Learning is a natural building block for every business.

Members of staff need to learn how to carry out tasks, how to express the corporate brand, how to stay compliant, be safe, and follow guidelines. But while training is important, it can often end up being time-consuming and eating up resources – which is why many businesses are now choosing to invest in electronic learning management systems.

The cost savings of digital learning management

With the help of a Learning Management System (LMS), it’s possible for a business to set up a training programme that saves a huge number of man-hours compared to traditional training. It only needs a one-off investment, and possibly an annual review.

Planning and setting up a training platform can however be a daunting task. Where do you start? In this article we’ll take a look at some of the basics you should consider when planning to take your training programmes into the digital world.

1. Know the WHY

Setting up a training programme is often a fast-track to productivity. It enables everyone to learn how to work in the best way possible. But it is also a great opportunity to re-visit your current processes and evaluate whether they are in fact the most productive way of doing things. By taking the time to question why you operate the way you do, you may discover alternative processes that can be faster, better, or more profitable.

2. Know the WHO

Any LMS journey starts and ends with the user, which means the user should sit firmly at the centre of your planning. Who are the different training users? What methods of learning resonates the most with them? How much time can they devote to the training in one sitting? How computer literate are they? Make sure you understand the user fully before launching a learning management initiative.

3. Get the team prepared

By getting the right people involved from the start, you can make sure the business maintains the right user focus.

  • Select a champion
    The eLearning Industry guidelines suggest that you select a champion early on in the project, to ensure you have someone who can act as an advocate and voice the needs and benefits of an LMS – to the management level as well as to users.
  • Set up a stakeholder team
    Set up a small team of people who will be engaged in the project. You should aim to include representatives from every business area impacted by the training, as well as IT and Human Resources. This team will be instrumental in helping to define programme requirements and in selecting the right software vendor for creating the LMS.

4. Create use cases

Learning management can easily become a huge, abstract thing. But rather than trying to approach the project as a massive whole, look at turning the training requirements into use cases. What are the steps the user needs to go through, and how can they achieve the desired outcomes? How will the user interact with the LMS? How will their progress be measured? These various scenarios will be incredibly useful in understanding what the system needs to achieve on a user-specific level.

5. Create a requirement list

Once you have defined the objectives, the user, the project management and the use cases, you will be able to start drafting a requirement list. With the help of the information you have built up, you will have enough to describe the key requirements and your expected result. This should become a shared baseline document for stakeholders to sign off.

6. Find the right vendor

There are a multitude of vendors available for creating LMS software, and your choice will no doubt be dictated by the complexity of your training requirements – both current and future. Don’t rush your decision in finding the best partner for you, but instead ensure you shortlist companies that genuinely understand the outcomes you want to achieve and who can help you with guidance and expertise on how to achieve those outcomes in the most cost-effective way.

Training your way

Training can, and should be, responsive. There is no right or wrong when it comes to creating an LMS that works for your specific organisation. Allow new ideas to come through, both from inside the business and from your software partner, and explore new ways of using technology to deliver training that is bespoke, user-friendly and results-driven.