There are over 700 solutions in the LMS landscape, each offering something different. Finding the best LMS for your unique business needs may not be an easy task.Here are some key features an LMS should include:

Administrative Task Automation – This feature allows administrators to automate recurring tasks, such as user grouping, group enrollment, user deactivation, and new user population.

Certification and retraining – an LMS should allow you to track and manage certification and retraining activities (e.g. managing recurring training / continuing education / compliance programs)

Social Learning – As mentioned before, your LMS should support informal training activities. Your LMS should include features that encourage collaboration, peer mentoring, and knowledge retention.

Mobility – learning content must be accessed anytime, anywhere, regardless of which device is used. Learning management systems must allow content to be accessed on mobile devices to enable learning at the point of need .

Course And Catalog Management

fundamentally, a learning management system is the central system that holds all courses and learning content. Administrators can easily create and manage courses and course catalogs for personalized delivery to each user.

Content integration and interoperability – Learning management systems must support packaged learning content in accordance with interoperable standards such as SCORM, AICC, and xAPI (formerly known as Tin Can).

Content marketplace – not all learning content is produced in-house. Allow your students to access “off-the-shelf” courses which are created by different global providers like OpenSesame and LinkedIn Learning

Notifications – Notifications allow students to stay up-to-date with required trainings. LMS systems must support real-time, automated notifications telling students their progress, course completion, certifications, achievements, feedback, and more.

White label and personalization – Immerse your students in a completely unique platform and maintain brand consistency within your e-learning experience.

Gamification – increase the engagement of your students by allowing them to earn points, badges, prizes, etc. in all their learning activities.

Integrations – keep your organization’s data in sync with an LMS

Ecommerce – integrate your ecommerce platform like Shopify, and/or payment gateways like PayPal and Stripe.

ILT classroom – instructor-led – the purpose of a training management system is not to replace instructor-led learning with online learning – on the contrary, what an LMS should do is support learning in the moment what happens (eg via a mix of formal and informal learning methods) and provide a way of delivering, tracking and measuring learning activities. As such, your LMS should support classroom-based and in-person learning initiatives (eg, class schedule management, performance and attendance monitoring, etc.).

Reporting – one of the most important features of an  should include the ability to track the impact your training programs are having on your business. Your  should allow you to get information and data through custom reports and dashboards that provide metrics on learning activities.

LMS pricing models

License – Instead of paying per user, this LMS pricing plan involves a license fee. Usually an annual fee that must be renewed annually, or an initial fee that grants unlimited access for life. However, as technology advances, you will probably have to purchase replacement software in the near future.

Subscription – A subscription fee usually gives you access to all of the LMS features, or is based on a pay-per-user model. This pricing model involves a fee for each user or active user. In some cases, the LMS provider offers different pricing tiers. For example, the rate covers up to 25 active students. This is a great solution for smaller organizations that want to minimize online training costs, but still want to be able to scale the Learning Management System as their business expands.

Freemium – These  platforms are free for basic features, but a fee is charged for more advanced features such as plugins or upgrades. For example, a more comprehensive online learning assessment engine or advanced reporting.

Follow up with an LMS

Data-driven businesses understand that a key advantage of any software is that it provides metrics, allowing productivity and progress to be measured, as well as insights into performance. Online training software is no exception.

An LMS can help you track various learning activities. Formal learning metrics and reports include:

  • course completion
  • Course Enrollment Dates
  • Last login per user
  • Total time spent on courses and learning plans
  • Active courses
  • Exam and evaluation results
  • Instructor-led classroom course sessions
  • E-commerce transaction data
  • Learning plan reports
  • User activity reports
  • Audit trail reports
  • Gamification reports (eg badges and contests)
  • Certification reports
  • Reports of external training activities
  • Customized reports based on unique learning needs