Top 10 Questions To Ask Your LMS Provider

July 12, 2023

So you’ve matched with your LMS Provider, but now you want to get to know them a little better.

Like all good relationships, there are some things you need to fully click with someone. You need to understand who they are, what values they have, where their vulnerabilities lie, and what they can offer.

In the ‘getting to know your LMS Provider’ phase, it’s important to have clear questions in mind. These will empower you to get the answers you need and make the most effective and informed choice for you and your business.

Without further ado, here at the top 10 questions you should always ask your new LMS Provider:

Q’s on integrations
  1. Can the data in your system connect to/feed into other systems in our business, e.g. your HRIS system?
  2. What are the existing ones, and what is the process and cost to integrate with one that is not already on your list?

RED FLAG: make sure you have a plan on what you want to integrate your system with.

 Over-customisation is rife in the market, and it's important to also ask yourself:

“What Is the most important system/s I need the LMS to connect to?” 

Make sure that you are only paying for those integrations and not ones that are irrelevant to your training needs.

Q’s on Help Desk
  1. Do you offer a dedicated help desk?
  2. Where is your help desk managed/what time zone does it operate in? 
  3. Is it a purely automated service, or can my team speak to an actual human to resolve their problem? 

HOT TIP: always check the details of what is included in the pricing. Lower rates may seem appealing upfront, but if you or your team need help with the system or your account, you ideally want support to be available.

Chatbots are all well and good, but you can’t beat speaking to a human—so make sure there is someone you can talk to.

Q’s on reporting
  1. Do you offer real-time/flexible reporting solutions?
  2. What if we want a custom report that is not on your list? What is the process and cost for that?

HOT TIP: dive into the details. It's always important to understand what is ready to use in the system and what still needs to be developed. Often systems have the capacity to deliver what you need, but it’s not fully functional—yet. 

Understanding this process, the associated costs and timings around this are important, so you can manage your expectations upfront.

Q’s on content management 
  1. As part of this setup fee, what can I expect in regards to my content being managed?
  • Do you offer document uploads (e.g. Policies uploads), and do I have to do this myself?
  • Can I bring my own course, and will you upload them? What does this look like?
  1. I have some training and need to go digital. Can you help build me a course?

Clarity is key: always be sure to know what the costs of self-managed vs provider-managed content development look like. 

Some providers can upload different files for you, e.g. SCORM files, PDFs, etc., while others may not. They also may do it for you either for an extra cost or for free, or you may have to manage all content by yourself.

Course development can sometimes be straightforward or complex. Consider doing this yourself for simple course builds, but make sure you get a simple and easy-to-use tool. Most complex course development can be done by a provider who uses authoring tools to do so. An example of an authoring tool is Chameleon Creator, which offers different interactions so that your eLearning is as engaging as possible in a user-friendly platform.

Q’s on implementation 
  1. Based on your understanding of our business, how long do you think it will take to implement with your platform?

Truth and transparency: to be frank, there are a lot of ‘nice to have’ platforms out there with shiny bells and whistles that come with it. 

However, this can mean a long and tedious process to get your platform up and running. Even worse, you will need to make sure your team understands this complex platform, and this hurdle can often not be worth the effort or money you have spent.

After you’ve asked all the questions above, you will get to know your chosen provider a little better. If they manage to meet all your criteria, then you can go ahead and start getting your training done.

When all is said and done, you can start growing your relationship with your provider.

Aalia Hussein
Instructional Designer and Writer
Imaginative and inventive, Aalia is etrainu’s resident writer. She has a passion for weaving words together and storytelling. She’s in charge of etrainu’s content, creating engaging and immersive experiences across learning and marketing.

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