Choosing a LMS to manage and deliver your learning and development initiatives is one of the most important decisions any training organization can make, not to mention one of the most daunting decisions! Though most LMSs contain similar functionality; i.e. course management, record keeping, assessments, etc., the systems and the underlying support for the systems are inherently different. The differences may seem subtle, but in the end it’s worth taking a deeper dive to see what exactly you’re comparing.
For example, nearly all LMSs on the market today boast reporting capabilities…but are they the reports that you need? Are they customizable? Here’s another great example, all LMS vendors provide service…but is it in a user forum, do you have a primary contact with the vendor for troubleshooting, or do you have to pay extra for customer support services?
Another factor to consider when choosing an LMS system is the reputation of the vendor. In a market that’s fairly saturated, there are still new LMS vendors entering all the time. Would you want to partner with a vendor that’s still “wet behind the ears” per se, or would you prefer to work with a vendor who has longevity and experience in the marketplace? With longevity and experience usually comes wisdom, and if you’re new to online training, a vendor that can offer you guidance is like having an extra employee on your team!
These are but a few important considerations that you should look in to before choosing an LMS; and so you see now, it’s not always apples to apples there’s a lot of apples to orange, and in the end price may be right, but is the long term value?
Susan Distasio | Marketing SME | ePath Learning, Inc.