To deliver elearning within your own organisation, you need a Learning Management System (LMS). At a minimum, an LMS allows you to create accounts for users, enrol them in online courses and record their completion. More advanced LMSs allow you to create and track other types of training such as webinars and practical assessments, assign training by roles and automatically send out notifications to people when their training is due. Some LMSs are integrated in other larger systems and some will integrate with other systems through APIs.
So which one do you need? Here are a few questions to ask.
- Do you only need elearning, or do you need to use it for other training as well?
- What records do you need? Do you need complex reports, or just simple records of attendance?
- Do you need to host the system on your own server, or are you able to use a cloud based system?
- Do you need different levels of access? For example, should Supervisors be able to see more data than other employees?
- How many users are you going to have?
- Do you need it to integrate with another system. For example, you may want your LMS to exchange data with your HR system so when there is a new employee, they are automatically added to the LMS.
- Do you need to assign training by roles?
- Do you need the system to send notifications to people when their training expires or there is a new course they need to do?
- How many courses (or how much memory) will you need to run?
- What is your budget?
All of these questions need to be answered before you can start identifying which LMSs may work for you. Always talk with other people in your industry and find out what they are using and whether they are happy. Then make sure that the system suits your needs. A good LMS is a vital investment in training so getting the right one is extremely important.