Shopping for an LMS?

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Choosing the right LMS for your organization is no small feat. There are many factors that need to be taken into account in this process. Considering that every organization is unique to itself with its people, culture, practices and goals, it is extremely important to find a solution that will acclimate to your organization’s distinct characteristics and help it thrive.

Watch our recorded webinar to learn:

  • 3 top reasons organizations are using an LMS and how they’re using them
  • How to identify what your organization actually needs
  • The real power and importance of Learner Engagement

Or read the transcription:

0:00:01.5 Whitney Baker: So thank you everyone for joining. Learnsoft is hosting our first webinar to discuss shopping for an LMS. The goal today is for us to help you figure out what you might need for your organization, and how to make the right choice. So thank you for joining. My name is Whitney Baker, I'm the LMS project manager for Learnsoft Technology Group. Since2020, prior to that my experience was as as a LMS director in the healthcare spectrum, servicing40,000 employees, and overall have about 10 years of LMS experience. So, it's really important to understand the need of an LMS which is why we're here today and hopefully we can help. If you have an LMS, if you're transitioning to a new LMS, what kind of questions and things you need to know. So what we're gonna go over and learn today are the three top reasons why an organization can benefit from having LMS and how they can use it. We're also going to identify what your organizational needs actually are as you're shopping for an LMS. And finally, we're gonna talk about the learner experience, the end user experience, your employee engagement, all of those aspects.

0:01:37.6 WB: So the webinar is going to be 30 minutes, we're gonna cover content first, and then open up the floor for questions to address, and then we're also gonna open up a support line for you to reach out if you have any further questions after this webinar.

0:02:01.7 WB: Fun facts: The state of LMS today. What we've seen is that 90% of companies useLMSs as of 2021. This is an 84% increase from 2020. A lot of this is driven I think from the pandemic, making it vital for us to have safe and essential training available for the end user, for our employees whether are remote or virtual. All the aspects that this world is looking at, so the LMS market is growing, and it's consistently growing and it's now a critical piece to a successful organizations growth as far as compliance and regulatory needs and employee retention. So, the top three reasons of meeting an LMS is first compliance, then onboarding and general HR across the board, this is something an LMS is essential for in a company's needs. And we're seeing this across all markets, even if you're a non regulatory organization, being able to successfully onboard your employees is vital. So we're gonna get into each of these three critical items on this webinar.

0:03:40.2 WB: First and foremost is compliance. An LMS is the perfect avenue for keeping your risk management low and being able to speak to the training, education that's been provided to your employees, whether you're in a highly regulated organization and industry, or if you just need to be able to speak to what you've trained your employees on. So some stakeholders you wanna think about when bringing compliance into the conversation is looking at those job requirements, your field requirements, whatever industry you're trying to service. What is needed, if it's on an annual basis, if it's government regulated, there's so many opportunities for your learning management system to help assist you in keeping compliant and being able to speak to it on a moment's notice through reporting, through tracking, through your manager roles.

0:04:57.1 WB: What we are seeing too is that if you're not tracking your compliance regulation training, it can cost a ton of money and so, it's very vital for an organization to be able to speak to the education they're providing upon onboarding and throughout the life of the employee in theorganization. And that goes across the board from everyone up to leadership. So an LMS is really avital key for you to be able to speak to the education that you are affording and providing.

0:05:48.5 WB: Onboarding is an essential part of every organization. And as we're aware, we need to keep track of what is being done at the initial start of our employment process. An LMS is a fantastic tool for you to be able to go back and see what was done, what was presented when, how, why, in order for us to know how we successfully onboarded our employees. And so an LMS specifically is great for the employee engagement experience, right from the start, for any organization, and you can customize that as far as what your requirements are, but having that ability to touch the employee experience right away and have it not be a pen to paper or documentation, paper documentation process is really important. So onboarding is extremelyimportant. Some stakeholders you wanna consider with onboarding and that discussion is your HR team, recruiters, your possible your IS or IT team. These are crucial players in understanding what is vital for your onboarding process.

0:07:24.5 WB: So, an LMS is a fantastic way for you to showcase what your employees were presented from the get go. And it also shows that you're investing in your employees. A lot of times, organizations will include specifics to their organizational or industry needs. And that helps the employer know what they're getting into. So, it's just an increased communication that can be happened at the onboarding process, and then referred back to as needed for tracking training and reporting needs and future development.

0:08:17.1 WB: One thing to talk about with onboarding is employee retention. Organizations across all industries invest a significant amount of money to bring new people on board. It doesn't matter what industry, you're investing in the employee before they even start day one. And so, what we've seen is that the utilization of an LMS really helps solidify the employee engagement, which we'll get into next further. So, 94% of employees believe that they stay with an organization for a longer period if they're involved in their learning and development. This also speaks to the ability of an LMS to show ongoing employee development. Perhaps you have a job role you wanna achieve.If you provide that education, and it's documented and tracked, it's helpful for the employee to see.And this is where we're moving in the LMS industry, as far as being able to apply what a specific employee needs at the jump at their first start of their onboarding, all the way to how do we maintain the employment and employee retention.

0:09:56.5 WB: So, shifting gears. Here's kind of the start of what do you need to know, what questions do you need to start asking, perhaps you have an LMS, as we're seeing it's 90% of organizations have LMSs that's probably higher now that we're in 2022. And what questions you need to ask, and what's the purpose of this conversation? So, every organization is gonna have different needs, different requirements, different levels of employees, different levels of expected retention and LMS is going to be your go to experience for 99% of your employees, that's the learner as we're calling them, or the user experience.0:10:52.4 WB: It's really important to keep that in mind because your LMS is going to be their resource, their tool, their educational path, their onboarding, all of the above. 98­99% of the time it's going to be all of your staff. So it's really important to look at what is that learner and user experience look like. Another thing to keep in mind is any current integrations that are happening within your organization. Maybe you are using a third party vendor for content or training or regulatory requirements, and you need to be able to speak to that and have that flow seamlessly with your LMS.

0:11:50.6 WB: So, integrations are extremely important. Also, if you have an existing LMS. What is your integration time requirements for transitioning to a new LMS. Some LMSs can transition very quickly and seamlessly within a month or two or six, and maybe an integration requires 12months. So, thinking about what your organization needs. Realizing too that you're partnering two different teams together to make that possible. And, or several if you use third party vendors.

0:12:36.4 WB: An LMS is extremely powerful as far as providing in a reporting output of communicating exactly what was trained on and tracking the response to that training maybe someone failed that training and what was the reaction to that training being failed reporting capabilities is organization specific. If you need to speak to, I just hired and I onboarded, and that's all I need to say. That's one thing versus you need to show that you have... There's like reactive training that's occurring because of what you're reporting is speaking to. So being mindful, ahead of time of the reporting capabilities that you'll need to look into is really important when shopping for an LMS.

0:13:38.7 WB: Another factor is knowing your organization's needs as far as technology flexibility.Is this something that we will just need out of the box. And you just want something that's gonna deliver content, your training and tracking and that's the only conversation you really need to have, or is there a need for specific customization maybe dependent on your industry or your market. So, having that mindset of what we need heading into the conversation is really important as far as flexibility. And then I mentioned this before implementation is another key factor. If you have a time crunch of how long it will take for you to implement a new system. And, or if you wanna take the time. It just all depends every, every organization and company is different.

0:14:43.1 WB: And then of course, the aspect of security and support, they go hand in hand really as to defining in an LMS system who has access to what employee records are available, who can see what managers can do and leadership. There's all those elements that you can define and design in an LMS. And then also them identify what support you would need for those different levels of hierarchy.

0:15:27.3 WB: So, remembering our end users is so important, because as I mentioned before, 98­.99% of the users in your LMS will be your employees, they'll be the learners, not the system administrators, not the leadership, not the managers, it's majority of going to be the end user. And taking into account all of the job positions job roles and technical aspects of what an LMS entails it's really important to have that conversation, as to what's the end user experience? When I'm signing in for the first time, what is that experience like and that conversation is really important because you're reporting on their experience at the end of the day. And so how effective is accessing your LMS. Are they understanding where to go and navigate an LMS. Maybe this is their first exposure to a learning management system that's very common.

0:16:45.9 WB: And the next level is the manager who needs to report and be able to speak to the education that's been provided. How intuitive is that as well, for the manager for a leader instructors who are building the courses and the content and the training, is the that intuitive for them to be able to go in and create new content and deliver it successfully and then we can report on it. It's almost like a ripple effect of several things need to align in order for it to make sense and work best for your organization.

0:17:25.4 WB: And then the last question feeding back into the compliance element is ultimately at the end of the day, what is your regulatory requirements and how is that met with your LMS. Is it through effective reporting? Is it through understanding how to properly assign and create structured education on an annual regulatory basis? All those questions kind of need to be looked at because your end users... Ultimately, is everyone. However, it's pieces and parts. And then, finally, is those that have to speak to the education requirements being fulfilled like your HR team, your compliance team. Is the system giving you the proper tools in order for you to be able to report to what has been done and provided by by the organization.

0:18:42.5 WB: So highlights of today in our webinar are we looked at the three reasons why organizations will need an element, and can best use an LMS. And we've looked at what a specific organization needs. How that can impact the decision of which way you go which LMS you select, and why one might work better for your organizational needs. And then lastly we talked about the learner experience, which is so important 'cause as we spoke about it, it's the majority of your endusers. And so, our goal for today is to just start thinking through what is the first conversations, who should be at the table, the first time you're thinking of an LMS and what you're thinking your organization needs and and just identifying those three things is a great first start.

0:19:51.3 WB: So our next steps or your next steps would be to identify LMS sponsors that can answer these questions, can help you, guide through these maybe unknowns, maybe you're hoping for something to improve and find that alignment for your organizational needs, because as they're changing, like we talked about from 2020 to 2022 educational requirements have vastly changed.And so, also thinking about who are your current vendors, are you bringing in content from a third party vendor or regulatory or a content provider that is helping you keep compliance. There's so many different elements of what a vendor can mean. Does your LMS as you're shopping potentially align with that and will add ease to that experience.

0:21:05.2 WB: And then finally, we've created an ebook with seven tips of how to select an LMS.And you can download it and we're going to provide that information. And that's just another toolfor you and your toolbox as you're searching through this process of shopping for an LMS. And soplease check that out. It's an amazing resource, has a lot of amazing facts of also where we're at as acountry with learning management systems, depending, it doesn't depend on your market. So we'regoing to open up the floor. And if you have additional questions you want to shoot our way. Here'sour email it's So we'll cover some questions. I'm looking at... Can you also talkmore about the types of training learners can receive on the LMS? Fantastic question. So, as wehigh leveled learners can receive education and training from their hire as onboarding that's usuallypaperwork and getting them all set up, but in a clinical sense you have to have training done withina certain time period.0:22:41.1 WB: And we have the full gamut of following training that needs to be done. LMSs hashave the ability to train based off of job roles and requirements, the ability to make sure that they'reup to annual regulatory needs and LMS has the ability to provide additional training, as I mentionedif there's a fail out of training. And also we're looking for employee advancement. So, the ability toupscale an employee wants to stay wants to be involved wants to grow wants to change. LMS is agreat tool for navigating what is required for a job change. That's a great question.

0:23:42.0 WB: So types of training, specifically, would be online training courses in person training which now is happening more and more. And then we have those partnerships with third party vendors, as far as they can take courses through a different avenue, but still give some credit in the system. So that's important if you would like to have that third party vendor, a content vendor. And then there is also skills checklist, there's a wide variety of training types which is really great because there's so many multimodal learners that need need to be accounted for and so great question.

0:24:38.1 WB: Another question I'm seeing is, how would you decide between a hybrid LMS versus an out of the box. So that's a great question. It really depends on your organizational needs and what you're ultimately looking for as your output of what you can track and train and report on, that your output is that. So, out of the box LMSs are fantastic if you're doing just onboarding, here's one two courses. This is what I need them to know I need to be able to speak to it. Boom, that's it. Different industries require vastly different needs, as far as a hybrid could also be that your organization wants to be able to have more dynamic and unique content available, or unique dynamic aspects of an LMS. So thinking through that, is your LMS going to engage your employees beyond onboarding? Is that required and is going back to the compliance element. Do you need to be able to speak at any moment to the training that was provided to your employees, and what was the reaction to, if anything, was not received well?

0:26:31.0 WB: So there's the question of what kind of LMS do you really need. And one thing I'm seeing here is who should be the initial stakeholders in that conversation. If you're thinking okay we need a new system, we need a new LMS, who should be a part of that conversation, and it really should involve your, obviously your HR team, your compliance team, if you have a learning and development department. And also I would include your IT team because that's gonna be part of really building up the mapping and the integrations that you might need. So looking at the compliance team, the HR team and getting those people in the same table is a great start for whens hopping for an LMS, and just making sure you're looking at the right things, it's very common to see necessary teams, not being included in that initial conversation, and it can create some hardship.

0:27:53.2 WB: And so you can avoid that by having everyone in the right seat for that initial conversation. I'm just looking to see. I'm just wondering if we can sneak in one more question. I know we're at time almost. Okay, last question I'll take. So how does an LMS help a company stay in compliance? Fantastic question also. The capability for you to be able to retrieve employee training records instantaneously is critical. You have regulatory bodies come in and want to se whois been trained on what, all the stats and LMS is gonna give you that information and it is what it is.So you can report on it, you can pull it a manager can look at it. They can also use it as far as seeing who's done training that's been assigned. It's really your go to system of truth of what's been trained on, and what you can speak to. And that's really critical, especially for a lot of industries in this day and age so keeping in compliance, it gives you that ability to look at what risk is on the table. Does this training not make sense for majority of our team? We need to look at that. The ability to be able to report instantaneously on what's been done historically is critical.

0:30:03.5 WB: So I think that, if we have any, let me see if we have any other. How long is an implementation process? I would say that that is majority up to the organization's needs, how large the organization is, how many, if there's possible multiple facilities. It really depends on what you're looking for and then that is the conversation of how many people do you also have at the right seat in that initial conversation internally. And then bringing that to the LMS provider or as we're saying, LMS sponsor, and being able to say, "Okay we need to have X amount of people on to anew system in six months." There's I would say at least six months, or less depending on your size and industry. So that might be a great question to take specifically. It really is a different animal across the board.

0:31:33.7 WB: So I think that that'll be your last question. Thank you so much for joining this Learnsoft hosted webinar on how to shop for an LMS. If you have any additional questions, you can reach out to our email. And we also have that ebook which we widely encourage you to to download and partake in it has so much information. If there's any further questions, please reach out and thank you for your time.

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