When the Learning Management System (LMS) made its debut in early 2000, it was an instant success. It was a superior technological achievement in the Learning & Development (L&D) industry, making learning convenient, comfortable and easily accessible. This digital innovation was expected to revolutionize the learning landscape. And that it did!
The LMS did amazingly well for a decade or so. However, in an age of perennial technological evolutions, increasing distributed workforces and collaborative learning, the LMS has been letting its users down on multiple fronts, for a few years now. Limitations of LMS have become conspicuous and businesses, the L&D industry and learners haven’t been shy about expressing dissatisfaction. What makes the situation worse is that the developers and vendors haven’t been able to address the consumers concerns.
In our opinion, the most glaring faults of LMS are lack of engagement and adaptive learning which limits the scope of elearning. Some other major challenges echoed by LMS users are:
- Learners experience a sheer lack of engagement due to monotonous and tedious content
- Learners growth is restricted as LMS continues to be just an enabler of learning and not a facilitator, much to the frustration of business owners
- Data reporting and management is a nightmare requiring most managers to use excel to report data, even after spending a fortune on acquiring this technology
- It drives the user or in other words lacks personalization
- There are no effective feedback loops making it practically immune to changes
These flaws have made the traditional LMS antediluvian, making the introduction of an alternative almost imperative. What the elearning industry needs is a learning ecosystem that creates rapt learners, is adaptive and offers versatile authoring tools. An enhanced LMS or eLMS offers just that. This technological evolution will sustain a world of learning instead of stiffening it. It will support dynamic content and offer a cogent platform that allows for social expression through various communication platforms, gamification elements and fosters an online experts clan.
eLMS offers a futuristic learning environment that presents a symbiosis of developing trends in L&D, Web2.0 and online user behavior. For instance, gamification elements like achievement badges, likes, and shoutouts provide a level of social appreciation much like that on Facebook. Making learning a klout worthy aspect of an individual’s online presence is downright genius, playing into the psyche of today’s sharing driven clientele.
Engagement through social interactions is another big advantage offered through eLMS. Participants would be able to engage in discussion threads on the topic, thereby allowing for learning from experience and sharing information. At SpringPeople, for example, during online sessions, participants are able to interact with each other and offer valuable insight. We are ISO 9001:2008 & ISO 10002:2014 certified which means we aim to enhance customer satisfaction through the effective application of the system. Building on the same, Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) will be able to facilitate microlearning by way of follow-ups in discussion threads in a casual learning environment. It will be possible to document these threads and make them available for reference in the future, a functionality that was deeply lacking in the traditional LMS.
The L&D industry stands to gain as progressive learning now becomes achievable. Open communication elements allow for real time information to be acquired. Internal communication is further strengthened through a direct, immediate feedback system allowing for improvements and modifications to the learning content and making for more effective learning.
Besides the above remarkable evolutions, eLMS will be a real treat in other aspects as well.
- Easy, real time content development can be developed using HTML5. Trainers will be able to put together engaging web content using rich multimedia as they please.
- Blended Learning will be possible with complete synchronicity of various modules of learning â€“ classroom sessions, online, real time and so on.
- Advanced Reporting Features will include not just detailed data reports but offering dynamic progress reports as learners go through the courses.
- Platform flexibility and interoperability will be smoother
The eLMS, though still maturing, is surely gaining momentum. The way we see it eLMS has tremendous potential to impact behavioral change. With eLMS dedicated to offering interoperability, personalization and collaboration within a flawless architectural design, the change is bound to become tangible and impact real business success.