Jump to content

Learning management systems

Benefits, features, and step-by-step guide to choosing the right system


You are an HR manager faced with the challenge of making training measures more efficient, and promoting employee development. Traditional training methods are proving time-consuming, expensive, and not very flexible. The solution? A learning management system (LMS).


What is a learning management system?

A learning management system (LMS) is a software platform that enables companies to manage training and further education measures centrally. From providing learning content to tracking progress and creating reports—an LMS covers all aspects of the learning process. Learning management systems were first developed several decades ago and have gone on to become an indispensable tool in corporate training.

An LMS consists of various modules and functions that work together seamlessly to create a comprehensive learning environment. These systems are flexible and scalable, making them ideal for companies of all sizes. They enable employees to continuously develop and improve their skills, which ultimately contributes to the company’s overall competitiveness.


The advantages of a learning management system

An LMS offers numerous advantages. First of all, it increases efficiency and reduces costs. Instead of organizing expensive face-to-face training, you can give your employees access to a variety of online courses and resources they can use anytime, anywhere. This means less downtime and higher productivity, as employees can learn at their own pace.

Another major advantage is personalization. An LMS gives you the option to create individual learning paths that are tailored to the needs and skills of each employee. This makes learning more flexible and effective. Employees can track their progress and select targeted content to help them achieve their professional goals. This not only boosts their motivation, but also their loyalty to the company.

In addition, a learning management system facilitates the central administration of all training measures. You can track employee progress, generate reports, and ensure that all training is up to date. This is particularly important in highly regulated industries where proof of training and compliance documentation is required. A learning management system provides a transparent and traceable record of all learning activities, making it easier to comply with regulations.


The functionalities of a modern LMS

A modern LMS typically features a user-friendly interface that makes access to learning content simple and intuitive. User-friendliness increases the acceptance and use of the system among employees. Intuitive navigation, clear instructions, and an appealing design help users find their way around quickly and stay motivated.

In addition, learning management systems can be seamlessly integrated into other company systems, which minimizes administrative effort. This integration enables you to consolidate data from different sources and obtain a comprehensive overview of learning and development measures throughout the company. By connecting your LMS to HR systems, performance management tools, and other relevant platforms, you can optimize the learning process and make informed decisions.

Another important aspect is mobile use. With an LMS, your employees have the option to learn on the go—be it on their smartphone, tablet, or laptop. This flexibility is particularly valuable at a time when remote and flexible working models are becoming increasingly common. Employees can integrate learning content into their daily work routine without being tied to a fixed location or time.

Gamification elements and interactive content also make learning more fun and motivating. Gamification uses principles from gaming, such as point systems, leaderboards, and rewards, to increase engagement. Interactive content, such as videos, simulations, and quizzes, make learning more varied and effective. These methods not only boost learners’ understanding, but also make it easier for them to apply what they have learned in practice.


Step-by-step instructions

How to find the right learning management system

The effective design of employee training courses depends largely on the selection of the right LMS for your company. Follow this step-by-step guide to find the right LMS for your needs.


Step 1

Carry out a needs analysis

Define company goals

Think about what you want to achieve by introducing an LMS. Do you want to improve your employees’ skills, reduce training costs, or ensure that compliance requirements are met?

Identify target group

Determine who the main users of the learning management system will be. Take into account different departments, hierarchy levels, and learning needs.

Analyze learning requirements

Assess the current training processes and materials. What content and formats are needed? Are there any special requirements such as certifications or regular training courses?


Step 2

Define your requirements for the LMS

Define functionalities

List the features you need, e.g. course management, user management, progress tracking, reporting, integration with other systems, mobile use, and gamification elements.

Clarify technical requirements

Make sure the learning management system is compatible with your existing IT infrastructure. Check whether there are any special technical requirements, such as cloud-based solutions or on-premise installations.

Set budget

Determine the budget for the purchase and implementation of the LMS. Take into account both the one-off acquisition costs and the ongoing costs of maintenance and support.


Step 3

Carry out market analysis and supplier research

Carry out research

Search for learning management system providers. Use various sources such as online reviews, trade journals, industry reports, and recommendations from colleagues

Compare providers

Create a list of potential providers and compare their offers based on your defined requirements. Consider the range of functions, user-friendliness, technical requirements, and costs.

Request demos and trial versions

Request demos or trial versions of your shortlisted systems. Test them extensively to get a feel for the user interface and functionalities.


Step 4

Make a selection

Get feedback

Involve relevant stakeholders in the selection process and obtain their feedback. These could include HR managers, IT managers, and representatives from your user groups, for example.

Conduct provider interviews

Conduct interviews with the providers to resolve any questions and obtain additional information. Consider the support and services offered by the provider.

Make a decision

Choose the learning management system that best suits your requirements and budget. Also take into account the feedback from stakeholders and the results from the trial versions.


Step 5

Create an implementation plan

Form a project team

Put together a project team to coordinate the implementation of the learning management system. This might include representatives from HR, IT, and the user groups.

Create a schedule

Create a detailed schedule for the implementation. Take into account all the necessary steps from system setup and employee training through to final commissioning.

Develop a communication plan

Inform all employees about the introduction of the new learning management system. Explain the advantages and benefits of the system and offer support to resolve questions and concerns.


Step 6

Configure and test the system

Configure the system

Customize the learning management system to suit your company’s specific requirements. Set up user accounts, upload learning content, and configure the settings according to your needs.

Carry out a pilot phase

Start with a pilot phase in which the system is tested by a small group of users. Collect feedback and make adjustments if necessary.

Perform troubleshooting and optimizations

Resolve any problems that occur during the pilot phase. Optimize the system based on user feedback to ensure a smooth launch.


Step 7

Conduct training and onboarding

Develop a training program

Create a comprehensive training program for all users of the learning management system. This should include both introductory courses for new users and advanced training for administrators.

Conduct training courses

Conduct the training and ensure that all users have the knowledge and skills they need to use the LMS. Use a variety of formats such as workshops, webinars, and online tutorials.

Provide support

Offer continuous support and assistance to help users with questions and problems. Set up a hotline or helpdesk to ensure rapid support.


Step 8

Launch the LMS and introduce continuous improvements

Launch the system

Start the official launch of the learning management system and make it accessible to all users. Ensure that all necessary resources and support are available.

Measure success

Monitor the use and success of the learning management system. Collect data and feedback to evaluate the effectiveness of the training measures.

Continuous improvement

Use the feedback and data collected to continuously improve the learning management system. Update the learning content regularly and adapt the training strategies to the changing needs of your company.



Banner checklist learning management system eLearning
Banner checklist learning management system elearning

Checklist: It’s easy to find the right learning management system

Over 40 useful features and functions

This checklist allows you to identify the key criteria for your learning management system and set down your individual requirements. Use the checklist to make sure that you have not forgotten any important aspects, then look at your individual requirements catalog.


Why a learning management system alone is not enough!

Topic: Learning culture

The introduction of a learning management system (LMS) can significantly improve your company’s training and further education measures. But an LMS alone is not enough to achieve the success you want. An effective learning culture is the key to realizing the full potential of an LMS and ensuring your employees’ continuous development.

A company’s learning culture should be an environment in which continuous learning and professional development are considered core values. In such a culture, knowledge sharing and further training are actively encouraged and regarded as an essential part of everyday working life. Employees feel encouraged to expand their competencies and acquire new skills.


Why is a learning culture important?

When learning is seen as an important part of the corporate culture, employees are more likely to be motivated to participate in training programs and continue their education. This increases their satisfaction and engagement. So you foster motivation and commitment. 

A strong learning culture supports the company’s ability to adapt to market changes and promotes innovation. Employees who are constantly learning are better equipped to master new challenges and develop creative solutions.

Companies with a strong learning culture are better positioned for long-term success. Continuous training keeps employees up-to-date with the latest developments in their industry, which gives the company a competitive advantage.

So how do you foster the learning culture in your company? 

  • Managers should act as role models and emphasize the importance of learning. When employees see that their superiors are continuously learning and developing, they are more inclined to follow suit.
  • Learning should be seamlessly integrated into everyday working life. Create opportunities for employees to further their training during working hours, be it through short learning units, workshops, or online courses.
  • Reward employees who actively pursue further training. This can be done through certificates, recognition within the company, or other incentives that encourage commitment to continuous learning.
  • Encourage open communication about learning opportunities and successes. Regularly share information about new training opportunities, and encourage employees to share their learning experiences and insights with their colleagues.
  • Offer different learning formats that are tailored to the different needs and preferences of your employees.
  • Gather regular feedback from employees about their learning experiences and the effectiveness of the training programs. Use this feedback to make continuous improvements and adapt the learning portfolio to the needs of your employees.


A learning management system is a powerful tool, but it can only reach its full potential in an environment that actively promotes continuous learning and development. A strong learning culture is crucial to increasing employee motivation, promoting innovation, and ensuring the long-term success of your company. By establishing and maintaining a positive learning culture, you’ll create a foundation from which your LMS can go on to make a sustainable contribution to both your employees’ development and the achievement of your corporate goals.

Nadine Pedro
[Translate to English:] Nadine Pedro, chemmedia AG

Interesting information free of charge?

Take advantage of our expertise.

We regularly share our knowledge and experience free of charge.
Just subscribe to the newsletter to ensure you don’t miss a thing.

Bitte füllen Sie das Pflichtfeld aus.
Bitte füllen Sie das Pflichtfeld aus.
Bitte füllen Sie das Pflichtfeld aus.
* Mandatory field

By confirming, you agree that chemmedia AG may send you whitepapers, news and know-how in the field of e-learning. Of course, we will treat your data confidentially and will not pass it on to third parties. You can unsubscribe from the newsletter at any time and object to the processing of your data in accordance with our privacy policy.

Best practices for using a learning management system

A successful learning management system requires regular updates to the learning content. Make sure your training resources are always up-to-date and relevant. This means that you should regularly add new content, review existing materials, and update them if necessary. This not only ensures that knowledge is current, but also retains the interest and commitment of employees.

Promote a positive learning culture in your company by supporting continuous learning and development. Create incentives and rewards for employees who regularly participate in training and develop their skills. Organize learning events, workshops, and webinars to promote the exchange of knowledge and experience. A positive learning culture helps keep employees motivated and engaged.

Measure the success of your training measures and adapt them if necessary. Use the reporting and analysis functions within the LMS to collect data on learning activities and results. Analyze this data to identify trends and patterns and make informed decisions. Use employee feedback to continuously improve learning content and methods.


Practical examples

Learning management systems

Many companies have already benefited from the introduction of a learning management system. For example, a large retail company was able to reduce its training costs by 30% and significantly increase employee satisfaction by implementing a learning management system. HR and IT managers report positive experiences and provide valuable recommendations for the successful deployment of an LMS.

A technology company used a learning management system to centralize its global training programs and ensure consistency of training content. This led to improved product knowledge and higher customer satisfaction. Employees were able to access new information more quickly and keep their knowledge up-to-date.

Another case study shows how a financial services provider used a learning management system to optimize compliance training for its employees. By using a learning management system, the company was able to reduce training time and ensure compliance with legal requirements. The employees appreciated the flexibility, and the opportunity to complete the training courses at their own pace.


Challenges and solutions

Learning management systems

As with any new technology, there are also challenges associated with implementing a learning management system. Possible problems can include technical difficulties and initial skepticism among employees. You can overcome these hurdles with a clear communication strategy and targeted training measures.

One common problem is integrating the learning management system with existing systems. Ensure that your learning management system is compatible with your existing IT infrastructures and will run smoothly. Work closely with your IT team and LMS provider to overcome technical challenges and ensure a seamless integration.

Acceptance among employees can also be a challenge. Many employees may be skeptical about new technologies or have concerns about user-friendliness. To overcome these hurdles, it is important to clearly communicate the benefits of the LMS and offer training to help employees familiarize themselves with the system.


The bottom line.

A learning management system (LMS) offers a powerful solution to the challenges associated with employee training and development in modern companies. It enables you to make training measures more efficient, reduce costs, and at the same time increase the flexibility and personalization of training.

By managing all your company’s learning activities centrally, you can accurately track your employees’ progress, generate reports, and ensure that all training is always up-to-date and relevant. The integration of gamification and interactive content not only makes learning more effective, but also more motivating for your employees.

The implementation of an LMS requires careful planning and the involvement of all relevant stakeholders. A thorough needs analysis and clear definition of requirements are crucial to finding the right system. With a step-by-step introduction, comprehensive training, and ongoing support, you can ensure that the LMS is used to its full potential.

The future of learning management systems will see exciting developments such as artificial intelligence, virtual reality, and microlearning. These technologies will change learning forever and make it even more appealing and effective.

A well-chosen and implemented learning management system therefore offers numerous advantages for your company. It supports the continuous development of your employees, strengthens their loyalty to the company, and contributes significantly to the long-term success of your organization. Take advantage of the opportunities and actively shape the future of training in your company.

Janet Beier | Senior Marketing Manager
Janet Beier
eLearning author

You may also be interested in the following articles


Image source: Ground Picture/shutterstock.com