Learning & Development

Is it Time to Switch to a New LMS?

While 92% of organizations use one or more LMSs, only 9% are very satisfied and almost 20% are not at all satisfied with their current learning technology platform provider. (Brandon Hall Group, Learning Technology 2019). There are numerous reasons why these organizations are unhappy with their current LMS vendor.

Modern organizations need to adapt their training strategies to handle constant change. More than half (55%) of organizations have had their current LMS in place for three years or even longer (Brandon Hall Group, Learning Technology 2019 ). Over time, the organization has evolved, and training requirements have changed, but often their legacy elearning platform is no longer fit-for-purpose or the vendor doesn’t provide adequate support and services to meet the client’s developing needs.

Based on the recent Digital Learning Realities research by Fosway Group in 2019, half of organizations felt that their current learning platforms weren’t fit for the modern workforce. In 2020, the share had already increased to 65%.

Also in 2020, the Covid pandemic created unprecedented changes. With the increase in remote work, many organizations need a better learning platform and vendors who do not overpromise and under deliver on their product roadmaps.

Because of the increasing strategic importance of corporate learning and dissatisfaction with current learning platforms, 43% of organizations are looking to replace their LMS and out of those, 50% are looking to replace it already within the next year or sooner (Brandon Hall Group, Learning Technology 2019).

When the legacy LMS you have in place isn’t a good fit for your organization’s needs anymore, it can hold you back rather than support your business performance. But research suggests that dissatisfaction with your current solution is often not enough for many clients to overcome resistance to change. In order to make a change, organizations need a clear vision for what the future can be and an understanding of initial concrete steps to take to move in that direction.

Below are areas to consider when considering a switch to another LMS:

User experience

What if your LMS could easily adapt to different training needs and audiences (such as internal vs. external learners)? Imagine an interface that is consumer-grade and familiar to engage users and makes it simple to find what they need to complete required and optional learning. It is difficult to keep user—both employees and learners in the extended enterprise— engaged if they feel the system is too complicated or the user interface is outdated.

Learning needs to be easily available anytime, anywhere, using any device. Organizations should make sure their LMS has a mobile-first approach, especially if their workforce is dispersed.

Ever-increasing compliance training requirements

Compliance remains among the top priorities for learning and development: 88% of organizations say compliance is a medium or high priority for their organization. (Brandon Hall Group, Optimizing Learning to Drive Performance 2020).

If an organization operates in a highly regulated industry where compliance management is critical to success, it must make sure that their LMS has robust compliance training and reporting features.

You might also want to check a provider’s client references to assure they have experience working with other clients with similar compliance requirements.

Data and analytics

While training has become a strategic focus for organizations, there’s an increasing need to understand how it impacts business performance. This is why 71% of organizations are currently planning a moderate or heavy investment in alignment between learning strategy and business goals and 67% in data reporting and analytics solutions. (Brandon Hall Group, HCM Outlook 2020).

Imagine if you could easily correlate your learning analytics data with business performance metrics or mission success. To make this a reality, ensure your next LMS has robust analytics features, strong xAPI capabilities and user-friendly custom reporting.

LMS built for your needs

Because every organization has unique training needs, many of them struggle with a “one-size-fits-all” LMS. No LMS suits every organization, so only rarely is an “out-of-the-box” LMS a good fit for any specific needs.

The learning platform provider should be focused on learning management and committed to helping your organization achieve your strategic learning and business goals.

While technology offers lots of potential, you will also need to think about how to manage the implementation, make sure the solution can be tailored for your organization’s needs and that it is scalable over time.

LMS as a part of a software ecosystem

The LMS doesn’t operate in a silo, it is usually part of an entire technology ecosystem. Therefore, one of the top requirements for a modern LMS is the ability to seamlessly integrate with other enterprise systems. This need requires an LMS with a robust set of APIs.

For success over time, an organization must make sure the LMS can be integrated with other systems that are already in place or may be implemented in the future.

Next Steps

Every LMS purchase should start with defining the specific requirements – for the learning platform, as well as for the provider. After all, you deserve an LMS provider who is a trusted strategic partner and with whom you have a direct relationship with during your entire client journey.

Based on recent research by Brandon Hall Group, only 14% of organizations are very satisfied with how their learning platform provider partners in their organization’s success, and almost 50% are now looking for a vendor that is capable of becoming a strategic partner for their success. (Brandon Hall Group, Learning technology 2019).

There are several areas to focus on as you are looking to build a long-term strategic partnership with your next LMS provider. You should understand the product development roadmap over time, making sure you’ll get high-quality customer support, at a total cost of ownership that is worth your investment.

Most LMS vendors use a third-party solution provider to manage the implementation process. This can cause disappointment, as often what gets delivered, is very different from what was promised. You should select a provider with in-house resources to offer product implementations, professional services, and support, to build a strategic relationship over time.

In our 7 Steps in Selecting an LMS white paper, we have listed the key considerations to select the right LMS for your organization. Download it today.

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