5 Extended Enterprise LMS Deployment Options To Consider
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Extended Enterprise LMS Deployment: 5 Options To Consider

Coming up with great content for your online training programs is a top priority. However, the first item on your list is finding an extended enterprise LMS that is easily accessible and suits your training needs. Thus, you need to evaluate all the deployment options and determine which aligns with your objectives and accommodates your budget. So let’s take a closer look at 5 common extended enterprise LMS deployment strategies.

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eBook Release
External Training 101: Everything You Need To Know BEFORE Buying Your Next Extended Enterprise LMS
Learn how external partner training can improve your profit margins and discover how to find the perfect extended enterprise LMS platform and create a more accurate budget.

1. Software As A Service (SaaS)

In this method of extended enterprise LMS deployment, all the data and online training programs are hosted off-site by the LMS vendor. Clients access the programs and training modules online, without the need of installing the system on their computers or local infrastructure. With a stable internet connection, clients can access the online training materials and courses posted by the LMS vendor as per the user agreement. SaaS LMS model is the preferred extended enterprise LMS deployment option for most organizations as the updates, bug fixes, version upgrades and server monitoring are handled by the LMS vendor. The LMS vendor may choose to handle backups for the client’s data either for free or for a small fee. Cloud-based LMS models are available in different tiers and the client gets to pick the feature, pricing and performance combinations that best satisfies their organization’s needs.

Insider tip: Data security is a major concern for organizations, big and small. As such, you must ensure that your cloud-based extended enterprise LMS has proper safety protocols in place, such as encryption and secure log-in features. When in doubt, read online reviews to see if past clients have had any issues with data breaches.

2. Self-Hosted LMS

This is an extended enterprise LMS deployment model where the online training program is packaged as a web app that clients purchase and install on their servers. The client is tasked with maintaining, scaling the application to more machines within the organization, and updating the software. This calls for familiarity with installation and LMS management procedures. LMS upgrades are not automatic and the clients will have to contact and pay the LMS vendor to renew the license for their self-hosted LMS. Clients who opt for self-hosted systems should ensure that they have a competent team of in-house developers so as to reduce the downtime caused by performance issues and upgrade requirements. Without this, they may experience a lot of delays that interfere with the organization's online training program. For example, employees are unable to access the necessary online training tutorials for an entire week while the system is upgraded. The advantage of this mode of extended enterprise LMS deployment for buyers is its flexibility, in that the buyers can easily integrate the LMS into their servers. They’re also able to alter the code to meet the specific needs of their organization.

3. Open Source LMS

Such Learning Management Systems are free and open to the public. Open source LMSs are highly customizable and anyone can pick up the code and alter it to meet their training needs. They are, however, very sophisticated and require programming knowledge. Thus, you must have the right technical expertise to understand the code and customize it to suit your training needs or hire an in-house IT specialist who can set up the system and then periodically maintain the extended enterprise LMS platform.

Insider tip: Many open source LMS platforms have active online communities, which can significantly reduce the programming learning curve. Ensure the tool has at least an FAQ and online training tutorials you can use to maximize functionality.

4. Custom-Built LMS

Organizations looking to have unique online training programs for their workers can have their LMS custom-built for them. The two most common approaches are to hire an LMS vendor for this task or get their in-house software developers to take up the task. This, however, requires extensive technical expertise to develop, maintain, and upgrade the LMS platform. Custom built LMS solutions usually feature the organization’s logo and brand message, as well as its colors, but, depending on whether the LMS is developed in-house or externally, may incur more sizable up-front costs. However, it’s well worth the investment for companies who want to fully integrate their branding elements.

5. Mobile Accessibility

With many people using their mobile device to gain and access information, mobile accessibility has quickly become a popular LMS feature. Most organizations have their workers located off site. Thus, the only way they can access online training resources is through their smartphones and tablets. Mobile LMS deployment entails the use of a mobile app with pre-downloaded content that is stored on the devices. Users can, therefore, access such online training content wherever, whenever, even when they don’t have an internet connection.

Another Factor To Consider: Specialty LMS (Niche Market)

Certain extended enterprise LMSs are geared toward a niche market. For example, a specific industry who will get the most benefit from the platform’s unique selling points. Extended enterprise LMSs are already classified as specialty software. However, you can take it a step further by choosing a platform custom-tailored for your field. For example, the LMS is intended for distributed external sales teams who require built-in CRM software.

These are the most popular extended enterprise LMS deployment options to consider when investing in an extended enterprise LMS. Each has its pros and cons. The key is identifying your organization’s desired outcomes to determine which platform outshines the others. Do you need a cloud-based system that grants anytime, anywhere access to your remote sales teams? Or a self-hosted LMS that gives you the power to fully customize the User Interface and incorporate your branding?

Want to learn more about the possibilities of an Extended Enterprise LMS? Download our free eBook External Training 101: Everything You Need To Know BEFORE Buying Your Next Extended Enterprise LMS to discover everything you need to know about extended enterprise Learning Management Systems. We’ll help you broaden your profit margins, monitor partner performance, and enhance your customer online training. Get your copy today to learn about the many benefits that an extended enterprise system can bring to your SMB or start-up.

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