Selecting an LMS: Feature Set

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Selecting an LMS: Feature Set

Shopping for an LMS can easily turn into what many experience when they visit Costco or Target. You write a checklist of essential items but leave the store with a bunch of other things and a huge bill.

It is important to choose an LMS based on your business goals and select features that fit the big picture.

Part of choosing an LMS, which is often forgotten, is eliminating systems that come with too many frills. As a result, the system will be cluttered and hard to manage even simple tasks. This makes the process less efficient.

And, the last thing you need is an inefficient LMS.

When you focus on so many ‘what if’ situations or the latest buzz words in the industry, you wind up with a bloated LMS and underutilized feature sets. But the catch is that you’ll be paying more for all the extras of the system even if you’re not using them.

Complicated feature sets are well-known for derailing business software roll-outs too. Even companies that do well with change have a hard time with adoption and user satisfaction.

What are the top feature sets every LMS should have?

Every business will have unique needs, but there are certain features that are universal. This is because they provide definable value, either in increased Return on Investment (ROI) or improved Key Performance Indicator (KPI).

These features enable an LMS to perform its essential functions for administrators, and encourage the highest adoption rate amongst an audience.

  • Reporting. Analytics are important for any training program in order to demonstrate how it has impacted your business goals.
  • Content Creation and Delivery. There is no LMS without content so it’s imperative to have a seamless system that can be scaled accordingly.
  • Skills/Certification Tracking. Certifications provide assurance that those extended enterprise groups are properly trained in your product. Besides the training aspect, certifications elevate an organization’s brand value and build an ecosystem of users.
  • Integrations. An LMS will never operate independently so having integration capabilities is crucial so it can link with systems such as a CRM or HRIS.
  • Personal, Automated Learning Paths. Automation makes your job easier while personalized learning supports career development.


The Selection Process

When selecting an LMS there are a few things that can be done in order to not be paralyzed by ‘choice overload.’

It’s easy to get distracted by the availability of ‘extra’ features that will only add unnecessary cost and complexity. Try to focus on the subset of LMS functionality that is essential for your business.

The first thing you’ll need to do is create a high-level features/requirement list created by your LMS team. Think about your company goals as well as some future projects coming up. These use case scenarios will set the stage for what features will be essential for your business goals and needs.

Some questions to think about include,

  1. What tasks am I going to perform with the new LMS?
  2. If there is an existing LMS before, what features weren’t utilized and why not?
  3. How will I show that my goals have been achieved?
  4. What processes do I need to set up?

Each member of your LMS selection team should come up with several use cases that are pertinent to their job. Then it becomes easier to map back specific feature sets that are ‘must haves’ and then rank the ‘nice to haves’ afterward.

Using this strategy, you clearly define a set of features and functions that your LMS absolutely needs to have in order to be a good return on investment.

The feature sets of an LMS are very important which is why it should be high on your priority list. Creating use case scenarios is the best way to narrow down only the features your business will need and use. Remember that the longer the feature list the more difficult it will be to check if everything is really working; you may end up having all boxes checked and a Learning Management System that doesn’t really suit you.

ShareKnowledge is a SharePoint-based Learning Management System that is integrated into all aspects of your business. Fully adaptable and scalable, ShareKnowledge boasts a list of impressive features that continue to grow. You get to choose and deploy enhanced functionality web components for your specific needs. To learn more, please fill out the form.

Key Consideration:
Technology, Selection

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