The Most Important Element Of LMS Implementation: Working With A Great Customer Success Team

The Most Important Element Of LMS Implementation: Working With A Great Customer Success Team
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Summary: Congratulations, you've chosen a Learning Management System (LMS) partner for your learning, training, and developmental needs. That is half the battle.

Working With A Great Customer Success Team Is The Most Important Element Of LMS Implementation

Next up, you have to consider how you want to tackle the implementation process. While the LMS you chose has all of the bells, whistles, and features you were looking for—the actual value your LMS partner will provide is having a strong Customer Success team to drive your implementation.

Having the momentum of purchasing a new LMS for your company only lasts for a short period, so having a quick, efficient, and organized implementation process is critical. In this article, we aim to break down this process into 4 steps: the kickoff meeting, the progress meeting(s), a soft launch, and a live launch.

1. The Kickoff Meeting

The kickoff meeting is arguably the most important step of them all. Being in Customer Success, I know first-hand that an organized strategy is the most efficient way to convey your process to a new customer and is the primary purpose of the first meeting. You want to ensure your new partner has control of the situation and has a plan in place for you to be successful in your implementation and beyond.

I like to break down this meeting into 2 main segments:

  • Creating a schedule that will be your playbook to follow.
  • My understanding as much as I can about you as individuals, your specific use case/pain points, and your business/training goals.

The schedule we create together will serve as our roadmap throughout the implementation process. Depending on your timeline, the complexity of your plans, and a variety of other variables—this schedule can vary dramatically.

Goal setting is crucial. It establishes a baseline metric that you can strive for throughout the process, have your customers think about the ways your product will impact their business, and it creates an excellent dialog for future conversations. At the end of this meeting, both you and your LMS partner should come away feeling prepared, and ready to tackle the next few weeks of implementation head on.

2. The Progress Meeting(s)

The purpose of these follow-up meetings all tie back to keeping you and your LMS partner accountable. In most cases, the implementation of an LMS is not the only responsibility of your primary point of contact.

By connecting every week or biweekly, it ensures that you are on track to launch your LMS and meet your deadlines. Make sure that these meetings have dates, calendar invites sent out, and specific agenda/action item from the previous call. There should always be a purpose to what you are doing, with a clear direction of what to do next.

As a product/industry expert, you need to lead the conversation. More often than not, I've seen people approach these meetings unprepared, and it doesn't do you, or more importantly, your customer any good. Look at these meetings as milestone benchmarks to your customer's implementation journey.

Some high-level topics of conversation for these meetings include:

  • Building out the syllabus for your first course
  • An LMS walkthrough for admin other than the primary power users
  • Technical discussion (ie: single sign-on, integrations, API, Webhooks)
  • Marketing conversation (this can be focused on design elements of the LMS, or strategy for go to market messaging)
  • These meetings are the building blocks of your implementation

3. A Soft Launch

You're now at the point where you've done most of the heavy lifting of creating content, learning how to use a new platform, creating your first course (maybe even a few), and all you want to do is launch.

While I love the eagerness of when customers want to push out their newly created masterpieces they have been working on for weeks to their employees/partners/customers, this is where you need to be the strategic partner they signed up for and recommend one last step before officially going live.

When you are entrenched in a project like an LMS implementation, it's hard to take a step back and look at what you've done with a different perspective. Leaning on your colleagues, or on a small group of test users is vital to a successful launch.

Have them go through your course(s) as end users from start to finish, and prepare them with questions/topics to look out for.

Some of these include:

  • Is the content engaging?
  • The flow of the course
  • Design/overall look and feel
  • Course length
  • Is there anything missing that you would add?
  • What (if anything) can be done better?

4. A Live Launch

Woohoo! The moment we've been waiting for. This is a considerable achievement that shouldn't be taken for granted, with both Customer Success and the customer feeling like this was accomplished as a team effort. Just like the soft launch, feedback will be essential.

Technically, your implementation is never officially over. A good program is one that is always making tweaks, building new/different content, and learning from your end users on how you can improve. The value of CS post-launch is by being an extension of the customer.

This can be achieved in many forms, whether that is being insightful, providing the latest information and trends in eLearning or a specific industry, adding suggestions on content strategy, leading business review meetings, or checking in on how we are doing in reaching the goals of the program.

Summary

The implementation of an LMS is not an easy task. From day one, having a strategic member of Customer Success leading the way is a must. It's great to see that we are now at the point when vendors are being considered that it's not all about features, as that can only get you so far.

Building an eLearning program is one that takes effort from both sides, and if done correctly with a process in place, the results will speak for themselves.

Remember, the LMS implementation process doesn't end at the time of the launch. Always look for ways to improve the system, optimizing content, adding more courses and perfecting the User Experience for as long as the LMS is in operation.

For more tips and tricks, see this article: Prepare for an LMS Implementation of this Project Plan

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Northpass is the learning platform that gives businesses the freedom to easily create, manage and scale their learning programs exactly the way they want.