What is an LMS (Learning Management System)?

What is an LMS (Learning Management System)?


For companies and training organizations, the LMS platform is now an essential tool for setting up a complete e-learning program.

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What is an LMS, or Learning Management System?

LMS is the acronym of the English term Learning Management System which means in French “learning management system”. It is software that allows you to create, distribute and manage online training devices from a single interface. Learning and management are therefore the two main functions of this tool.

The first LMS platforms appeared in the 1990s in the field of higher education. These were basic tools that were used for the organization and management of online courses. But it was at the beginning of the 2000s that the use of LMSs gained momentum, and more particularly on the business side. The use of these platforms then enabled professionals to meet their own training needs. Today, companies deploy 2 billion euros of activity in the field of LMS.

Used in companies and training organizations, LMS platforms are aimed at different categories of actors:

  • The administrators who drive the learning platform through updates and settings to provide training content tailored to the needs of trainers and learners.
  • The trainers who are responsible for creating e-learning training courses and leading the training.
  • The learners (students, employees, customers, partners, etc.) who follow the training courses for which they have registered thanks to the interface created by the administrators.

An LMS platform comes in two forms:

  • the LMS in SaaS mode, whose data is stored on a cloud-type internet server;
  • the locally hosted LMS that companies and training organizations must register on their own servers.
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Why use an LMS platform?

Today, trainers face many problems, characterized, among other things, by demotivation and difficulties in following the training paths for learners. Indeed, the latter have constantly changing needs in terms of courses, but also support and accompaniment. To respond to this, trainers must find ways to renew their training and coaching offer. These reasons make LMS platforms the solution best suited to the new needs of each and to the digitization of training.

Examples of sectors suitable for LMS

All companies that want to capitalize on the progress of their employees and that attach particular importance to their skills development can integrate a learning management system. In some sectors of activity, the use of an LMS platform is more appropriate.

  • The healthto help professionals in learning non-technical skills such as behavior in front of patients and certain theoretical notions.
  • The media and the services telephony to train sales forces and partners.
  • The industrial production to monitor the development of skills and the renewal of employee licenses.
  • I’immovable so that brokers can maintain their knowledge and benefit from certification.
  • the legal sector to inform participants of the latest changes in laws and procedures.
  • The associations to train volunteers on the functioning of an association, the events and their missions.
  • The Bank and the insurance to train advisers and salespeople and update their knowledge.
  • I’aeronautics to train staff who use mobiles and tablets in offline mode.
  • the retail to train internal and external sales forces.
  • I’hotel and the tourism to train seasonal workers.

Thanks to the LMS, all actors can get involved in the training process within the company or the training organization. Without forgetting that the use of this type of software has a large number of other advantages, both for learners and for trainers and administrators.

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Advantages of LMSs

For learners, the LMS platform is a way to train faster, easier and more efficiently. It also helps to increase their commitment through the use of specific coaching tools. They can more easily access training and log in whenever they want. They are not subject to time constraints or travel obligations. The e-learning platform allows each learner to follow a personalized training thanks to an easy-to-use interface.

In addition, the system takes into account the mobility of learners and adapts to different connection media: computer, tablet, smartphone. Access to and reading of the various educational content is thus facilitated and learners can learn from anywhere. On the LMS platforms, learners can find all the training courses that correspond to them, but also exchange with other learners and the teaching team.

By using an LMS, trainers have the ability to:

  • create content directly from and on the learning platform;
  • create training with high added value;
  • quickly and easily update training content;
  • provide more consistent and personalized learning;
  • facilitate the distribution of training content;
  • animate communities via forums or blogs to exchange with learners;
  • organize lists of learners and groups;
  • access new features to provide learners with a better experience;
  • collect educational data;
  • follow the progress of each learner.

As for administrators, the LMS platform helps them to:

  • update databases;
  • access reporting on training monitoring, skills management and certifications;
  • maintain compliance required in their industry;
  • create more attractive training paths;
  • employ tools to facilitate the management of training (registration rules, dashboards, evaluations, communication tools, etc.).

Finally, the LMS makes it possible to consult all the information concerning the training, and in particular the educational content, which is centralized on the learning platform. All this data is also stored and protected by a security system.

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In business, using an LMS platform also brings its share of advantages.

  • Employee loyalty.
  • The sustainability of knowledge.
  • Reduced training and development costs.
  • Improving team and community spirit.
  • Continuous improvement within the various departments, ultimately leading to an increase in customer satisfaction.

How does an LMS platform work?

The LMS includes functionalities based on learning and the management of the community of learners. The options offered by the platform provider can be configured or activated according to the needs of companies and training organizations. The main functionalities are based on the design of training content and the monitoring of learners. But for better use, the various stakeholders can also access other features on the platform: integrated content editor, reporting system, certification system, notifications and announcements, multisite management, multilingual availability, skills management, etc.

Different learning methods thus coexist on an LMS platform.

  • E-learning which is based on 100% online learning.
  • Mobile learning to access training from a mobile or tablet.
  • Social learning, which is characterized by exchanges and sharing between learners and trainers within a community.
  • Gamification to offer learners fun training through a reward system.
  • Blended learning, which consists of face-to-face training sessions and online learning activities.
  • The virtual classroom that allows you to participate in distance training sessions.

For many companies, using an LMS platform meets multiple objectives.

  • Train employees (technical skills, sales, etc.).
  • Welcome and integrate a new employee.
  • Enable employees to take compliance training.
  • Learn new technologies.
  • Manage assessments and certifications.
  • Meet the training needs of extended businesses and franchises.
  • Train its customers on its products.

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