Learning Content Management Systems (LCMS): The Definitive Guide
October 20, 2023
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The most successful organizations are the ones that create a learning culture, which means that employee development is prioritized regularly.
The foundation for a learning culture is having the right learning management content system (LCMS), which allows you to create training programs and deliver them to employees efficiently. An LCMS helps your L&D team save time and quickly respond to training needs.
Employees with consistent access to professional development are 15 percent more engaged at work and 34 percent more likely to stay with the organization. By using a high-quality learning content management system, you can improve productivity and employee satisfaction in your organization.
What are learning content management systems (LCMS)?
There are quite a few acronyms that describe eLearning systems, and it’s easy to get confused. However, an LCMS isn’t complex—it’s simply a system that allows you to create training content, manage it, and deliver training to your employees.
For example, when you use the Learning Cloud from WorkRamp, you can easily create training programs, manage content in training modules, and make eLearning content available to your employees on-demand and for scheduled training sessions, depending on your preference.
Having all of your learning content on a single platform helps your organization save time, streamline employee development, and maximize the ROI of your training program.
LCMS vs. LMS vs. CMS
There are several different types of training platforms, so it’s essential to understand the similarities and differences.
- LCMS. An LCMS is an end-to-end solution, as we described above. It allows you to create courses, store assets, and deliver training.
- LMS. A learning management system lets you create and deliver eLearning content for employees. With an all-in-one LMS like the Learning Cloud, you can also create and deploy training for customers and partners.
- CMS. A content management system focuses on the course creation process. It allows you to create training modules and makes it easy to store various content types for use in training curriculum. This is especially helpful for creating engaging courses using multimodal learning.
Learning content management system example
Sprout Social is a great example of an LCMS in action. When the company moved to a remote work structure, their existing LMS couldn’t meet their needs. The LMS didn’t allow them to build engaging training courses or track learner progress.
Sprout Social switched to WorkRamp, allowing their team to create engaging training courses with interactive features, including audio, video, and animation. The easy-to-use interface enables the L&D team to collaborate and create high-quality training while working remotely and delivering training virtually.
The courses are also fun and engaging for learners, which drives completion rates. Sprout Social achieved 95 percent learner satisfaction, a 30 percent reduction in time spent scheduling, and an 85 percent on-time course completion.
Features of the best LCMS tools
As you compare different LCMS options, it helps to know what features to look for. Having the right functionality will help your organization get excellent results from training programs, which helps attract and retain top talent.
SHRM found that 76 percent of employees are more likely to stay with a company that offers continuous training.
Here are some features to look for.
Creating the content that goes into your training courses is a key feature of an LCMS. The best options have content creation tools that make it easier for your team, such as prebuilt content you can adapt, templates, and other authoring tools.
For example, with the Learning Cloud, course creation tools are natively built into the platform, and you have access to editable templates and prebuilt content to build training programs.
Centralized content management
Having the right content assets is essential to quickly creating training programs. If L&D has to start over and recreate assets every time, it’s time to get an LCMS that can help make the process more efficient.
Centralized content management allows you to save and reuse assets in multiple ways. For example, if you want to create microlearning courses covering specific topics and also want a more extensive course for those topics, you can repurpose the assets. You can also have specific videos or interactive elements used multiple times in different courses.
By avoiding recreating assets every time L&D creates a course, an LCMS will save your organization significant time and money.
An LCMS doesn’t stop at creating training programs. The right system also allows you to deliver training to your employees in multiple ways.
For example, the Learning Cloud allows you to create both on-demand and live or hybrid training options. You can also use the Learning Cloud for customer enablement, new hire training, sales enablement, and more.
Excellent UI and simple workflows
The best LCMS in the world won’t help your team if it’s hard to use. Choosing a platform that’s intuitive and easy for admins and learners to use is essential.
User-friendly workflows make it easy and quick to create courses, and a great experience for learners makes them more likely to complete training. Knowledge Services discovered this when they chose WorkRamp to launch Knowledge Services University.
The Learning Cloud allowed them to create courses using the resource libraries and pre-built content while using learner badges to incentivize employees to complete training. As a result, they have an average of five course enrollments per employee, with dozens of training programs available.
An LCMS that stands alone is far less valuable than one that integrates with your current technology stack. Finding a platform with various integrations will help you maximize your investment.
The right LCMS will integrate with your sales and support tools, such as Salesforce, Zendesk, or Gong.
An all-in-one platform will also integrate with HR tools to help you connect training completions to employee performance and make tracking required compliance training easy.
Your LCMS should also fit with your scheduling system, communication tools, identity verification tools, and overall learning ecosystem. When the training platform integrates smoothly with the systems you already use, you’ll get significantly better results and return on investment.
Analytics and reporting
Being able to track completions, improvements in performance, and compliance with required training is essential to understand the impacts of your training initiatives. Measuring learner metrics also helps you make necessary improvements to your training programs.
Of course, tracking your training programs and being able to tie them to improvements in performance and business results helps L&D make the case for budget and personnel, making it far easier to show the impact of employee development.
Benefits of learning content management systems
Why should you invest in an LCMS?
Here are some benefits you can expect with the right LCMS platform.
Better access to information
Having training assets stored in different systems is very inefficient. L&D team members have to constantly search for the information they need and then put it together into a training module.
With an LCMS, all of the assets are organized in one place. That means your team can quickly find what they need and have more time to be creative in making training modules engaging and fun.
When someone creates a video clip that fits perfectly with a training course, it helps to engage users with different learning styles. But if you can’t store that asset somewhere, you might not be able to use it again when it’s applicable.
The best, most engaging training has multiple types of content that can address multiple learning styles. For example, you can use slides, videos, games, checklists, simulations, flip cards, and more. However, your team won’t have time to create these from scratch for each module.
Instead, choose an LCMS that allows you to manage, organize, and repurpose content as needed.
Creating engaging training content often requires multiple people to author a single training module. In many content creation systems, working together and keeping everyone on the same page can be challenging.
The right LCMS solves this problem by making it easy to collaborate. The training module and all assets the team needs are in a single platform, and multiple authors can work together to create the best possible training content.
When you have subject matter experts working together seamlessly, you’ll end up with engaging content that will significantly impact your organization.
Improved engagement with employees and customers
Training should be directed internally and externally, and the right LCMS will allow you to create engaging training for employees and customers.
Employee development is essential for your organization to fill skill gaps, develop effective leadership, and retain top talent. SHRM found that employees with consistent access to professional development are 15 percent more engaged with their jobs, which leads to 34 percent better retention rates.
Externally, customer training can boost product adoption and customer loyalty. TSIA found that 68 percent of customers used a product more after training, 56 percent used more features and functions, and 87 percent worked more independently.
Engaged employees will spend more time with your organization and be more likely to contribute using growing skill sets. Engaged customers will have lower churn rates and boost your company’s profitability.
Use the best learning content management system
An LCMS gives you an end-to-end training solution that allows your team to create, manage, and organize training assets, create engaging training modules, and deploy them to your employees and customers. Having an all-in-one solution makes it much easier on your team and allows you to track results and show the impact of training on your organization.
Discover how the Learning Cloud can help you create and deploy engaging employee and customer training. Contact us to schedule a free, personalized demo.
Complete the form for a custom demo.
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Anna SpoonerFreelance Writer
Anna Spooner is a digital strategist and marketer with over 11 years of experience. She writes content for various industries, including SaaS, medical and personal insurance, healthcare, education, marketing, and business. She enjoys the process of putting words around a company’s vision and is an expert at making complex ideas approachable and encouraging an audience to take action.
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