How to Choose a Learning Management System (LMS)
Choosing the right LMS is crucial to the success of your eLearning strategy. With hundreds of learning management system (LMS) vendors available, choosing the perfect fit is a daunting task.
After a couple of demonstrations, most LMSs start to look and sound the same. You could end up picking an LMS that you are overpaying for, with features you don’t even need. So, how to choose an LMS? That’s why we’ve mapped out a structure that will help you evaluate each option against your specific LMS requirements.
Follow these 5 steps instead of googling the words “Learning Management System” and scheduling a demo with the first five results you see. It will help you in your search.
Analyze your LMS needs
Discuss with decision makers and fellow colleagues to define what your organizational needs are for an LMS. Will this be the first time your organization has used an LMS? If so how do people learn within your organization and how will an LMS fix the issues faced when rolling out L&D?
If you’re already using an LMS, what are the reasons you to want to switch? Are there specific features you need that your current LMS doesn’t have?
In this discussion phase, you should consult your IT department or provider for their input. This helps to inform your strategic, operational and technical drivers to narrow down your LMS requirements.
Define your LMS requirements
With your LMS objectives set, it’s easier for you to evaluate options and choose which LMS that best fits your company. Concentrate on what your admins and learners need from the LMS. These requirements always vary, however, between 30-60 requirements should give you the right level of detail you need to start your LMS journey.
Requirements generally fall into these categories: functional, technical and cost. Prioritize your requirements as it’s important you align them with each of the LMS products and features. This will help inform your purchase decision.
Vetting your LMS options
When you begin your search, you should have established 8-10 distinctive requirements to help narrow down your choices. Typically these needs center around a number of key features or workflows.
When you have defined your top 10 needs, then start to narrow down your search. These distinctive functions allow you to focus your search and align specific needs with more suitable products. Ask yourself the following five questions funnels out the LMS’s that won’t fit your organization:
- Does the LMS offer the essential features that I need?
- What are the data tracking capabilities of the LMS?
- What do I know about the experience or background of the LMS vendor?
- What type of customer support is offered with the LMS?
- Can they provide me with a free trial and/or live demo?
Evaluating each LMS
This phase adds clarity to the murky waters. By following the steps outlined in the figure below, you’ll be able to start to identify the true contenders. By adhering to each stage in this approach you will achieve the best results.
Choosing an LMS
Now that you have crossed out the non-qualifying products using the above steps, start to gather the relevant stakeholders and identify the best two or three options based on the additional features each vendor offer. These additional features should include pricing, support options and implementation time.
This is the final stage of your search so don’t hesitate to contact the final vendors to walk you through these additions before making the ultimate decision.
Get the best LMS for you
The best LMS for you is the one that satisfies your needs best. That includes the way in which the LMS vendor does business and supports you.
Why not check out our features checklist to make it easier for to check off the requirements on your list.
Schedule a Demo
Train your employees, partners, and customers with LearnUpon. The powerful learning management system that has the features and a knowledgeable team you need to achieve training success.
Include LearnUpon in your evaluation process: Schedule a demo now.