eLearning Course Creation Toolkit: 5 Tips To Choose The Best LMS Before You Create Online Courses

Choose The Top LMS For eLearning Course Creation
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Summary: Selecting the best LMS for your course creation endeavors is a good first move. But how do you tell these LMSs apart and identify the right one for your organization and budget?

Find The Ideal LMS For Online Course Creation

The type of LMS you pick for your firm is driven by lots of different factors. How big is the role of online training? Is your LMS primarily an online course development tool or do its other functions outweigh eLearning? How much can you afford to spend…and how much do you want to? What duration do you have for eLearning course development, will you build it from scratch or do you want eLearning templates? Are there any specific options you can’t do without, such as translation tools or branded palettes? Let’s explore 5 criteria you should consider when choosing the ideal LMS for eLearning course creation.

eBook Release: Cost-Effective And Custom-Tailored: A Comprehensive Guide To Create Online Courses With Limited Resources
eBook Release
Cost-Effective And Custom-Tailored: A Comprehensive Guide To Create Online Courses With Limited Resources
Discover a complete guide to creating effective online courses even on a tight budget..

1. Consider The Online Course Structure

Creating an online course is a massive challenge. You may not be clear on how you want it to go. But you do have a rough idea though. You might, for example, know a proportion of your employees are based in remote locations. Or you might want to include videos by the CEO to foster a sense of community. As you shop for an LMS, check if it has the design tools you need to generate that type of content. Videos and audio clips can be recorded on your smartphone, but your LMS will need editing tools. To accommodate your offsite workers, it may need mobile optimization or built-in mobile apps. These are both for mundane use and specific online courses.

2. Consult Your L&D Experts

Your Learning and Development teams are the ones who will directly work with your LMS. They’ll create online courses, teach colleagues to use them, serve as tech support, and assess employee progress. So, they should play a big role in your LMS purchase decision. Spend some time with them, finding out the kind of eLearning development skills they possess. Which programming language are they familiar with? What features do they consider must-haves? What are their thoughts on the "gimmicky" USPs being promoted by software vendors? They have a clearer idea of what sparkly features offer value and which ones are pointless buzzwords. You should even encourage them to map out their daily work practices to see how they’ll use the Learning Management System and which tasks they perform.

3. Do An Online Training Storyboard

Your content developers already have an idea of what they’d like to do with the LMS. But if you really want value for money, drill down. Have them create an online course outline, draft a table of contents, or sketch a wireframe. At a glance, you’ll see the exact features needed to execute every unit and chapter. For example, say your online training storyboard has a chapter on invoicing. This tells you the LMS requires an automated, integrated, invoicing implement. It may need a quotation generator, too. And it needs online training templates for both, so employee training participants can practice with different documentation formats. Or say your online course involves group work and collaborative quests. The LMS will need a real-time feedback tool to enable simultaneous simulation.

4. Spend Some Quality Time With Your LMS

No LMS worth its salt excludes free trials. So, if you can’t play around with it at least a few days before buying, you may want to rethink your decision. Most LMS platforms—and individual courses too—allow a dry run of a week, maybe even a month. During that period, assess the eLearning course thoroughly from multiple aspects. Check the User Experience, tools and features, scalability, and budget-friendliness. This doesn’t just cover the price. Calculate expenses like licensing, subscription, customization, external add-ons, and upgrades.

You should also gauge per-user fees against blanket charges and see what makes more sense for your firm. Another option is to sign up for a free demo. Some vendors provide pre-recorded demos that walk you through the online training tool’s features. While others send one of their reps to show off the online training tool so that you can see its eLearning course creation features in action.

5. Run A Background Check

The people selling your LMS software may not seem like essential spokes in your purchasing wheel. But remember, their reputation rubs off onto the product. Look at other software they produce, and what their industry peers think of them. If they have any awards or referrals, evaluate them to see if they’re helpful. A testimonial about their user-friendly translation options is irrelevant if you only need it in English.

An award for "best aesthetics" may not even matter if you need a mobile component and the LMS doesn’t have one. Follow up with their past clients and ask questions off a checklist of must-haves and absolutely nots. You can also look for online reviews and ratings to see what past users thought of the product. The most effective way to choose the best LMS before you create online courses is to learn from someone else’s experience.

Unfortunately, when purchasing officers are shopping for an LMS, they may focus on the wrong aspects. They might over-emphasize budget and appearance over practical tools. So how can you make the right choice? Think about the type of online course you’ll need, and the tools needed to develop it. Your L&D team is best placed to guide you. Seek their input and take it to heart. Do an online training storyboard to help you identify the eLearning course creation tools your LMS requires. Dive deep into the free trial, exploring all areas of the LMS. Finally, check the credentials of your vendors: awards they’ve won, past clients, and LMS expertise. And research online reviews to get an insider’s POV.

Do you want to create online courses for profit? Are you trying to cut costs and develop custom-tailored online training for your employees? Our eBook Cost-Effective And Custom-Tailored: A Comprehensive Guide To Create Online Courses With Limited Resources can help you choose the best tools for the task and create an accurate budget. It also features tips to develop online training on a tight timeline and design principles to keep in mind.