and assessments, training administrator for the staff and an IT specialist to maintain the whole system.
From here, the team should start planning the roll-out of the system and set goals for what the LMS is to achieve. This will require the most time but is worth the extra effort.
Once everything is planned out, the LMS needs to be configured and the structure needs to be finalized with the service provider. This includes the course material as well as the user profiles that need to be set up.
Once this is done, the system can be integrated with the current network and testing can begin. This phase is crucial and various scenarios should be run to ensure that all questions can be answered as they arise from our employees.
Finally, the system can go live and your employees can get their access credentials. Training can begin and your team should be able to maintain it without any major malfunctions or breakdowns.
It is crucial to keep your employees’ skills up to date and doing it via a сorporate LMS could provide you with a possible solution. The fact that the world is turning into a digital one and that the tools are available to enable remote learning, makes this not only a viable solution but one of the most efficient ones.
This is a guest post by Tiffany Harper. Tiffany is a talented writer from New York, an extremely active woman, and a real leader. She began her career as a journalist and later proceeded it as an educational writer and editor. Now she works as the main writer consultant with https://www.essaymama.com/, mostly in technology and educational area. Please do not hesitate to contact her on Twitter.