What Not to Do When Buying a Learning Management System

What Not to Do When Buying a Learning Management System

In our last LMS blog post entitled What to Do When Selecting an LMS we attempted to give you the prospective buyer, a helpful guide on factors that DO need to be addressed before and during LMS purchase and design.  In this edition of our blog, we are going to continue the good information flow by recommending elements that you DO NOT want to do before and during LMS selection.  Many times negatives can be more compelling than positive so, Read on!

  1. Don’t Assume Anything
    First and foremost, do not allow figures on implementation time and price throw or scare you off.  Quality LMS that are designed to suite your specific company, take time to build properly.  Do not go into this with a “faster is better” attitude, or you may end up replacing your already under performing LMS with something equally as bad or worse.  Remember that you will see a wide range in pricing.  Do not make the mistake in assuming that all LMS are of equal quality and the cheapest one is the best way to go.  If you insist on shopping the bargain bin for an LMS, you are more than likely going to receive a bargain basement product.

  2. Don’t Forget The Experts
    It is important to remember that although it takes IT people on your vendor’s team to design and build your LMS, you do not need to involve your IT people in this process.  Buying and building your company’s LMS is not an IT system purchase.  Unless there is very specific input needed from IT, it is recommended by Upside Learning in their white paper LMS Switching Guide, that you do not involve them at all.

  3. Don’t Rush Into Things
    We have all seen it happen and it most likely has happened to us at least once.  We get dazzled by a well put together sales presentation given by a talented sales team and rush to buy the product immediately after.  This is a very big “Do Not Do!”  Take the time to research their claims and promises.  Involve the people on your evaluation team spoken of in our companion blog What to Do When Selecting an LMS  Ask the vendor for further sales demos that cater to your more informed questions, upon completion of research.  Most importantly, do not buy the first LMS that you see.  Take the time and effort to shop around and get to know different providers.  There is a very helpful website that you can refer to when getting started – its Capterra’s Top Learning Management Systems Software Solutions.

  4. Don’t Leave It Up To Someone Else
    While we harbor no doubt that your evaluation team is a collection of top employees from diverse professions within your company, there are reasonable limits upon which you should depend on their conclusions as a second or third party participant.  Stay involved in the research and development process and do not delegate the task to someone on the team who then reports their findings to you.  This is a crucial aspect in acquiring an LMS.  Being that you are responsible for bringing in an effective, quality product, you probably don’t want to leave the very important details to someone who may only approach the task from a limited perspective.

  5. Don’t Settle For An Inferior LMS
    Do not settle on a LMS that does not have the capacity to host interactive online training programs.  Even if your company does not at the present operate within the digital realm when it comes to training or onboarding, such eLearning activities are growing in popularity.  Offering superior quality training outcomes through employee engagement, knowledge retention and performance improvement are just some of elearning’s benefits.  Couple that with the ability to host these courses on platforms ranging from smart phones and tablets to desk and laptop computers, you are looking at an online product that offers convenience, flexibility and learning technologies that traditional classroom style learning struggles to rival.

  6. Don’t Forget About The Future
    Do not deprive your company of the opportunity of being on the leading edge of training technology.  Avoid the awkwardness of two years down the road having to tell your boss “No.” when they decide they want to get into online learning.  At the very least you appear unprepared and at worst the company has to go back and purchase another LMS that can host the necessary practices.  A costly error indeed.

As can be seen, there are many details to be aware of when you are prospecting for and buying an LMS. Although the process is fraught with obstacles and pitfalls, given the proper directions, you to can provide your company with a quality platform on which to host all of the programs and courses that your employees could ever desire.

For more information, please read our blog post “Three Questions to Ask Before Building E-learning.”

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