What are the benefits of having an LMS

Apr 26, 2016


I've recently begun working for a software company who have a bespoke product and I have been asked to provide a plan for training users on the use of the software.

My initial feelings are that we create a repository of how-to-videos demonstrating the software and use an authoring tool such as Articulate to add interaction to them.

However I'm struggling to see what the benefit is to buying an LMS when the majority of the eLearning will be in video format. Is the main reason just the tracking and reporting of trainees?

Would it not be better to host all the videos using a video content management system?

Any help or advice especially if you've had the same issue would be appreciated.



11 Replies
Julie Stelter

Hi Phil,

Just because you are creating eLearning doesn't mean you have to go with an LMS. It depends upon your needs.  Since all of your content is in video, a video management system (VMS) may be your best solution. If you are going to sell the course, then make sure your choice offers eCommerce. Many VMS systems have a sophisticated tracking system since they are used for lead generation. Make a list of your "must-haves" and "would like" and then investigate products. Always make decisions based upon your strategy. 



Lynée Beck

A LMS also allows you to decide who gets access to your courses. You can manually enroll users or give them course access codes to join themselves. 

If your content is embedded users can access it with a single sign-on. This is especially important in the era of data privacy in the K12 world. LMSs usually offer functional extensions, too, like linking Google Drive, Remind or GoAnimate. 

For me, the hands-down best feature is community. Users can interact with each other via media albums, discussion boards, group resources and announcements. This could simplify your workflow as you improve your course by creating a discussion board just for users to log any issues they find. 

If you are struggling with the idea of purchasing a LMS, try using a free version and see what you think. My favorites are Schoology, Canvas and Desire2Learn. For eCommerce, I like Talent LMS. 

Bob S

Don't forget two other key benefits of an LMS...


" Learning Paths" for users.  

While each LMS handles this differently, basically it boils down to the ability to group lessons/modules together based on a profiles of users. For example, if you have "super users", for your software they might need all training. But someone else with a more narrow/specialized role might only need some of the video modules and key supporting docs/job aids. The ability to group content and assign it to users as needed is huge in today's busy work environment.


"Content Consolidation" by type or topic.

Where do you place the just-in-time job aids? How do you serve up printable checklists? What if you want to offer a written summary of the video?  A good LMS will allow you to combine many different content types and organize them by type, topic, course or learning path. This provides a one-stop learning experience for all materials and resources that is far easier to curate and deploy to users.


Phil Whitehead

Hi Bob

Thanks for your reply.

The ability to group trainees can also be done through the VMS but I suspect it would be easier through the LMS.  The point regarding 'Content Consolidation' is well worth considering for my particular case as our system doesn't allow for anything other than video.

Thanks again certainly given me food for thought


Mohammad  Hassam

Hi Phil,

I am sorry, I am not able to answer your question as the question is incomplete. You mentioned that you have given this project but you forgot to mention the scope of this project. What will happen once you are done with these videos? Are learners going to be evaluated somehow or it's just a video as addition?

If they are going to be evaluated then LMS is the best option. If not, then any video content management system is a good option.

Phil Whitehead

Hi Mohammad

Thanks for the comment.

Early thoughts were that the training was simply to be a series of demonstration videos.

However the thinking has moved on somewhat to the point that what I'd like to achieve is that the trainee will progress through a course ranging from basic to super user and at the end of each stage they are certified as competent in the use of the software to that point.

So, I think it is now clear that I'm going to need an LMS to be able to achieve what I've set out. The next issue will be trying to decide which LMS from the myriad of different options available.




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