Learning Management Systems empower L&D managers and users by collecting a wealth of helpful learner data. Knowing when learners are active, where they excel, where they might struggle, and what most engages learners, is all crucial in evolving and bettering training programs. But how should L&D managers and course administrators go about collecting this data? What are the most helpful Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) for an online training course, and how can LMS software be used to develop training KPIs once they’ve been collected?
1. Training KPIs for User Engagement
It’s no surprise to find that, in general, the more learners immerse themselves in course content and communicate with their peers, the better their performance is likely to be. In turn, the more that users engage, the more beneficial LMS content becomes for the entire group of learners. Studies have shown that discussion forum performance is a strong indicator of overall online course performance. In addition, the amount that a learner engages with discussions is also a reliable predictor of the quality of their work. Part of the reason that LMS discussion forums are great for indicating performance and engagement is that they provide a live, reactive environment, where learners are required to test and defend their understanding.
Other metrics for user engagement relate to user activity. Activity-based KPIs can be sourced from looking at when users log into LMS applications, and when that number rises above or falls below average. For example, how often is the average learner online, and when online, how long do they stay? Using reporting and analytics solution like Zoola Analytics, L&D managers and specialists can easily access this kind of data and create actionable insight reports to increase user activity. In simple terms, the more time that users are encouraged to spend on LMS platforms, the more likely they are to engage. At a more detailed level, the more valuable that L&D managers can make that engagement time, the higher learners are likely to perform.
When measuring user engagement is also important to not discount the qualitative feedback of L&D specialists and learners. Experienced L&D specialists have an intuitive understanding of learner engagement, and most LMS offer the capability to collect feedback through scales, ratings, emojis, or open-ended written responses.
2. KPIs for Learner Attendance, Completion, and Progress
Beyond user engagement data is a whole range of fundamental metrics that can be used to interpret learner performance. Average pass rates, quiz scores, test results, and completion times are all simple indications of learner progress. When compiled into an LMS dashboard, they provide a clear visual insight into the appropriateness of course content and the performance of students. From this, L&D managers can develop action plans to increase or decrease complexity, or develop alternative learning approaches.
The most common training KPIs are those that track course attendance and completion. When many training courses operate on remote, distance or independent learning models, raw data on how many users are working through to completion is a fundamental indicator of course relevancy and design suitability. Similarly, tracking any increase in overall student sign-up numbers over time will quickly show the popularity and marketability of different subjects and skill areas.
3. KPIs for Company-Wide and Bottom Line Performance
At the end of most business-related LMS courses is an important question: how much value is LMS training adding to our team? While learner engagement, progress, and enjoyment are all critical factors, for many organizations, the most important KPI is whether an LMS contributes to company-wide success. In a sales-based environment, this might mean looking for changes in order numbers, or client data that relate to changes in LMS utilization. In a service-based industry, it might mean changes in customer satisfaction or increased efficiency. The key point is to develop a set of expectations for what training should deliver. KPIs can then be established based on those expectations.
It may be possible to relate the adoption of an LMS program to overall profit and revenue KPIs. For example, you might ask if any quantifiable change in revenue correlates to a change in LMS learner performance and engagement. However, the bottom line KPIs most likely to be associated with LMS eLearning are HR-related: those connected to employee culture and performance. For example, have employees reported higher satisfaction ratings after using an LMS? Are business goals being achieved more frequently, more quickly, or with more consistency?
It can be beneficial to create metrics that track these sorts of performance goals in wider work, and then compare the results to your training KPIs. That way, your KPI data can be used to show how learners are being supplied with content and training that results in measurable, company-wide improvements.
If you’re looking for some expert help determining your training KPIs and utilizing them to reach your eLearning goals, contact us today!
At Lambda Solutions our learning experts are on standby, waiting to find the learning solutions you need, covering everything from cloud-based LMS options such as Totara Learn, all the way to analytics reporting solutions such as the award-winning Zoola Analytics.
Disclaimer: This article was contributed by guest blogger Joe Hitchcock. Joe is a content writer from Vancouver BC, interested in culture, education and fiction. The views and opinions expressed belong to the guest blogger alone, and do not necessarily reflect the official policies or opinions of Lambda Solutions.