Train employees well with these LMS features
What makes a good Learning Management System (LMS)? With so many options available today, it’s easy to get overwhelmed with the search for the best LMS. Every organization and course has different needs, but there are a few features that are always useful in a good LMS platform. What are the most important qualities to look for?
Essential features of an LMS platform for employee training
1. Simple, clear user interface
Arguably the most important feature of any learning management system is a simple, functional user interface (UI). The success of any digital learning platform depends on how well it engages students. If the user interface is clunky, difficult to navigate, or just plain confusing, it will hinder adoption and enthusiasm. A good LMS should have an easy-to-use interface, preferably with accessibility features . Text and fonts used throughout the site should be clear and easy to read, even for those with vision problems. Features like descriptive audio are also useful for improving website accessibility.
There should be a clear layout on the platform. For example, users should be able to easily find their account settings and active courses. The same applies to the administrative and educational side of the LMS. Courses should be easy to set up and key systems such as grading, progress tracking and class management should run smoothly.
2. Simplified course management
The main purpose of any LMS is to provide a hub for creating and running courses. Course management should be well optimized and easy to navigate. If an instructor has to spend ten minutes scrolling through nested menus just to add a new student to their course, the system needs more work.
Basic tasks such as creating assignments, recording grades, and viewing student lists should run smoothly in the LMS. The overall performance of the teacher side of the user interface should make the instructor’s job easier, not harder. It is especially helpful if the developer has tutorial guides and videos available to help instructors get started.
3. Monitoring and analysis
No LMS platform is complete without powerful monitoring and analytics tools. These features allow instructors to track student progress and identify ways to improve courses. Evaluation tools can include reflection from course designers or analysis of course-wide performance metrics . Whatever evaluation method is used, a good LMS should have features that make it easy to evaluate the course, both during and after the course.
For example, participants in an entry program may have a diagnostic test to complete on the first day of training. The LMS may have a test analytics feature that allows instructors to see the most frequently missed questions on a diagnostic test. This feature identifies topics that require the most attention during registration and training.
4. Options for automating tasks
Automation is a big help for instructors, especially when they run courses with dozens of students enrolled. The best LMS platforms have built-in capabilities for automating tasks that simplify course management and reduce instructor workload. This is often done using AI and machine learning tools. For example, in a large class, it may take a long time for instructors to notice that a student is falling behind. Machine learning algorithms can autonomously recognize fluctuations in performance that indicate a student needs help.
Artificial intelligence and machine learning can also be used to automate the analysis of course data and generate valuable insights for instructors in minutes. Even automating everyday tasks is useful. For example, instructors should be able to set up learning paths that automatically place a student in the next course once they complete the required course. Another must is automatic grading of simple tests and quizzes.
5. In compliance with privacy and security regulations
Software regulations are essential to ensure that applications respect everyone’s privacy and do not compromise online security. A reputable LMS will comply with relevant privacy and security regulations such as GDPR in Europe or IS0 27001 standards . An LMS developer should be able to provide documentation that proves they have a certain certification or are verified in accordance with a certain regulation.
In addition to regulations and standards, LMS platforms should offer users some level of privacy and security options. For example, if a developer collects cookies or other data, students should be able to request that their data be shared only with their instructors or employers.
6. Gamification features
Gamification has steadily gained popularity in schools and corporate environments over the past few years. Borrowing features from video games and using them in education has proven to be extremely effective in engaging students and increasing enthusiasm. Today’s top LMS platforms will include gamification features – or the ability to integrate with popular gamification platforms.
Gamification uses game mechanics features such as experience points and achievements to motivate students to learn. Interactivity is a key element of gamification. For example, course participants can see a leaderboard showing the participants who have completed the most training modules in the past month. Experience points and progress indicators keep students motivated to earn achievements and rewards.
7. Easy integration with other applications
Finally, any good LMS should be able to work well with other applications, especially those commonly used in education. A wide variety of well-functioning application integrations shows that the LMS developer has taken the time to understand the needs of instructors. In addition to supporting related applications, LMS platforms should offer support for many different file formats that students and instructors may want to use, such as Word documents, slide shows, spreadsheets, PDFs, and more. Seamless integration for different file formats simplifies the process for instructors and students to upload supplemental materials during the course.
Choosing the perfect learning management system
There are many options for learning management systems on the market today, so it’s important to know what to look for when choosing the right one. The best LMS platforms available today are accessible and easy to use for both instructors and students, with features that simplify and enhance learning.
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Editor’s note: Check out our directory to find, select and compare the eLearning industry’s best LMS software.