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The evolution of learning management systems

Learning management systems can increase the efficiency of training and development programs.

Learning management systems provide organizations with the platform and tools needed to fuel eLearning initiatives. Not only can this software application be used to facilitate the documentation, tracking and reporting processes of education and training, but it is also a vital component of effectively delivering the information and materials.

LMS aren't just used for academic institutions. Companies across all industries are realizing the benefits of offering ongoing training and development programs to employees. Furthermore, many businesses are taking an interest in how innovative digital technologies can be leveraged to make the implementation of such programs more effective, affordable, flexible and convenient.

Research and Markets recently revealed that the expected global market for learning management systems will reach about $10 billion in the next four years, with a compound annual growth rate of approximately 20.8 percent. However, despite the growth, studies have also shown that a good portion of organizations are not entirely satisfied with their current LMS.

eLearning technology and trends
A survey conducted by the Brandon Hall Group found that although 85 percent of corporations use an LMS, the majority feel that their current system would be inadequate in handling and supporting its future needs. Another factor that contributed to the dissatisfaction of many of those surveyed was the lack of reporting and analytics functionalities, with more than 54 percent of respondents agreeing their current solution could improve in this area.

"LMS solutions can significantly enhance eLearning initiatives."

"This indicates that companies are simply not looking far enough ahead when making their technology selection," the research report explained. "Instead, they are focusing exclusively on solving today's challenges."

The Brandon Hall Group also found that one of the top reasons companies switch LMS is because they believe a cloud-based system will be more effective. This is the first time this issue was ranked among the top 10 biggest concerns.

These findings highlight the importance of deploying an eLearning solution that is adaptive to emerging market trends and that provides easy access and use of essential data. But what trends have industry experts indicated the market will see more of? One of the most prominent is the increasing number of organizations that have and will continue to transition toward mobile learning technologies.

An abundance of research has demonstrated a shift in the way people today learn. Attention spans are shortening and digital devices are accumulating. Therefore, companies are encouraged to use microlearning and gamification techniques in professional training and development programs. These types of training deliver bite-sized chunks of content in ways that are engaging, convenient and accessible.

Another trend that has influenced the market is HTML5, which some argue will be the foundation of eLearning content development. Because this Web-language is compatible with all devices, browsers and operating systems, it is an ideal solution for LMS.

LMS increase the efficiency of training and development programs.
LMS increase the efficiency of training and development programs.

Innovative learning management solutions
Training and development programs can be supplemented with Web assessments, online portals, video modules and digital content that expand employees' skill sets and makes eLearning simple and efficient. These technologies can also be used to gain increased insight into the key metrics that allow companies to identify and correct weaknesses throughout the organization, thus improving their bottom line.

To maintain an edge over competitors, corporate leaders must stay in-the-know on evolving technologies and processes that will enhance both internal and external business operations. And, considering research has shown that a major concern for companies today is finding an eLearning solution that can adequately handle both current and future needs, it is also important that business executives are selective in choosing the right LMS vendor.

Working with a third-party firm that specializes in both digital content management systems and mobile learning can give companies the advanced expertise and support needed to significantly enhance their corporate learning strategy.

Mobile Readiness
Corporate Learning & Performance
Digital Content Development

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