What Is An LMS ?

February 17, 2022 0 Comments

Determines the type of What is An LMS you need to be administered Training is the #1 strategy any organization can do to increase performance. With more and more companies opting to offer online training, the demand for LMS (Learning Management System) has increased significantly. This article discusses what is an LMS, the main types of LMS available in the learning market and how they differ in functionality. If you are in the market for an LMS, or want to check if you are using the right type of LMS for your training program, we put together a helpful guide to choosing the right LMS for your needs. In addition, our decision tree infographic will lead you to your complete LMS solution by matching the LMS functionality to your training program needs.

What Is An LMS ?

An LMS is used to deliver online training materials, often referred to as eLearning. The formal definition of a learning management system is a software application for the administration, documentation, tracking, reporting, and delivery of educational courses or training programs.
But an LMS is much more than that. They keep all your lessons in one place, whether it’s safety compliance training for factory workers, recertification for engineers, or corporate policy refresher materials for the office. To make LMS a very important and integral part of an organization.

LMS has matured significantly over the past decade. In the early years of its life, LMS was mostly used by human resource professionals to track employee training and compliance. Most of the staff training was led by the instructor, so the LMS was all the same and common. Over time LMS evolved to accommodate most companies converting to online training. Nowadays, it is estimated that there are over 1,000 LMS vendors competing in today’s learning platform marketplace. An LMS has the ability to make what we know as generic, fade-out training and make it funnier, more engaging, and will help your learners retain information better.

Different Types of LMS

As the demand for virtual learning has grown, so has the trend of specialized systems within the LMS market. Companies are realizing the benefits of training and the power of LMS which is specially designed for their industry. The LMS market can be segmented into three segments:

Extended Enterprise LMS
Employee LMS
Academic LMS

Extended Enterprise An LMS

Extended venture is the concept that a company does not operate in isolation because its success is dependent on a network of partner relationships. An Extended Enterprise (aka Partner) training program focuses on training among individuals within an organization’s network of partners. Partner networks have a unique training challenge that no other industry has faced: managing a training program that includes so many independent organizations is complex. An Extended Enterprise LMS (aka Partner or Channel LMS) has specific functionality that addresses the challenges faced when training multiple audiences.

Each organization has its own unique way of doing business which has made them successful. This includes unique training processes and workflows that are critical to their mission and cannot be turned into a normal workflow to fit into an LMS that does not accommodate them. An extended enterprise LMS is the perfect solution to this problem – whether you are training your extended audience or not. These types of LMS allow customization of the user interface and underlying processes to support your specific business model.

Distinctive Features of an Extended Enterprise An LMS:

Allows performance metrics to be incorporated into your training program
Supports a matrix management structure
Enables users to have multiple job positions or roles under one profile
Allows partners to belong to multiple regional organizations
Sophisticated Certification Program
Delegated User Management Processes
Allows full customization of the user interface and underlying processes

Extended enterprise An LMS vendors include: Latitude Learning, Tortal and Accord LMS.

Employee LMS
An employee LMS helps accomplish three main training initiatives: training new employees, career development, and compliance training.

New employee training is used to quickly transition new employees to their roles. Career development training is typically associated with an organization’s annual review process. Managers train employees on the basis of which skills need to be developed. Compliance training includes human resource policies such as sexual harassment courses, CPR courses, or diversity courses.

Distinctive Features of an Employee An LMS:

Allows managers to easily track compliance
Integrates easily with recruitment and HR information systems
Allows managers to create personalized training plans for each employee
Provides annual review functionality to easily manage annual employee reviews
Provides access to HR departments to manage succession planning electronically
Allows the employee to search for a career and advance to desired positions within the organization


Employed LMS vendors include: Sabah, Sam total and Cornerstone.

Academic An LMS
An academic LMS provides a virtual environment for students, parents/guardians (in K-12 learning), and instructors to interact. Instructors can communicate directly with students and parents, as well as share important resources. Instructors also have access to generate and post grades for assignments, tests, final grades and transcripts. Other LMSs are built to offer courses that last no more than a few hours. Academic LMS must administer courses that last more than 3-4 months.

Managing the scheduling of classes, teachers and students outside the virtual environment is very complex and requires a lot of data exchange to accomplish. For this reason, an academic LMS has rich functionality to maintain virtual and physical classroom environments.

 Supports extended courses lasting 3-4 months
Schedule class, teacher and student assignments over long periods of time
Allows instructors to post and collect assignments and various resources
Allows instructors to post grades and transcripts that can be stored indefinitely

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