Mistakes to AVOID when purchasing LMS platforms/software: Discuss/rant :)
Hello you amazing community of learning and LMS experts!!
I’m doing a bit of research on that ole 20/20 vision thing – All the things you’ve experienced that could have been done better, or mistakes that are commonly made or more to the point avoided – When companies look into buying / choosing an LMS.
I’ve been working with LMS software/ platforms for the last 10 years with more face-palm stories than good ones – and I’m interested to hear what you all think, any tips you think people should know!
Here is a basic list I’ve put together to start off with (please feel free to add / elaborate)
- Scope your functionality properly. Do you or will you need:
- Custom branding
- Gamification (and what does that mean to you?)
- Social (and how do you define that?)
- Integration with other systems
- Functionality –Scorm/TinCan or other eLearning applications
- Reporting (and what level of detail you want)
- A payment gateway
- Support (and does it need to be available in the same time zone as you?)
2. Using expert recommendations vs. the top results in Google
- Make sure you factor in the cost of this expert opinion, this is an amazing investment in future proofing (i.e. not starting again from scratch in 2 years)
3. Budgeting for your LMS
- Take account that most LMS platforms will have on-going costs
- Set up and customization can be expensive,
- Expect a compromise between a price you can afford and the functionality you need
4. Going to Market with a tender
- Take your top picks and ask them to tender
- Healthy competition between LMS software providers can get you a better deal
- This is a great way to set the terms of a working relationship from the get go
5. In house technical Team or Software partner support
- As alluded to in point 1.g
- An internal resource can be cheaper than paying a partner for any change or custom development to a system
- Admin team training or experience with a system / super users
6. Take into consideration the size of your company and your future growth
- Large companies and Industry standard vs. Scalability
- Universities/Education providers Consider Multi-Tenancy not multiple LMS instances (or just use hierarchical users/teachers/manager groups the way is supposed to work!)
- Small companies, using less traditional software/ sites can be more effective
- Individuals – Self hosted course ware platforms vs subscription course ware platforms (there’s hundreds) depends on your budget for overheads and projected student numbers.
7. WHAT HAVE I MISSED?
Would love to hear from everyone your thoughts and experiences... :)