Training Programs

Questions to Ask When Selecting an Online Learning Partner

buying lms technology from a vendor

The learning technology industry is growing larger every quarter, and that success attracts more companies to enter the learning market. While that competition puts pressure on learning technology companies to deliver better service, products, and prices to you, with more competition comes more noise.

With so much information out there, it can be difficult to ensure that you’re making the most informed decision.

That’s why we recommend that you ask for the right information yourself, with these questions.

1. What Happens After We Sign the Contract?

You may love a technology solution, but unless you go through an effective implementation process that shows you how you can get the most out of it, you may not be able to access the full benefit of a solution, lowering your ROI.

Beyond that, while some companies have client success teams to increase utilization and help build ROI, not every company has that much-needed service. Even when it’s advertised, the service you expect might not be the reality for any given vendor. Make sure to look for reviews and testimonials that indicate what their service is like.

Be specific with your expectations and ask any potential vendor if they can meet those specific expectations.

2. How Does Your Technology Integrate With Our Existing Technology?

If you’ve already invested in learning technology like an LMS, ensure that you can easily implement third-party or custom content.

Almost every company advertises interoperability between their technology and other systems, but in reality, integrating third-party and custom content can often be a difficult process.

Make sure that you understand the specifics behind uploading files of your own. SCORM and AICC courses may integrate easily, but if you have any gamified learning that runs on Flash, you may run into issues integrating into a new LMS.

Make sure that you are given a specific answer about how you can integrate this third-party content into a potentially new LMS.

3. Who Are Some of Your Clients?

Vendors will be happy to share their biggest clients with you – and that’s a good thing.

While vendors will proudly share that they serve big companies, you get an opportunity to understand who they serve.

If they target Fortune 500 companies, and you barely have 250 employees in your organization, how much specialized attention do you think you’ll receive as a client? How important do you think you’ll be to that vendor?

You deserve a vendor who is attentive to your needs. Make sure that their service is set up to cater to you, and not just their biggest clients.

Know the Features You Want Before a Demo

Be prepared when going into a demo. Thinking through what your company needs most with training will help you to see which features will be useful and which ones are just fluff.

During the demo process, pay attention and ask questions, and then take notes about features that you love.

Then, make sure that when you get a final quote, you are negotiating for a package that includes the features that you need in your learning technology.

With these questions, and a few more that you need answered based on your situation, you can be sure that you’re making a great decision when partnering with an online learning vendor.

For questions to consider when looking for learning content, download our free infographic:

Training & Development Industry Researcher | Derek researches, discusses, and writes about the impacts of employee learning on organizations and individuals. He regularly interviews L&D and HR professionals, sharing their insight on trends and best practices that help organizations create stronger training programs, and help to grow their employees and their business.