Top 8 qualities of a great Learning Management system

November 14, 2017 iTrackglobal

LMS

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Globally, there are over 500 Learning Management Systems. With that many numbers of players in the market, we are clearly spoilt for choices.The LMS market size is expected to grow from USD 5.22 Billion in 2016 to USD 15.72 Billion by 2021.

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Choosing an LMS can be a daunting task for any company. There is a great deal of time and money involved in the decision-making process.

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The last thing you would want is to end up with an LMS which is not being well-received by your end user.

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To help you make the right decision, I have compiled a list of qualities to look for in an LMS.

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The Top 8 qualities of a great Learning Management system (LMS)

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1. Course Management

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According to Docebo, the size of the eLearning market was estimated to be over USD 165 Billion in 2015 and is likely to grow by 5% between 2016 and 2023, exceeding USD 240 Billion.

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The process of eLearning can be enhanced by using a course management system that allows you to manage your entire collection of course online.

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Some of the benefits of using a course management software include – Faculty can post-course materials, grade students, send the newsletter.

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Students can use eLabs, post their assignments and projects, chat real time with other participants and discuss asynchronously using discussion boards, upload their resume.

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2. Content Management

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A content management system is a web application (software) that runs on the server.

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CMS, as it is known, allows users to create and modify digital content without the need for any technical experience/knowledge.

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It can be used to collect, manage, control versions, publish and assign rights to user groups for your digital content such as text files, audio files, videos files, and images.

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Users can also collaborate with each other using a CMS.

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3. Compliance with eLearning standards

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To understand each other, we humans must share underlying assumptions about how we communicate, like a common language.

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In a very similar way, eLearning standards define how eLearning courses and LMS communicate.

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There are a couple of popular eLearning standards.

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SCORM stands for Shareable Content Object Reference Module. This is the most popular eLearning standard.

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Other standards are Tin Can/xAPI, AICC.

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Elearning industry has a great article about these standards.

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4. Mobile Friendly

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Mobile Learning Market will be worth $37.60 Billion by 2020.

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The next stage of elearning is learning on the go.

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With many options such as desktops, laptops, smartphones, tablets available at our disposal, a responsive LMS system must allow you to create and access courses on any device without compromising the quality.

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It must also support micro-learning and offline learning capabilities.

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5. Social Features

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With the rapid rise in the use of social media, the way we consume and share the content has changed forever.

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To meet the needs of today’s customers, having social features as a part of an LMS has become imperative.

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The best part of eLearning is not just the learning alone but the ability to share your thoughts, discuss and collaborate with your peers.

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A good LMS must provide with,

  1. Live chat facilities [spacer height=”10px”]
  2. Discussion forums [spacer height=”10px”]
  3. Webinar [spacer height=”10px”]
  4. Surveys [spacer height=”10px”]
  5. File sharing facility [spacer height=”10px”]
  6. Questions and Answer (FAQs) [spacer height=”10px”]
  7. Newsfeed [spacer height=”10px”]
  8. Content and Training ratings [spacer height=”10px”]
  9. Content sharing facility [spacer height=”10px”]
  10. RSS feed [spacer height=”10px”]
  11. Mail notifications [spacer height=”10px”]
  12. Web conference [spacer height=”10px”]
  13. Screen sharing and recording features [spacer height=”10px”]
  14. Content and Training reviews [spacer height=”10px”]
  15. Content recommendations (Most popular, highest rated and so on)

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6. Course Catalogue and Enrollment

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With the rise of learning on demand and learning on the go, there is a massive demand for MOOCs, off-the-shelf and bespoke courses.

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Few LMS have built their own e-commerce store, which enables students to buy more courses and certifications online.

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7. Advanced Reports and Dashboards

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“In GOD we trust; all others must bring data” – William Edwards Deming.

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The analysis and reporting feature of an LMS is perhaps the most important of all the other features.

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After all, What gets measured gets managed!

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A good LMS must be able to provide Ad hoc reports in addition to standard built-in reports.

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Some of the most popular types of reports one can expect from any good LMS are

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  1. Course evaluation report [spacer height=”10px”]
  2. Quiz and Assessment reports [spacer height=”10px”]
  3. Course progress report [spacer height=”10px”]
  4. Time spent report [spacer height=”10px”]
  5. Active courses report [spacer height=”10px”]
  6. Active users report [spacer height=”10px”]
  7. Certification report [spacer height=”10px”]
  8. User report [spacer height=”10px”]
  9. Logs report (to track the engagement) [spacer height=”10px”]
  10. Polls report [spacer height=”10px”]
  11. Learning path report.

8. Security

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The security of your data is of utmost importance. A good LMS should have the latest security protocols in place.

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Unfortunately, this feature of LMS is easily overlooked.

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At the bare minimum, a Learning Management system must have,

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  1. SSL encryption certificate (Hosted on a secure connection (HTTPS) [spacer height=”10px”]
  2. Double-opt in email verification to verify the authenticity of the user/subscribers [spacer height=”10px”]
  3. Excellent password protection and expiry policy [spacer height=”10px”]
  4. An active IT support team to provide regular product updates [spacer height=”10px”]
  5. Data recovery policy [spacer height=”10px”]
  6. SSO – Single Sign-On [spacer height=”10px”]

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Conclusion

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The decision to go for a new Learning Management System is a strategic one. This involves reviewing your existing system, training goal strategy, and budget.

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As online behaviour evolves, LMS vendors need to adapt to these changes. With a plethora of options available, one can get easily overwhelmed while choosing an LMS.

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But what differentiates an ordinary LMS from an LMS on steroids is the ability to go beyond providing a platform for learning, the ability to bridge the gap between industry and academia, the ability to mentor.

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That is how you can get the real ROI.