If you’ve never implemented a Learning Management System (LMS) before then it’s never been a part of your budget before. However, with the expense of an LMS comes online courses and on-demand webinars that can become a part of your non-dues revenue strategy as well as new avenues to acquire sponsorship dollars. In no time your sponsors and/or learners can be covering your LMS costs and then some.
If you’re switching from one LMS to another, yes, moving to a new LMS can result in incurring new setup and migration costs, the payoff can certainly exceed the expense. If you’re moving because your current LMS is outdated, difficult to navigate, can’t integrate with your other systems, or for any number of other issues that your new solution will remedy, this can boost your engagement and revenue almost immediately. Plus, there is always the chance that your new LMS provider will work with you on some of those setup and migration costs.
Whether what you have now is a YouTube or Vimeo Channel or another LMS there is probably something going wrong, or at least something that can be improved upon. Be prepared to not only list off a number of items that aren’t working for you now, but how the new LMS (or LMSs) can improve X, Y, and Z. Being prepared with not only the negative but the positive of where you want to go can help make the decision to move forward much easier.
What if they don’t like it? How will they learn to use it? First off, no matter what you decide, someone is going to criticize. You will never make everyone happy! But, you can do your due diligence when LMS-shopping to see and use things from the learners’ perspective as well as contact references to ask about their learners’ feedback. The LMS you choose should be easy to use and navigate – meaning as long as the process of paying for a course and taking that course is simple for you and your team, it should be simple enough for your learners! And remember once the LMS has launched, you can create some “Getting Started” training webinars, reading material, or on-demand options to ease the users’ onboarding experience. Lastly, an LMS company that has a customer support team to field some of these questions will take the burden off of you and your organization, making it one less thing to worry about!
We all have a lot going on, not only as a singular employee, but also as a team, and as a whole organization. It’s easy for certain things to move up and down the priority ladder and depending on where priorities lie in your organization, implementing an LMS or moving to a new platform may not be a priority to those who make the final call.
Having an intuitive, easy-to-use, mobile-friendly LMS is a must. Your learners expect to be able to access courses and virtual events whenever they want, wherever they are. They have become accustomed to easy-to-navigate platforms like Facebook, Amazon, and YouTube. If you aren’t embracing online learning, or your platform is outdated, clunky, and only available on a desktop or laptop, you have already fallen behind and are no longer in the running as a leader in your industry.
Technology, digital engagement, and online learning has to be a priority for any organization wanting to stay relevant to their learners and remain at the forefront of their industry.
No matter the status of your LMS or online learning programming, you will always run into people who question and object the ideas you have or the decisions you make. Be inclusive of both the supporters and the objectors and be prepared to present the strategy and benefits of the changes you are hoping to implement. This will help garner support for the big undertaking that is the implementation of a new LMS system which in turn will help make your program a success.