Sometimes we’re asked, “What exactly is a Learning Management System (LMS)”? In this blog post, we will delve into that very question to provide you insights into what it is, how it's developed, and what the benefits of having an LMS are.
If you are an organization or a business enterprise looking to streamline training costs, track employee productivity, or deal with training inconsistencies this post may be useful for you.
What is a Learning Management System?
Learning Management Systems (LMS) are essential if you are a geographically diverse business enterprise or simply looking to make your business more efficient in terms of how you train and evaluate your employees.
A Learning Management System is utilized to track progress related to online training initiatives by organizations or businesses. Learning modules are uploaded to the Learning Management System, the benefits of which are easy access for remote learners which thereby addresses the inefficiency of traditional training methods and costs associated with having in-person training personnel.
Learning Management Systems are the indispensable training tool that organizations and businesses use to train, track progress, and productivity in order to discover new ideas, methods or policies translate into efficiency for said organizations or businesses.
Categories of LMS
Various Learning Management Systems that can be found online are usually broken down into two different categories. The first is the “commercial” category, which is usually SaaS or “fee for service” LMS platforms that cater to SMEs.
These LMS platforms usually have customizable features that the client can choose to suit the needs of their organization or business. The only downside to these online Learning Management Systems is that they are limited to the features that they offer and may not address the learning management issues an SME or large enterprise may have.
The second example is the “proprietary” online Learning Management System. They are developed, and the sole property of the organization or the business that initiated the development of the learning management software.
Hallmarks of proprietary Learning Management Systems include the ability to customize or modify their learning management system at their own discretion and the ability to tailor it to individuals, professions, or industries.
In order to further delve into Learning Management Systems, we are going to focus on the “proprietary” model of a learning management system. Most organizations and businesses today have their own internal LMS platform to meet their own needs.
The development process of internal learning management software while not as immediate as an “off-the-shelf” LMS will address the needs of the client in the long run without the disadvantages of having a fee-for-service platform which may lead to higher costs in the long run.
The benefit of organizations and businesses that develop their own proprietary learning management software is that it eventually pays itself off.
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If an organization or business intends to develop its own LMS, several factors must be taken into consideration. The most important of these is to focus on their functional requirements.
Particular attention must also be paid to the training requirement and goals in order to develop the right LMS solution free of regrets. Below is a list of some of the parameters to be aware of when developing an LMS platform or LMS software:
- Data-driven results to assess and understand the ROI of your LMS and assist you in evaluating your employees in order to review specific topics or to provide them more information related to a subject
- Testing and assessment tools that are important to your Learning and Development trainers, in order to gauge the knowledge, retention, and performance of the employees in order to improve or modify your training program.
- Customized options that make your LMS software more attractive to your employees such as gaming elements, online training certificates, multi-language options, role assignments, content delivery options, and dashboards.
- A cloud-based learning management system, which doesn’t have to be installed, can be deployed quickly and take into consideration the per capita costs of learners based on their specific training requirements.
Technology stack for LMS
Based on the experience in developing LMS, It can be safely considered that the choice of technology stack chosen should primarily follow the functional needs of your solution. Basically, your Learning Management System can be developed by using various programming languages. But the biggest question with current technologies is “are they able to provide features that will satisfy your end-user”?
From our development practices and perspective, we’ve adopted the Cloud-Native approach and have strongly recommended it to our clients to choose services provided by AWS. It is convenient, secure, and time-efficient for the entirety of the development process.
In the context of streaming video for LMS, an unconditional must-have feature, AWS services perform the required tasks flawlessly:
- Amazon S3 - It stores all video files. This is an object storage service that offers industry-leading scalability, data availability, security, and performance.
- CloudFront - A Content Delivery Network (CDN) that securely delivers video files to the end-user.
- Elastic Transcoder - It converts video files into the streaming video in different formats depending on the Internet speed on the device.
To implement streaming videos into the LMS, we have utilized HTTP Live Streaming (HLS) technology, more information on which can be found in our previous post "How to implement HLS into your application?".
As shown, Learning Management Systems are great solutions for companies and enterprises that are striving to improve their employees’ competences. An LMS that is properly developed could address even the most detailed needs of your team whether its size is 50, 500, or even 5000 employees.
Our team has extensive experience in developing Educational Software Solutions. Our expertise has allowed us to develop market-leading products and thereby provide cost-effective solutions for your business in the long run.