When choosing an LMS, the company is just as important as the system. Here’s how to tell if you’ve found the right LMS company for your organization.

5 ways to know if it’s the right LMS company for you

Maybe you’ve been shopping for an LMS for a while. Or maybe you’re looking to upgrade your current system. Either way, you may have a sense of what you want in an LMS, but how can you be sure it’s the right LMS company for you?

How to narrow down your list of LMS companies

To know if an LMS is the right fit for you, it all starts with you. You must first establish what you need. Every organization is unique with different goals, needs, requirements, and constraints. And these uniquenesses will serve as the ultimate guiding light in determining if an LMS is for you or not.

Poor LMS fit often happens because organizations don’t define their needs deeply enough before meeting with LMS companies. Instead, they rely on the vendor to showcase their product without really thinking through how they might first use it within their organization.

Understandably so, because it can be difficult to predict until you begin using the LMS every day. But clearly defining your needs upfront can help curb picking an ill-suited learning management system. To help you narrow down your needs and your list of LMS software companies, here are 5 ways to know if you’ve found the right LMS for you.

It has the features you need

To start, outline your must-have features. These are your non-negotiables. Are video conferencing tools a must? What about version controls? Do you need certain e-commerce tools, payment processing options, or languages? Make sure your list goes beyond just bullet points. Include as many details as possible to give the LMS company a good sense of what you’re looking to accomplish.

It’s helpful to gather stakeholder input during this process. You may even want to form some sort of committee to solicit feedback. Involve trainers, administrators, different department decision-makers, IT personnel, and other key stakeholders. Their input is crucial as they can provide insights into their own requirements and challenges.

Once you nail down your must-haves, then create your wishlist. These are features that you wish an LMS company had, but it’s not a dealbreaker if they don’t. Again, this varies by organization, but maybe it’s virtual reality capability, certain automation features, branding requirements, customization needs, or specific reporting tools.

After you’ve nailed down your list of non-negotiables and nice-to-haves, evaluate how LMS software companies respond to these queries. A lot of LMSs have the capability to do most things. But to what extent or how easily will vary dramatically. Some may be able to do what you need, but only if you purchase third-party tools. And others may require a complex process to accomplish it.

To really evaluate these things, it’s helpful to also create scenarios or use cases for the vendor of your feature list. Have them walk you through each of these and think about how easily the LMS is able to perform the actions.

It has the features your learners need

When it comes to picking the right LMS company for your organization, the fit is two-fold. It needs to be a great fit for administrators. And it also needs to be the right fit for the users of the LMS. Because, ultimately, the main goal of a learning management system is to educate its learners.

To identify the needs of your learners, you first need to know your audience. Think about its size, age demographic, previous experience with other systems, and goals. This is another area where you may want to solicit feedback. Ask your learners what they care most about when it comes to learning as well as their likes and dislikes if they’ve previously used an LMS.

Maybe your target audience values mobile learning or learning they can fit into their schedule, according to their terms. In that case, a mobile app or on-demand learning would be a need. Or perhaps you have a remote workforce. So social learning is valuable to your learners.

And maybe they want upskilling and professional development opportunities. So an LMS with tailored learning paths is important.

Write these considerations down and add your own to the list. From your previous experiences, is there anything you think is important to your learner base? Gamification and interactive tools are always high on most administrators’ lists because they are the single best way to engage learners and increase course completion rates.

Once you’ve outlined your learner needs, prioritize them as non-negotiables and nice-to-haves. 
Then, evaluate them against your list of LMS software companies. Who best fits your requirements?

It has the right integrations

Integrations are invaluable for a learning management system because they enable the system to seamlessly interact with other tools, software, and platforms that your organization uses. Essentially, integrations allow data and processes to flow smoothly between your LMS and other systems.

This reduces manual data entry and repetitive tasks, leading to increased efficiency and productivity. It also helps to create a unified experience for users. Learners and administrators can access various tools and resources without switching between multiple platforms, leading to a more seamless and user-friendly experience.

On top of that, this streamlined workflow ensures that data remains consistent across different systems. When a learner completes a course, for example, their progress can be automatically updated in other connected systems like CRM or HR software.

Additionally, integrations enable the creation of automated workflows. For instance, when a new employee joins the company, the integration between an LMS and HR software can automatically assign them relevant training courses.

Integrations are important. And you’ll want to make sure that the LMS company you choose has the right ones for your organization. Native integrations are great because they make the process easy.

But an Open API is just as good because it can help you connect to nearly anything. And has increased customization options. It does, however, require an IT team, so it’s a must for you to have one in-house or the vendor to provide one for this option to work.

It offers the right support before and after launch

Support is a vital consideration when deciding if an LMS company is the right fit for your organization. Assess if the LMS provider offers reliable support to help you get familiar with the platform and ongoing support for technical issues after you begin using it. This will help you and your users make the most of your LMS.

First, evaluate the onboarding resources and process of the LMS company. This is especially important during the initial implementation phase to help users become familiar with the LMS's functionalities. Onboarding helps users become familiar with the LMS's interface, features, and intricacies. And it reduces confusion and increases user confidence in using the system.

Proper onboarding ensures that users understand and can utilize the full range of the LMS, maximizing the benefits and capabilities of the platform. A well-designed onboarding process also accelerates the learning curve. Users can quickly adapt to the new system, reducing the time it takes to become proficient with it.

Next, evaluate the LMS company’s ongoing support offerings. Users, both learners and administrators, might encounter technical issues or difficulties when using the LMS. When problems arise, having access to knowledgeable support staff can help diagnose issues, provide solutions, and guide users through troubleshooting steps.

Having reliable support ensures that these issues can be addressed promptly, minimizing disruptions to the learning process. In turn, it enhances the user experience and reduces frustration.

It’s inevitable that you’ll need training to begin using an LMS. And ongoing support after onboarding is over. If an LMS company doesn’t offer both of these, no matter how well it performs in other areas, it’s smart to go with another LMS company. This is one area that will pay off dividends and one key area you’ll know if an LMS is for you or not.

It offers a free trial

From clothes to buying a car, the best way to know if something is the right fit is to try it before you buy. A free trial allows you to interact with the LMS firsthand. You can navigate through the interface, explore features, and understand how the system works in a real-world scenario.

During the trial, you can evaluate the user-friendliness of the LMS. Is the interface intuitive? Can learners and administrators easily navigate and use the platform? A trial also enables you to assess the LMS's features and functionalities. Are the tools and options offered aligned with your organization's learning objectives and requirements?

And you can test the LMS's technical stability, such as page loading times and responsiveness, to ensure it can handle the volume of users and content you anticipate.

Essentially, a trial provides real-world insights into how the LMS performs under actual usage conditions. This can help you identify any performance issues, integration limitations, or other challenges before committing to a purchase.

A trial gives you confidence in your decision to invest in a particular LMS. You can base your decision on actual experience rather than relying solely on marketing materials or recommendations.

It’s important to note that some LMS companies may not explicitly offer a free trial. And trials may look different at every company. Some LMS companies may provide a completely free trial of the system. And others may allow you to use their sandbox. Both are great options for seeing how the system really performs.

An LMS company should let you have a free trial of their system, even if they don’t explicitly advertise it. If a company refuses, then you should take caution if it’s the right fit for you. A company that is transparent enough to let you see the system for yourself before you buy is one that’s worthwhile.

Even the best LMS companies will have some but not all of these things

When you’re investing so much time and money into an LMS, it makes sense that you’d want it to fit your needs perfectly. While this may be true of some organizations –  they found an LMS 
that meets all their requirements and doesn’t need any changes – that’s not the case for most.

Since every organization is different, it is difficult for an LMS to be everything to everybody. Even with the top LMS companies, you may need to compromise on one or two things. That’s not always the case. But that’s why it’s important to prioritize your needs and wants.

By prioritizing these things, you’ll be able to know where you can and can’t cut back. And you can do a better comparison of LMS companies that fit correctly where you need it most.

Tovuti LMS Corporation centralizes training, making it fun, easy, and data-driven

Tovuti is a top-rated LMS that reduces the need for third-party platforms – and your tech stack – by consolidating features into one easy-to-use platform. By leveraging Tovuti LMS, you alleviate administrative burden and make learning fun and easy for users.

With Tovuti, administrators can easily create engaging courses, automate their training program, track their efforts to make effective business decisions, provide tailored learning experiences, and more.

And with the most robust gamified and interactive features on the market, including over 40 plug-and-play gamified features, leaderboards, and virtual classrooms, learners are sure to retain more information and have fun doing it!

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