aLearning Blog

Online Learning for Trade Associations

Why are So Many LMS Buyers Dissatisfied?

Posted by Ellen on July 15, 2011

Patti Shank, in her 2010 “Getting Started with Learning  Management Systems” research report for the e-Learning Guild cites some important findings:

  • Of the 909 survey respondents, “more than a third think that the LMS can be an “impediment to learning.”
  • “Only about 62% of respondents said that their LMS lives up to vendor promises.”
  • “Almost 13% plan to abandon their LMS.”
  • “On average, most respondents spent two to six months on each phase of implementation except for administration, which took longer.”

Do a Google search on “dissatisfied with LMS” and the number that keeps popping up is 25%. That’s a lot, considering the time and expense it takes to select and implement such a system.

Is it the fault of the vendors? The products? The buyers?

Well… probably a combination of all these.

Garry Kranz adds a bit of perspective. In his article for the February 2011 issue of Workforce Magazine Online, “eLearning Hits its Stride,” he cites these findings:

  • More than 70% of enterprise organizations [multi-unit corporations] have an LMS
  • Of those who have an LMS, fewer than 20% have a formal, documented learning strategy
  • Of those with a documented learning strategy, under 7% have a content sub-strategy

Ikes! Think maybe the lack of a learning strategy has something to do with their LMS frustrations?!?

Creating an elearning strategy isn’t just about deciding which content to put online. It involves planning around (and for) personnel and systems. You might find you won’t even need an LMS! Instead, you might decide to focus on something that will lead you closer to ICE (see the previous post for more on intelligent content engineering).

The moral of the story is to do your homework.  Taking the time to strategize your elearning involvement should help you make decisions that will lead you to success (you’ll recall that this is what Tagoras found out in their recent study as well).

Don’t ignore the data!

Don’t let your association leaders ignore it, either. If you’ll need more resources or time to create a meaningful strategy, use these reports to support your position. To do anything less is to shortchange yourself, your organization’s leaders, and your membership. You don’t want that, do you?!?

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