There is a massive change happening globally in terms of learning. Online learning is becoming the new normal of education and corporate training. The pandemic has made us more dependent on online learning, keeping in mind the spread of COVID-19 and the importance of social distancing. The times have changed, and there is a lesser need for physical presence to conduct training and educational workshops with everything going digital. With an increased demand for eLearning, it is necessary to know the important learning management system features that make an LMS stand out. Understanding the background work that goes behind an LMS will help you design a course that will stand out.
What is an LMS?
Many people ask us – what is a learning management system?
“A learning management system is a software application used to administer, track, report, and deliver training.”
A Learning Management System comprises certain features that your business organization can utilize to train employees, or partners, which benefits your corporate organization.
It reduces manual effort to complete tasks and helps create, assign, track growth, and train in one place.
Importance of LMS System
LMS System serves many benefits, like reducing overall costs and they also ensure data security. Not just that, it tracks eLearning resources in one place that makes delivering and managing more comfortable.
A well-functioning Learning Management System allows you to reduce additional costs like hiring trainers, place rentals, travel expenditure, printing costs, etc.
Also, you don’t have to worry about losing important data, as in eLearning, everything is stored in the cloud in one place. Here are some advantages of cloud-based LMS systems.
When the leading team member uploads all the learning material in LMS and publishes them, the audience can access all the information. An eLearning platform’s advantage is that everyone can gain access to it, irrespective of their location. It is one of the main reasons LMS is popular with businesses of all sizes, for global audiences based on different time zones.
Tracking progress manually makes it very difficult and also leaves a lot of scope for errors. A learning management system allows tracking employees’ progress, management trainees to ascertain who has completed their training, the growth rate, and analyze their performance. It also leaves no scope for errors.
As a learning management system platform offers information in an organized and structured manner, it reduces the time spent in online training. For example, if someone falters in a specific area, they don’t need to undergo the complete training again and only study the information they need.
It reduces dependency on people as all the information is stored in the software. You have to log in with your registered ID and no longer have to depend on trainers and seniors to learn and improve your skills.
The Essential Learning Management System Features
Before we list down the essential features you should be looking for in an LMS, here are two questions that you must ask before choosing one:
- Does the LMS create a more satisfactory user experience for the learners and admins?
- Does the LMS have all the required features to conduct online training?
The features of an LMS will differ based on the goals and structure of an organization. However, with so many options out there, it becomes challenging to decide how to choose a learning management system.
We have compiled a list of the must-have features that are most desired by most organizations today.
The LMS you opt for should be compatible with other devices. There may be a possibility that the eLearning or online training courses are mobile portables, but the LMS opted for doesn’t support a mobile workforce. You cannot afford a situation like this.
A portal that is easy to navigate makes it more user friendly. Any LMS today must provide an easy to use interface and software that doesn’t require constant updating. It must have a transparent design and be flexible to change the layouts and techniques based on its needs.
It must always be easy to navigate for someone with no technical background and simple to operate for everyone.
3. Tracking Data
Another feature of a Learning Management System is tracking a user’s data from the stored data. It gives a better idea to track the users’ progress and how the courses have been doing in one place. Designing the methods and content becomes more manageable based on this feature. It analyses the area that needs improvement and alternations and improves the training process. One of the most important learning management system features is the ability to track data and assess results.
4. Course Materials
An LMS must be able to provide the contents of a course to the learners or trainers. It makes it necessary to make the creating of a course user friendly and straightforward.
The LMS must allow you to select, drag, change, and arrange content based on your needs. It must also support various formats like PDF, audio, video, slides, and, most notably, live virtual classrooms.
The LMS must assess learners’ areas of interest and how much they have grasped from the course as online assessments and exams.
5. Easy Sign In
The LMS must not restrict you or take much of your time in the sign in or navigation process and offer a pleasant experience for students, trainers.
Users should not waste time performing admin duties.
The SSO or Single Sign-On allows the users to log into one system. The single login system saves time by avoiding the unnecessary hassle of logging in multiple times.
6. Automatic Processes
LMS should reduce manual work. A good LMS should minimize administration time and omit repetitive admin tasks. The LMS should integrate with the HR system or CRM and automate adding and removing users.
The LMS must keep the users updated about training, the assessment score, feedback after training, assignment submission, methodically, and on time. Therefore, the LMS software must send out notifications as emails.
7. Mobile Support
Gone are the days when people resorted to desktops and laptops for browsing. Today’s generation depends on phones for browsing, shopping, watching movies, etc. It is no surprise that many users prefer to register for courses online and undergo training through mobile-friendly applications.
An LMS today must support mobile learning. With an increase in busy lifestyles learning on the go has become very popular. To avoid any inconvenience to users and to gain popularity, ensure that various browsers and mobile devices support the app.
The LMS must operate smoothly on important mobile operating systems like iOS and Andriod. It should also support offline mode, which allows the users to access data without the internet.
8. Motivational Tools
The truth is that people do not want to put in the required amount of hard work all the time. They need a little push and encouragement. The built-in motivational tools enhance the training with several game mechanics and boost the will power of one’s learning journey through gamification.
For example, after they complete a course, assignment, or exam, you can give them badges or scores to make learning more exciting in the LMS. The good LMS vendors also make sure that gamification is in-built into their LMS software.
9. Technical Support
A good LMS will always have dependable technical support. There could be a situation where there may be trouble to upload content, or a live classroom feature isn’t working, a condition where urgent technical support is required. A case like this can become frustrating if one reverts with an auto-email instead of being offered support.
An LMS must have quality tech support that reacts quickly, troubleshoots effectively and on time, and is reachable at all times.
Last but not least is the most important LMS feature- Security. The LMS should ensure that the company’s data is secured and the security protocols are well adhered to.