10 Must-Have LMS Features for Any Employee Training Program

One of the most important things you can do as a business is to have highly skilled employees at every level of your organization. What’s just as important is to figure out how to keep them from leaving.

Having engaged employees leads to a more productive workforce and increased profits. One way to keep them engaged is by offering a robust training program that can teach them the hard skills they need to perform their jobs. That can be coupled with soft skills training to move up the ladder and compliance training to satisfy workplace requirements. A good training program also offers options for career development.

Offering a training program to your employees enables them to add needed skills to their repertoire and fill in any knowledge gaps. This leads to more confidence in their abilities. Ninety-two percent of employees say employee training programs have a positive effect on their engagement

This also helps increase employee retention, which not only keeps top talent around but costs the business less than if they need to replace someone. When employees receive the training they need, their companies are 17% more productive and make 218% more profit per employee.

What to Do Before Implementing an Employee Training Program

Before you implement a new training program, determine your needs, goals, and what kind of training will make sense for your workplace. Here are some helpful questions to get you going:

  • What kind of training programs do you want to offer? Are you looking to provide training for onboarding, compliance, hard skills, or soft skills?
  • What goals do you want to accomplish with your training? Will you require all employees to pass a compliance test? Or will you offer courses for them to take when they want?
  • Who will be taking your courses? It could be all employees, managers, or those with a certain job function.
  • What kind of courses do you want to offer? Do the courses already exist, or do you want to create new content specific to your company’s needs?
  • What delivery method would be best? Providing training in-house may be great for training employees about your company culture, but it might also be limiting. You can only provide as much as your resources allow.
  • Do you need to scale? Having on-site, in-person training is great for small teams, but what about large companies with hundreds or thousands of people to train?

A Learning Management System, or LMS, can answer these questions about employee training and can provide sustainable, much-needed benefits to your team. An LMS can offer large content libraries with courses that can be accessed on demand. This system can also offer tracking and reporting, is easily scalable, and is quick to set up.

Whether you’re looking to make the switch from in-person training to online or are looking to set up your first employee training program, here are some must-have features when it comes to your LMS.

Must-Have Features

1. Content Library

You can’t have an employee training program without content, so evaluate the LMS’s course library first. To give your employees the breadth and scope of training they need, look for an LMS that offers courses on: 

  • Hard skills like software and industry-specific training
  • Soft skills like leadership and communication
  • Compliance 
  • And onboarding

The LMS should also offer courses in high-demand skills, like coding, innovation and design thinking, and diversity and inclusion management.

2. Custom Content

Does your LMS allow you to upload custom content? You may need to offer training specific to your company to address required compliance or unique elements of the culture. In this case, you’d want the ability to upload custom content. Even better is an LMS vendor who will help you create it.

3. Ease of Set-Up

Look for an LMS that’s ready to go right out of the box. This means it only takes a few clicks to get started, it can easily integrate with other systems, and it has easy mobile optimization. Think about implementing a single sign-on so users can access their training quickly.

4. Branding

You may not think that having a website look a certain way makes a difference, but make sure your LMS offers the ability to brand its interface. Seeing a branded interface—or one that has the company name and colors rather than a third party’s branding—can create higher engagement in the training and more trust in what’s being offered.

5. Gamification

Having an LMS with gamification is an important psychological driver and has been shown to improve motivation and completion rates. Gamification may mean adding points or rewards for course completion. Doing so gets learners excited to finish their training and can increase knowledge retention.

6. Reporting and Progress Monitoring

You can’t improve what you don’t measure, which is why an LMS with built-in reporting is key to tracking success and value. Use an LMS tracking feature to measure KPIs for the goals and objectives you’ve set around employee training and measure individual improvement to add to yearly performance reviews.

7. User Interface

Since you want your LMS to be a hub of employee activity, find one that your employees will enjoy using. Look for a user interface that’s easy to navigate, fun to use, and visually appealing. Make sure it also guides employees toward the courses they’re required to take, shows their progress, and lets them search and browse to find what they want when needed.

8. Customer Support

An LMS is only as good as the vendor behind it. If something goes wrong, you want to ensure it’s taken care of in a thorough, timely fashion. Look for an LMS that provides 24/7 support via phone, email, or even live chat. Not getting the LMS vendor to solve issues quickly can waste productivity and employee time.

9. Accessibility

Another key feature to look out for is to ensure that your LMS meets (and ideally exceeds) accessibility standards for employees that may need it. This means that the LMS offers options such as high-contrast colors, alt text on images, closed captioning or transcripts on videos, screen reader optionality, and more.

10. Price and Licensing

While employee training programs have been shown to save companies money through retention, engagement, and productivity, an LMS still needs to be affordable. As you evaluate a new LMS, look at pricing, subscription models, pricing tiers, pricing by user, and any lifetime licensing options.

Implementation and Beyond

When it comes to implementing an employee training program, going with a robust LMS is the best option by far. 

But don’t just release it and forget about it. A key way to get employees excited about it is to communicate the many benefits of employee training. You’ll see immediate improvements in knowledge, skills application, engagement, and an overall happier workplace.

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