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What Do Small Businesses Really Need?
According to research, small businesses need strong processes and workflows which aim to control wastage of resources and streamline operations. Additionally, small businesses need employees who can fill more than one positions or people who wear multiple hats and juggle multiple roles all at once. But this is truly only the tip of the iceberg. Small businesses also must ensure that their products and services are on-par with their larger competitors, while also ensuring that their customer service or after-sales service does not fall behind.
This may seem like a lot for a small business, but the truth is that if a fledgling company is not able to keep their company up on all of the aforementioned parameters, they can and will easily be replaced by other companies who can. It’s also more than likely that the other companies that are looking to replace them, may have more resources at their disposal, making it further challenging for small businesses to stay in the game long-enough to make an impact and grow.
In short, a small business needs keep its operations in top order, train employees to take on multiple roles, ensure top-quality products and services, and keep their customers happy.
How Does an LMS Work for Small Businesses?
AN LMS for small businesses acts as a gateway to all the important resources that facilitate the online learning process for a company’s employees. It can store media files such as documents, podcasts, videos, power point presentations and other means of learning. An LMS is a time-tested way of providing training to employees in businesses all around the world. It is an easy way to train the employees and the workforce of the future, be it for a small or a medium-sized business.
But that’s not all, an LMS for small businesses can very literally become a cornerstone software for the company. Just like employees are expected to juggle multiple roles, an LMS is quite capable of being an all-in-one content hosting and accessing solution for small businesses.
From hosting training content aimed at helping employees understand and perfect their knowledge of processes and workflows to helping employees learn multiple new skills. From storing data-sheets and other documentation for employees to access whenever the need arises to becoming a cost-effective onboarding mechanism. An LMS can really elevate a small businesses ability to perform multiple tasks with relative ease.
Other Challenges that an LMS for Small Businesses Solves With Ease
- Maximizing Limited Training Budgets
Small and medium enterprises usually have a tight training budget. But tight budgets does not mean no or very little training. As a result, an LMS for small businesses can take away the burden from investing in one-time classroom-training activities and replace it with the ability to conduct repeated training without the additional costs. With the global increase in costs of transportation and other related cost increases like hiring a venue, an eLearning-based training conducted over a stable and robust LMS sounds like a better option for small businesses.
- More Productive in General
Training events usually take away a massive chunk of your employee’s productive time. More so when it’s a one-time activity because expecting employees to retain a massive information dump from just a single session is asking too much. Additionally, your employees may loose a whole day’s worth of productivity for an inefficient training effort. When it comes to training, most learners benefit from reinforced training formats which basically mean repeated exposure to training, there’s only one way that you can truly utilize this technique and that requires you to deploy an LMS.
- Fill Skill Gaps
Traditional training programs are tough for your employees to catch up on. Especially if they have missed even a single lesson. This knowledge gap can be costly for your company and bridging this gap by hiring another trainer can cost a fortune! With an LMS, employees can keep themselves updated, scanning through the mobile-ready courses at a pace that suits them.
Features of an LMS that Small Businesses Benefit From
- Mobile Ready Learner Portal: An LMS with a mobile friendly platform application is the best way to keep your employees updated and trained on-the-go. A mobile application makes training more accessible while accelerating the time to finish training.
- Cloud Hosting: Any data that you upload on to the LMS is saved to the cloud securely and can be accessed from anywhere (with proper authorization).
- Easy Creation of Certificates and Course Renewals: No point wasting time creating a printable certificate. An LMS allows you to easily renew courses for a single employee or a batch of employees with a simple configuration process.
- Support for a Wide Range of Media Assets: The LMS supports a wide range of media assets such as pdf files, word documents, power point presentations, videos, podcasts and much more. All of which can enhance as well as simplify the learning process.
- Badges and Leader Boards to Motivate Learners: An LMS also provides the option of giving badges and putting up leader boards to motivate learners. Badges can act as an incentive for the learners and also help the trainers keep track of their progress.
- Collaboration Using In-Built Message Center: Anytime one of your employee faces a difficulty understanding a task, they can use the in-built message center to communicate with other employees and move forward.
- Exhaustive Reporting and Analytics: An LMS makes it easier for you to analyze and sum up all of your employee performance reports with ease. These reports can also be used to monitor team-level or individual progress. The trainer can use this data to plan the next set of training requirements for the employees.
Key Benefits of an LMS for Small Businesses
- Faster Setup and Lower Cost of Operations
An LMS lowers the operational costs significantly in the long run by eliminating trainer’s hiring, travel, and accommodation expenses, classroom setup costs and much more.
- Significantly Reduced Knowledge Gaps
An LMS provides all your employees with standardized training and also helps reduce knowledge gaps. Standardized program delivery makes it easier to address a large set of audience, even if they are geographically dispersed.
- Improved Training Completion Rates
By allowing your employees to progress at their own pace at their own time, it ensures that employees complete their training without losing interest. It helps the learners complete the courses faster as well.
- Reduced Unproductive Training Hours
This technology also allows you to make the optimum use of your office time and reduce unproductive hours in training. Employees can wish to access the LMS only when they truly feel highly motivated to learn and utilize their time grow productively.
- More Visibility Into Training Performance
An LMS also makes it easier for the trainers to keep track of the learner’s performance. A bird’s eye view of the entire training activity helps the training facilitator to assess and determine the effectiveness of the training. This ultimately results in a better designed training program which is more suited to the learner needs. In today’s world with the ever evolving technology, an LMS is arguably one of the best tools available with the trainers to train employees for a dynamic workplace and LMS is even more important for small businesses.
Additional Benefits of an LMS for Small Businesses
Takes care of the cost involved in hiring HR Managers
When it is a small organization, employees play a variety of roles to complete different tasks which would otherwise require additional budgets and resources. It is not always a cost effective solution for a small organization to hire a HR manager who would manage the staff and take care of training. Hence, implementing an LMS might be the most apt solution in this case. You could set up some learning paths related to your industry and get your employees access to a course marketplace. The LMS would take care of all the training needs and you can establish your business without a pinch on your pocket.
Centralized storage for data and all training materials
An LMS enables you to store training data and other business information in one central location. It is better than storing data in several locations and multiple computers and then making it difficult to access them when needed. An LMS is the right solution when you need to access all your training data to train new hires and or make any updates to existing courses. This also implies that the chances of losing data are minimal with all data being securely stored in a remote server.
Solves the need for customized training
Even though your business is small doesn’t mean that you do not require customized training. Instead of building training from scratch, take an existing training from the LMS and personalize it. Alternatively, build a training path with a string of courses that cater to a broad range of skills and competencies. To make the process simpler, you can use tools like Inline Editing that have made the course creation process as simple as child’s play with the click of a few buttons and drag and drop inter activities.
Keeps up with compliance requirements
The most difficult part for a small business is keeping itself updated with compliance laws to avoid paying huge fines. But enrolling for a good LMS will ensure you have required access to a broad range of courses from accredited learning partners. You can simply enroll for these courses with a single mouse click. The best part is you will have access to the most current courses without having to spend time on tracking training programs from different external providers.
Reduces the need to outsource your training needs
Outsourcing seems like a good idea in the initial stages. However, it means that you are restricting your employees to certain programs that are only available in their areas. This implies they often do not end up being trained on skills or competencies that they actually lack in. Also outsourcing results in employees leaving their workplaces to attend different workshops or trainings. If you have a good LMS in place, you could easily have your employees access the relevant trainings from the comfort of their homes or workplaces, thereby saving time and money. Also, they could up-skill themselves by accessing courses that are relevant to their industries and daily job roles and responsibilities.
Easily track employee progress and growth
With an LMS in place, you can easily track your employees’ progress and personal development through results and reports. Such are available whenever employees participate in training programs. For instance, if you want to check on a particular employee’s development path, you simply log in to the LMS and access his reports and statistics. You then work with them to further fine tune their skills. The idea is to use him in the right business areas eventually. Additionally, the employees could also get an opportunity to work in new departments and expand their knowledge base.
Proves to be a cost-effective solution
The LMS is a cost-effective solution. It doesn’t require the use of any printed material or the physical presence of an instructor to impart training. You do not spend on the travel costs of an instructor nor do you worry about printing training booklets.
Abara LMS is an award winning LMS with a dedicated team of developers working around the clock to keep the system updated at all times. The Abara platform is available to license in all formats including an LMS for small businesses. Just get on call with one of our experts and they’ll be more than happy to assist you with the benefits of switching to Abara LMS. Contact us here Contact Form. You can also visit eNyota Learning if looking to build amazing custom eLearning courses.