Training & Learning

6 Long-Term Benefits of LMS Software

If you’ve only dabbled in employee training, a learning management system is the tool you need to take your programs to the next level. LMS software lets you easily upload, manage, and distribute online training programs. Whether you’re a company of five or five thousand, an LMS can help you standardize and formalize your training programs.

The benefits of LMSs go beyond easier course management. A well-chosen LMS (we've got an RFP template that can help with that) coupled with a robust L&D strategy can have rippling effects not just on your training programs but also on your entire company, as we’ll see below.

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1. A consolidated approach to training

LMS software benefits learning coaches by making it easier for them to create courses and disseminate information. Even if your company is too small to support a separate L&D department, an LMS can consolidate your training programs, saving time and money across the company.

Without an LMS, there is no standardized way to organize or distribute training courses. Instead, most companies construct a piecemeal system, where each department creates its courses independently. There’s no way to ensure that everyone receives the same information or to standardize processes across departments.

With every department operating differently, the company may be spending money on multiple training tools, which can quickly add up. The learning experience might also be fragmented or disjointed because of the piecemeal approach.

Gathering your learning programs under a single LMS can increase cost-effectiveness, unify the learner experience, and reduce duplicate training efforts. When employees need a specific type of training, they’ll know exactly where to find it.

Take note that consolidating your learning programs doesn’t mean you have to centralize all your training efforts strictly within the L&D team. Some learning management platforms, like those that support Collaborative Learning, make it possible to run decentralized training programs while still maintaining a level of internal consistency with your training tools and guidelines.

2. Tangible ROI on training programs

One of the significant problems fledgling L&D programs face is getting the C-suite buy-in needed to grow. An LMS collects the data you need to prove your training program’s ROI.

It can be challenging to prove training ROI when all you have is qualitative data and anecdotal evidence of your program’s impact. Unfortunately, that’s all that most in-person training programs can offer. Without an overarching system for collecting analytics on training and employee behavior, most learning managers struggle to prove that their training is making any difference at all.

All LMS software offers some level of analytical data that you can use to bolster your arguments for bigger training budgets. With a basic LMS, you can measure course completion rates, which you can tie to performance changes. A more advanced LMS benefits you with even juicier data, like time to complete, student satisfaction rates, and feedback opportunities. A select few even integrate with other software, like your CRM tool, so that you can prove a real-time correlation between training programs and increased sales prowess.

3. Better employee satisfaction and retention

An LMS can help you build more robust L&D programs that attract and retain top talent in your industry.

Employees are increasingly willing to leave jobs for greener pastures. The Work Institute found that nearly 1 in 4 workers considers leaving their position at any given time. This large scale employee turnover costs companies a collective $600 billion a year in lost productivity and replacement costs.

Those numbers are scary, but there is a simple way that companies can combat employee attrition: by providing ample opportunities for learning and development. The number one reason employees reported changing jobs was for more career-development opportunities. Robust L&D programs have a proven link to employee retention. LinkedIn Learning found that 94% of employees would stay with a company longer if they felt the employer was invested in their career.

An LMS can help you build these more robust learning programs for employees. You can create learning paths that employees can use to upskill themselves and advance their careers.

4. A better onboarding experience

Use an LMS to standardize and strengthen your employee onboarding process for happier, better-prepared employees.

The stakes are high: Onboarding is your one opportunity to make a great first impression and start the employer-employee relationship off on the right foot. Employees who experienced comprehensive, structured onboarding are 58% more likely to still be working at the same organization three years later. Conversely, 10% of employees have left a company as a result of a poor onboarding experience.

An LMS can be your foundation for a thoughtful and standardized onboarding experience. With an LMS, you can create courses that provide employees with all the information they need to quickly and efficiently ramp up into their roles without confusion. You can use online training in place of, or alongside online training, to foster a more organized and calm first week of work and a better overall attitude.

5. Preservation of valuable institutional knowledge

An LMS can help you create a record of valuable institutional knowledge, which will save your company money by helping you avoid lost productivity.

Institutional knowledge consists of all the undocumented information that exists inside employees’ heads. Specific client preferences, minor accounting practices, and usage of legacy tools are examples of the kind of knowledge that’s vulnerable to being lost by employee turnover. It may seem trivial, but all of these smaller pieces of information add to a significant productivity loss. According to a study by Panopto, new employees spend 200 hours, on average, chasing down lost data. That’s a lot of time that could be saved by proactively preserving information ahead of time.

Getting that information out of employees’ heads and into a communally shared resource is one of the top benefits of an LMS. An LMS that facilitates Collaborative Learning is even more effective because employees can create their own courses to document their processes and unique contextual knowledge.

6. Economical and practical remote learning

An LMS is an essential tool for facilitating remote employee training. Online learning can save your company a considerable amount of time and money in the long run.

Whether they work remotely or not, studies show that most workers prefer to learn on their own time, at their own pace. Online learning offers workers more flexibility and leads to higher course completion rates and better information retention.

Alongside that, in-person, instructor-led training courses are decreasing in popularity, partially due to world events like the COVID-19 pandemic, and partly due to the tremendous costs and practical issues associated with running the courses. Creating an in-person training means sourcing an instructor, booking a venue, coordinating schedules, etc. In comparison, an online training course needs to be assembled only once and can be used an unlimited number of times with current and future employees.

An LMS is the key to putting together an online learning program that employees can access, whether they’re at the office or on a hammock in their backyard.

The benefits of LMSs increase with time

Often, the biggest objection to adding an LMS to the company tool stack is the price. While LMSs are available at all price points, you’ll want to choose one that has the features you need to achieve your L&D goals. Although it may require an initial outlay of time and money, an LMS can save you thousands if not millions of dollars in the long run by helping you build bigger and stronger L&D programs.

As we move toward a more collaborative, connected future of work, establishing robust online training programs will become an essential component of building a dynamic and agile organization. It’s nearly impossible to achieve this without the right LMS solution.

Bowled over by the benefits of an LMS, but not sure what to do next? Check out our ultimate resource guide on LMSs to learn more about choosing the right tool for your organization.

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