What can be more important than education? We learn our whole lives and this is by far single most crucial process of all. As the saying goes, education never ends and there is no reason for it to stop because, frankly, the more you know, the more you discover there’s still an infinity of unknown to uncover. Learning Management Systems give the opportunity to discover more and spend less time in the process.
Fortunately, internet and modern technologies save the day, again. Internet is the home of all content but the amount and diversity can confuse. In order to avoid the distraction a plethora of e-learning platforms and online training/tutoring solutions exist. They all can be defined as LMS, and they make it possible to narrow the scope and focus on what’s important in case you have a group of people to educate in a timely manner. Read on to find out more about LMS and why it is a good idea to make your own LMS instead of buying a ready-made solution.
Mobile App Solution
Remember this: mobile first. Consider factory workers that don’t sit in front of their computers all day long. They need a solution they can use on their smartphones and/or iPads. And such type of employees especially needs detailed guiding because they engage with complex machines and are involved in sophisticated production/delivery cycles where they need to know exactly what to do step by step.
If a company introduces some changes or needs its employees to acquire new skills or assess their existing ones, a certain kind of guiding should be available on-demand while on the factory ground and not in a classroom. Keep in mind that the closer study is to the real working environment the better. Conclusion: your LMS should have a mobile version.
The functionality of the e-learning app either presents value to the end users, or not. As a custom e-learning / coaching / tutoring / training solution, it should be more than just a regular CMS. Otherwise, there wouldn’t be a need to develop your own software, since you can use Slack/eMail/Skype to organize lessons or easily subscribe to a ready-made solution. But they are often the same customized CMS systems, though they cost even more than making your own app. And you won’t be able to negotiate the terms or ask for specific features that you need. Think about that. Meanwhile, here’s a list of the features frequently included in different e-learning platforms:
- Engaging / interactive content or gamification features
- Content management (drag and drop)
- Content storage
- Video streaming (details)
- Profiles (of verified teachers, tutors, trainers)
- Integration with other services and 3rd party API
- Ability to customize and create tests / quizzes with time tracking features
Every e-learning platform has its pros and cons. Some of them are good but expensive, others are quite cheap, yet they deliver just slightly more optimization that the usual Slack or Skype. The features are everything and it is not just about getting more of them because the trick is in organizing and presenting them efficiently to teach students without confusing them.
“The secret of successful teaching is making the audience engaged and getting them interested”
The Best Examples
Coassemble is a great example of a well-tailored e-learning platform. This solution provides all the necessary tools to create e-learning courses and corporate onboarding programs for employees. This LMS has a subscription-based payment model with 3 kinds of packages. You may notice the astounding difference between the basic plan and others ($149 / $499 / $999) and that is done to just make you buy, though there’s no such difference in case you’re using your own software.
Essentially, the platform offers ready-made software that is used to create and distribute training materials and online lessons. The company also offers course designers that can make lessons for you. But did you notice that Coassemble doesn’t have a mobile app? Nowadays, you may afford quitting on the web version but to deny users a mobile version is a big no-no. And that is with paying something around $500 which results in the average annual cost of $6000. And you totally depend on the provider who can intentionally force you to pay more once you’re hooked on it. Isn’t it better to get $10 000 and start making the MVP of your own custom solution that will work for years for the unlimited amount of users? You decide.
Popular E-learning Apps and Custom Course Constructors
Developing your own E-Learning platform is a major business opportunity because, even though there are a lot of options here, in the long run most of them are more expensive to subscribe to than doing your own one. And it is exactly little details that are missed that may irritate you, whereas with your own custom E-Learning platform, you’d be able to change anything. Still, it’d be worth going through the options to know the market, so feel free to look at these examples:
How Much Does it Cost?
Final cost depends on: functionality and deadlines. Features to consider: streaming, content sharing, texting, quiz constructor, tests and others aforementioned. Doing it faster is more expensive because it means hiring a bigger team. The development process should be balanced and to achieve that the project’s business goals, marketing strategy, budget and promotion should all be well defined.
One of the most important points to keep in mind is the fact that making MVP first would be the best choice. It allows you to research the market to know the demand and also eliminate the risks of releasing a product that people are not interested in. Most companies start releasing their product publicly with the MVP version first in order to gather user feedback and quickly deal with critical issues before proceeding further.
Testing your software product in-house will never be as thorough as giving the end users to test it. You can launch your product in a certain limited area or release it for a smaller amount of selected users. Their interaction with your E-Learning software product will give you the space to improve before releasing final product to mass market.
If your employees need LMS, it is better to make your own than paying for a subscription to a ready-made solution. You can save costs and you may even distribute your custom solution as a product for others. This is a business idea. It can serve your company if you have complex on-boarding procedures and/or it can be a business of its own if you manage to promote your own custom LMS on the market because there’s a huge demand now for effective E-Learning solutions, especially those that are mobile. Give it a thought.
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