Everything You Need to Know About Choosing a Learning Management System

With so many LMSs out there, choosing one can be tough, here are some questions you should be asking

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Ever find having too much information at your finger-tips leaves you on the verge of pulling names out of a hat and an overwhelming sensation in the pit of your stomach?

In a culture where effective decision-making in business has become synonymous with hours of pouring over comparison charts, listening to pitches and waiting for sign-off from the top dogs, it’s a wonder how we actually get anything done.

And that never rings truer than when you’re trying to pick the perfect learning management system (LMS) to suit you and your staff or clients.

From effective customisation to tracking options, test creation and online proctoring, the number of features and tweaks available on each LMS platform can prove both impressive and equally mystifying.

That’s okay, though, because we’re here to help.

Below, we’ve pulled together some of the top questions you should consider when making that final call – a little bit of insider information from the top experts, if you like.

Do I need my LMS to be customisable to my brand?

Sharing your brand is about so much more than just a logo. It’s about colour, content, tone of voice and sharing the right image for your business.

The reality is that you want to make sure there are touch-points throughout that remind learners they’re studying from a trusted source which, in turn, is easily remembered and recommended to friends.

Does it to be accessible to my whole team?

This is where it’s important to think about the back-end of the software you’re using and user implementation.

Think about how many users can access it at once and ensure it works in a straight-forward way that requires little training for staff and students.

Does my LMS need to integrate with any other software?

One thing you might also want to consider is how your LMS syncs with your HRIS, CRM, CMS and other management systems.

Working with an LMS that has plugins available, or can have APIs built into it, to help you integrate your other cloud-based systems means that, for admins and learners alike, access, reporting and security (SSO) becomes a much more user-friendly experience.

As far as we’re concerned, more integration means more control – vital for any forward-thinking business.

What about activities and communication?

Are you looking to build tests and quizzes, offer certifications and have the ability for both teachers and learners to interact?

This is probably the crux point – how the system works on the ground level for the user.

Think carefully about which activities you require, whether that’s running assessments, providing proof of qualification or connecting teachers and learners directly via the platform.

Do I need a bespoke interface for learners?

Having a bespoke learner interface means you can tailor each course to the user’s role, helping to match training with strategy for the business.

For example, based on the content, you might need to communicate modules to the learner in a more sophisticated way that delivers both what you both need as an employer and as an employee, which can then be easily transitioned into the workplace.

Should it be mobile-friendly?

This can totally depend on your target audience and how likely they are to use their phone for online learning – for example, over 60s? Maybe not so much.

However, it’s worth noting that, in 2018, 78% of people in the UK owned a smartphone – and, of this, 72% said their phone was their most important device for accessing the internet.*

With this in mind, we would suggest making sure your LMS is mobile-friendly, making it easily accessible and usable to all.

In conclusion

We know there are probably some more questions that you’re dying to get answers for – but this is a pretty good place to start.

If the above covers everything you need, we would highly recommend checking out Totara, a flexible, open learning management system that gives organisations the freedom to learn in their way.

For more information, get in touch – contact our expert team here.