choosing the best lms for your saas company
Training & Learning

How to Choose the Best LMS for Your SaaS Business

Globally, the SaaS market is expected to grow annually at a rate of 7.89%, meaning that by 2027, the global SaaS market is expected to hit $344 billion USD. Additionally, research shows that by 2025, 85% of business apps will be SaaS-based.

As the demand for SaaS solutions increases, so does the need for a talented and knowledgeable workforce to help build products and services that successfully solve customers’ problems.

That’s why it is now more critical than ever to invest in a learning management system (LMS) that offers education and training opportunities to your employees and customers. An LMS is an important L&D investment that can drive business growth, enable professional employee development, and equip your workforce with the knowledge and skills they need to succeed in their roles.

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3 reasons to use an LMS for your SaaS business

A well-chosen LMS makes company-wide learning more accessible and is an essential tool to scale your organization’s internal and external training, as well as upskilling programs. It also plays a key role in customer education and onboarding.

1. A scalable LMS grows with your company

The employee onboarding process should be designed to set your new hires up for success. But it’s one thing to successfully onboard one or two new hires at a time, and another to onboard 30 new people on the same day. A scalable LMS can continue to meet your organization’s increasing employee needs, as it grows from the startup phase to enterprise and beyond. 

Compared to live in-person training, online learning programs have no limit to the number of times you can reuse and refresh each training course. They can also be distributed to exponentially more learners simultaneously, and more content can be added whenever needed, without any downtime.  

Many LMS solutions also automate the initial onboarding process and manual tasks like reproducing training plans for new hires, saving significant resources for HR and L&D departments. 

2. An LMS upskills and builds a future-ready workforce

According to a Gartner survey, approximately 58% of workers will require new skills to do their jobs successfully. Meanwhile, nearly 90% of executives in McKinsey’s Beyond Hiring Report said their companies are either facing skills gaps or anticipating them to emerge by 2025. Upskilling employees with an LMS is one of the best ways to equip them with new skills to help them become more competent in their roles.

With an LMS, you can create personalized learning paths to equip every employee with new relevant skills. Some of the most in-demand skills in the SaaS industry are: communication and teamwork capabilities, compliance skills, and security and data management. Conduct a training needs analysis to identify whether your employees lack any of these skills, and then design customized training programs to close skills gaps based on the goals and needs of each learner.

3. Customer training reduces TTV and increases product adoption 

Before your new customers become regular active users, they need specific training to understand and learn how your SaaS product provides consistent value. This process usually takes longer for more complex products that require a high-touch onboarding model (i.e. several calls and in-depth 1:1 training with a customer success manager). In fact, 33.34% of SaaS companies with high-touch onboarding models had an average onboarding period of at least one month. 

An LMS can help reduce this customer time to value (TTV) and increase product adoption rates by educating them on how to use your product, its major benefits, and providing them with specific resources and support. You can also help existing customers get more from your product with ongoing customer training, increasing the likelihood of clients renewing their SaaS subscription period.

You can set up your LMS to integrate product education into the onboarding experience. This can include:

  • An online academy with gamification or microlearning courses to break down technical aspects and encourage completion
  • Personalized learning paths to create a training process that fits each customer’s unique needs
  • Blended learning opportunities to support different learning styles

This kind of personalized, self-directed learning helps build a robust user experience that promotes customer loyalty and engagement.

A built-in authoring tool makes content development quick and easier

As your SaaS company grows, you’ll need to keep up with a growing demand for more training materials. In addition to internal training, this includes supporting your customers’ educational needs. With a comprehensive authoring tool, you can easily create courses with various content options and assessment types to meet different learning needs and goals. 

Creating online learning content without an authoring tool requires coding skills or an in-house developer. But with an LMS-powered authoring tool, you don’t need to manually create courses or training content. Instead, course creators can simply drag and drop components to make a course from scratch. You can make changes and publish new content far more easily and quickly, compared to manually updating course material every time. 

An authoring tool can either be stand alone or built into your learning management system. With a stand-alone tool, you must create content in the authoring tool and then export it to your LMS. On the other hand, built-in authoring tools are integrated directly into your LMS, so you can create new courses without ever leaving the platform. With the latter, you don’t have to worry about compatibility issues when exporting content.

An LMS with built-in authoring capabilities makes course iteration easier and allows you to offer alternative learning methods for increased accessibility and variety. Users can add images, text, videos, and interactive elements to create engaging and dynamic training material. For example, you can create:

  • In-app tutorials to walk new customers through the onboarding process
  • Video tutorials to highlight product updates
  • Micro-courses and gamification to keep employees engaged 

Co-authoring tools create a collaborative learning environment

SaaS companies often need to work cross-functionally with many different departments (e.g., sales, product, customer success, etc.), so having one central system to create, iterate, and deliver training is key. Co-authoring tools democratize the learning process by allowing all employees to build and share online courses and leave feedback. This allows organizations to foster a culture of peer learning and collaboration among teams. 

With a co-authoring tool, multiple users across different teams can collaborate simultaneously on course creation within the LMS. For example, with 360Learning’s built-in co-authoring tool, users can view course progress and evolution in real time, add comments, make changes, implement revisions, and seamlessly review and edit their peers’ contributions. These capabilities help build a shared learning culture, where peers receive valuable feedback from each other to identify areas for improvement and share expertise that expands their learning environment.

Relevance scores keep training content up to date, relevant, and engaging

According to a Wyzowl survey on employee training, 15% of employees say they’ve “never had their training revisited or refreshed.” But to stay competitive, SaaS companies cannot afford to have outdated employee or customer training content. The industry moves quickly and companies frequently have new product releases and updates–which all require new training. So it’s important to ensure that your training content is always up-to-date and relevant for employees, customers, and partners. That’s significantly easier to do when you have an LMS that automates processes to track and update training materials.

A crowdsourced relevance score uses learner feedback to assess whether your course content is up-to-date and relevant. This metric gives you deeper insights into what and how to customize learning content that helps employees and customers meet their current training goals and needs.

A learning needs tool helps identify and fill employees’ skills gaps

Traditional annual or biannual training needs analysis is no match for the rapidly growing and expanding SaaS industry. By the time you’ve completed a manual analysis, your employees could have a whole new set of unmet learning needs. A built-in learning needs tool within an LMS saves time with automation and keeps your L&D team aware of new training needs in real-time throughout the year. It puts learners in the driver’s seat by allowing them to quickly and easily declare their training needs–turning this into a proactive, rather than reactive, process.

An automated learning needs tool enables you to get continual input from your learners about which areas they need the most help in–and how you can address these learning needs. This helps companies identify internal subject-matter experts and upskill employees more effectively, with less effort. 

On the 360Learning platform, a learner can proactively declare and contextualize a learning need as it emerges, and share it directly on the platform at any time. No need to wait until company leadership conducts a formal training needs assessment.

For example, let’s say a developer wants to learn a new programming language to complete a project they’re working on. They can share this goal with teammates on their learning platform, who can upvote the learning request if they also want to learn that skill or see value in it. Internal subject-matter experts on this topic can respond directly and create relevant training content, without having to jump through administrative hoops. This also creates a collaborative learning culture in which teammates learn from their peers, and subject matter experts within your company share their skills and transform their individual knowledge into institutional knowledge.

SaaS innovation thrives with customer and employee training automation

Innovation happens when you have educated customers and skilled employees. A comprehensive learning platform with a focus on collaboration and automation can help you onboard customers faster, shorten the time to value (TTV), or drive product adoption at scale.

And using a platform that makes information sharing among employees easy and scalable improves training outcomes and allows your company to preserve its institutional knowledge.

If you’re looking for a powerful learning management system powered by collaborative learning, find out how 360Learning fits the bill with a personalized demo today.

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