The need for companies and organizations to train new employees has been recognized for years and today ongoing training and workplace learning for current employees has become paramount to success. In fact, in 2018, companies spent almost $100 billion on training their workforce. Learning and Development (L&D) managers are newcomers to the HR department, yet despite their newbie status, managers are increasing talent development budgets.
With all this emphasis on workplace learning, the question arises: How do companies and organizations make learning more effective? Take a look at three key areas below that can determine success in talent development and assess how well your learning management system (LMS) performs and supports your organization’s training efforts.
Open Source vs. Closed Source Technology
Within the eLearning market, there are both open-source and closed-source LMS solutions. Open-source products are relatively low-cost or free, the original code is given freely, and they may be modified and redistributed at pleasure. Closed-source products are proprietary software. The creators do not share the code and the ability to customize the functionality and design of the LMS is often limited.
An open-source LMS is the best choice for future-proofing and personalizing workplace learning. It allows for more customization, giving you the opportunity to create content that is extremely job specific. There is no more tweaking a proprietary LMS and just “making do” with what you’ve purchased. Instead, you can have exactly what you want and need in order for your eLearning platform to meet your specific learning requirements.
Open source also gives you the most up-to-date and secure system possible. Behind the scenes, there is a community of developers who are contributing, correcting, and refining code. They give this code back to the community, often in the form of plugins. Plugins offer you flexibility in your learning design. Choose only the ones you need for your particular industry or to meet your goals.
Another benefit to an open-source LMS is that you always own your data. If you choose to move to another hosting service or different platform, you can bring all your LMS code with you and set it right back up. It belongs to your company and you are in charge.
All LMS platforms need service and technical support. The success of any online training is directly dependent upon the services the LMS provides. Employees can’t learn if the system is always down or key components are missing. As mentioned with closed-source solutions, there is often proprietary support included, which typically isn’t very effective or timely. However, with an open-source solution, you have the flexibility to employ the support team of your choosing, allowing you to leverage the right level of support to meet your specific needs. There are dozens of features offered by different LMS companies. Look for the following:
- Reports and analytics: Get the statistics that show you who is completing the coursework and if they are on track. Effective learning happens with accountability.
- Social learning support: This allows the learners to interact with and learn from each other using forums and other methods.
- Intuitive user interface: The LMS should be easy to navigate and understand at first glance.
- eLearning assessment tools: These tools help L&D managers determine if there are any gaps in the learning that require intervention.
- Multiple platforms: The content should be viewable and usable from multiple devices such as through a mobile application.
- Customer Support: Each LMS offers its own level of support and the option to pay for extra support. Make sure you get all the help you need.
Integrating different learning systems can be a headache for L&D managers. The benefits of successful integration extend to the employee and the HR department alike, and include the following:
- Deliver more personalized online training. Integration with HR software provides enhanced analytics for a comprehensive overview of each employee. Use this information to design training for problem areas.
- Identify trends to create new goals. Spot patterns and trends that show areas of weakness in your online training. Re-evaluate coursework to create better training content.
- Find the top talent. Track progress in a way that allows you to recognize the best employees and provide them with the resources they need to excel.
- Improve resource allocation. With LMS integration you need fewer employees dedicated to workplace learning to get the job done. Let your HR department concentrate on other areas while your LMS performs the training.
As companies and organizations move into the future, workplace learning will likely be tied even more closely to a business’ measurable outcomes. Keeping current with the increasingly fast pace of the digital world will require continuous training and education. If a company wishes to stay relevant, this area of HR will need more investment.
In addition, employees who participate in workplace learning experience improved performance and increased job satisfaction. In fact, 68% of employees prefer to learn at the office. As every new hire is an expenditure of time and money, employee retention is one of the primary benefits of a strong training program.
The global online learning market is expected to make exponential growth in the coming years. In fact, “83% of institutions with online offerings expect their online enrollments to increase over the coming year.” (Online Learning Consortium) As more companies realize the flexibility of eLearning, it will become the preferred way to train and educate employees. Move now to ensure that your company or organization is ready with the right LMS to achieve effective workplace learning.
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Discover more secrets to effective workplace learning in our 4 Workplace Learning Trends All Talent Developers Should Be Aware Of Whitepaper. Explore our solutions for corporate training or click below to request an individual demonstration to discover how to effectively educate and support your team with digital workplace learning.