October 11 2016

7 Must Have LMS Features: #6 - Integration

Written by Nimritta P.

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The LMS landscape enhances training effectiveness for organizations in various markets, if you know which features to look for — but with over 600 options in the LMS market, shopping for a new platform is no easy task. We're going to outlinewhich LMS features allow you to enhance the effectiveness of training delivery, increase learner engagement and retention, enhance the user experience, all while saving time and money. This is the sixth of seven blogs in our series, Must Have LMS Features. Check out the last post here. 

LMS Integration Abilities

LMS with integration abilities allow you to get the most out of your LMS - it allows you to incorporate all the features and functionalities that you need, outside of your LMS.

Think of your LMS like a smartphone. The smartphone serves a purpose in itself (calling and texting), but sometimes you want add-ons, which are available in the form of apps. These add-ons can provide entertainment (games), organization (email), further communication (social media like Facebook, or Twitter), and so on. Likewise, an LMS serves a purpose on its own. It is a platform that allows you to train and teach students remotely (depending on which LMS provider you go with, the capabilities of your LMS will vary). However, you may require a few extra features that are outside the LMS market. Maybe you need DropBox, Wordpress, or Google Doc integration. These integrations are “add-ons” that extend the capabilities of your LMS, for whatever specific purpose you may have. These integrations can take your LMS from good, to amazing.

LMS integration options with popular services is always a good sign, when looking for a LMS. Even if you don’t need all the integrations that are being offered, being provided with the option means that this vendor is thinking of you, and prepared to provide you with anything you might need, currently or in the future. If this type of commitment and thoughtfulness is reflective of the service you can look forward to later down the road, you will be in good hands.

Another added benefit of integrated third party platforms in your LMS, is single-sign on. You don’t need to log into your LMS AND Salesforce, for example. Your LMS login will also authenticate your login for other platforms you’re working with, eliminating the need to sign into each individual platform.

One integration in particular that we find clients ask for, is e-commerce integrations. The reason for this is understandable. Time and effort put into the development of eLearning programs is significant. This has moved many educational institutes to put pressure on eLearning departments to become either cost-neutral or profit centers, meaning courses developed need to be sold. Moodle LMS, for example, has a good option for users, through the use of Moodle Ecommerce Plugins. PayPal was the first Ecommerce plugin that enabled transactions directly from Moodle but there are now additional integrations that provide modern online payment options, such as Course Merchant.

Business Problems Solved

  • Allows users to take advantage of necessary features and functions outside of the LMS.
  • Third party vendors and apps that students require in order to optimize success.
  • Student information systems, SSO, content repositories, etc.
  • Enhanced user-experience and engagement.

For all 7 Must-Have Features, download our LMS Buyers Guide!

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