What to Consider When Shopping for a Learning Management System

What to Consider When Shopping for a Learning Management System 2560 1707 Balance Point Team

A learning management system (LMS) is a great asset for businesses of any size. In the past, LMS options were only available to enterprise clients and large businesses, but that is no longer the case. Now even small businesses can access the benefits of learning and training opportunities, which directly impact employees and their abilities to progress and build their skills. If your company is considering an LMS for the first time, it’s helpful to evaluate several aspects of each system you’re comparing to find the right option for your business needs.

As you compare different learning management options, it’s helpful to understand some of the core features and how your organization might use them.


The dashboard is one of the first things you and your learners will see upon logging into the system. It serves as the home page and should be intuitive and user-friendly. Within the LMS, the dashboard should include any messages for learners from the organization, along with courses in which they are currently enrolled, training requirements, and records noting what they have completed. A learner may also need to print or save proof of completion, such as a certificate, so this should be accessible from the dashboard.

Course Catalog

A course catalog is where learners can look at what training opportunities are available to them and learn more about each one. An LMS should include a detailed catalog with all available learning content, where administrators and supervisors can also assign courses to their team members. A single course may include multiple learning elements, such as a PowerPoint presentation, a video, a game, a quiz, and/or a syllabus.

It’s also helpful if the courses can be bundled together into learning paths, which can then be assigned to applicable employees. For example, all customer service representatives may need to take courses focused on customer interaction, support and communication. Multiple courses could be bundled together into a learning path designed specifically for those members of your organization who interact with customers and provide service.

The LMS you choose needs to be able to support the learning elements you want to offer to your learners. If video-based learning is important to your organization, ensure that you can upload customized video content to the LMS and share it with employees.

State-Mandated Training Requirements

Many states, cities, and municipalities require certain training courses to be provided to employees. For example, both California and New York have required anti-harassment training that must meet the criteria set forth for topics covered.

The LMS you select should support your state-mandated training requirements without having to spend extra time to build courses.

Engaging Elements

Learning and training are only beneficial if your employees actually listen to and retain the information presented. When information is tuned out, it doesn’t do much good. Engaging learning is a must if you want the topics and data presented to stick, and an LMS can help. Many modern LMS options include gamification, quizzes, and other features designed to gauge participation, competency, and completion. 

The ability to earn a certificate for completing a course or path may also serve as a motivator. Offering certificates that can be saved and/or printed can become an engaging and appealing aspect of a training program for employees. If this is something you want to offer, make sure the LMS you’re considering includes certificates as an option.

Custom Course Creation

The ability to create custom courses catering to the needs of the organization is one of the best elements of an LMS. Your company has unique needs — whether those include rolling out training around a new organizational policy or outlining a new process — you need to be able to quickly reach all employees to provide them with the necessary information. Uploading your own content and creating customized courses will drastically benefit your company’s training program and the employees who utilize it.

Access to Additional Courses/Training

Although creating custom training is important, you may also want to rely on other content creators for more generic training topics. Access to additional training opportunities and courses benefits both the organization and its employees. Your business shows its desire and willingness to invest in employees, providing opportunities to learn new skills and perfect existing ones. A well-trained workforce also tends to be more productive, and your employees will appreciate the opportunity to gain new knowledge.


When considering LMS options, you’ll have to decide whether you want an on-premise solution or cloud-based implementation. In most cases, cloud-based is preferred as it provides a more scalable and cost-effective solution. A cloud-based system will also be updated on the vendor’s schedule without requiring any effort on the part of your organization or users.

Reporting Capabilities

For many companies, reporting on training is one of the critical functionalities of an LMS. Without reporting capabilities, you’re left wondering who has completed their training requirements and whether any of your team members struggled with concepts within the courses. Ongoing reporting that is continuously reviewed at various levels ensures that managers and supervisors can monitor training progress. The ability to quickly pull and print training reports is also critical if your organization faces an audit or needs to submit documentation to maintain compliance.

The Balance Point Solution

Balance Point’s learning management system, powered by isolved, is a comprehensive learning solution available within our human capital management platform. It incorporates many of the critical features outlined, providing a way for organizations to create, roll out, and monitor training for employees. Reporting is simplified and easily accessible to those with the proper permissions, while supervisors and managers can roll out and assign training courses to their team members instantly.

Our LMS delivers access to a library of 150+ pre-built courses on various topics, including customer service, leadership and management, business skills, and more. Some of the anti-harassment courses also meet state regulations, ensuring that your business remains compliant while providing the information employees need to stay safe in the workplace. Customers also have access to add single courses as needed from a selection of more than 50,000 options.

Since our LMS is built into the HR and payroll platform, users don’t have to learn another technology or deal with multiple logins. All data transfers between the modules within the system, ensuring a seamless experience for every learner.

Schedule a consultation to learn more.

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