According to xAPI.com, a Learning Record Store (LRS) is the heart of any xAPI ecosystem. If you are not sure what an xAPI ecosystem is, please check out our previous blog on this subject here. Essentially, xAPI-enabled applications generate metadata in the form of ‘statements.’ The application sends these statements to an LRS server that then receives, stores and forwards statements to other LRS servers.
With an LRS server and strong analytical reporting tools, you can capture information about any experience, regardless of where and in what format it takes place. An LRS is a standardized tool to receive, store and forward metadata for a wide variety of activities and events that may or may not be delivered and tracked within your learning management system (LMS).
xAPI enabled applications can include but are not limited to:
- traditional self-paced eLearning modules
- videos (including YouTube and MP4 files)
- articles, web pages, or entire web sites
- VR/AR simulators
- observation tools
…and many other offline real-world experiences that a learner may encounter. By gathering data about all experiences, you can better measure the business impact of your training resources to determine which methods and tools are most effective.
For example…. one organization may require all employees to take a course in cyber security and then measure the effectiveness of that content by sending out a company-wide phishing email as a ‘test’ to see how well staff follow the security protocol that was covered during their training.
Another organization may follow up training provided to their sales teams by reviewing xAPI data generated from their corporate CRM to determine the impact of training and assign additional learning interventions as needed to improve results and productivity.
We all know business unit leaders are not interested in post-training satisfaction surveys and comments on how the learners ‘felt’ after completing the course or taking a test. Rather, they want insightful details on the impact of training on the business and the ways in which it is helping to achieve corporate goals – or in the public sector – a government agency’s mission.
In order to better position your training team within your organization, determine what types of information can lead to true insights and pave the way for improvements and real change. You may want to ask questions like:
How have customer satisfaction levels been impacted by training?
What training is utilized by our most effective sales reps?
Are resellers driving more revenue post-training? And if so, then how long after training is completed are increased revenues sustained?
Next, think about what data you need to answer those questions and what systems you need to enable in order to capture it. xAPI, via the LRS, gives you an easy, standards-based way of capturing that data. Rather than making a large investment in an expensive, one-off custom data integration project, you can instead use xAPI statements to send the information to an LRS. There, you can combine it with existing LMS data and finally close the loop for a complete picture.
Interested in learning more about ways you can gain benefits from the LRS and xAPI? Download our new report, The xAPI Experience today!
And if you would like to learn more about Meridian LMS, which includes a fully capable LRS out of the box, visit our solutions page.