LMS – from an organisational perspective

Paul Redman – Zurich

Paul addressed some of the functions and issues about operating a LMS – which he broke down into 4 levels – from the simplicity of 1) just storing results and reporting on results; to 2)storing employees details, creating & launching content; to 3) email, discussion forums, competency roles, fully flexible reporting; to 4) career succession plans, RTO & AVETMISS systems, & integrated performance management.
hmmmm – I wonder how many organisations use their systems beyond level 1 or 2?

Paul also shared his process for selecting a LMS:

  1. What are my business needs?
    Research your own company – where it’s at from a strategic perspective. What the organisation currently does from a practise admin approach – reporting and results. Also the relationship with competency standards – some systems are more appropriate to this sort of learning approach.
    How much e-Learning do you already have – does it need to be embedded into the LMS.
    How many people will access the system?
    Understand what we want – understand the organisation’s culture.
  2. Go shopping for a solution!
    This is a buying exercise – search, try them out, talk to people, current software partners and developers.
    Build a checklist for critical information: records storage, track participants, run courses, reports…just for starters!
    Tip: don’t share you checklist with your vendors – they always say yes to everything!
    Determine the current average salary wage p/hr p/day in your org….what is the likely cost of current processes – or how much will it cost if you do not use a LM – how much will it cost if you do?
    Get the vendors to demonstrate at YOUR place – not theirs – see if it really does work on your premises or remotely!
    Make sure pricing includes ongoing support, maintenance & upgrades! Long term ongoing pricing was one of the most important decision issues!
  3. Refine the search with all stakeholders
    Select the best 2 – 4 candidates.
    Involve your IT department during these processes!
    Future ability – is it scalable?
    Beware of the brick wall – behind it is a lot more money than you can dream of!
    Build a review panel with key stakeholders in the organisation eg. HR, IT, Security
    Schedule presentations & demos

Critical points from the audience on their decisions on selecting a LMS:

  • User friendly – from the learners’ perspective
  • Interoperability – will it, can it? SCORM compliance is still an issue – even though the vendors tell you it’s compliant! TEST it!!

Take home message: Remember it’s your business and your money!