When the time comes for your organization to implement a learning management system (LMS), having a thorough plan ensures seamless implementation, fewer issues, and is less likely to result in downtime.
With this in mind, we’ll explore everything you need to know to create an LMS implementation project plan, including establishing your goals, understanding your requirements, and the benefits of a well-thought-out implementation strategy.
LMS implementation is when your organization launches a learning management system to create a platform that employees use to access training courses. It’s a convenient and accessible way to help their learning and development. An LMS implementation plan is the steps your organization takes to ensure this launch is successful, on time, and on budget.
Many LMS’ can integrate with different platforms, systems, and databases, making them a fantastic and versatile tool to improve your employee development strategy. However, this also means that without a thorough plan, the implementation and integrations can cause time-consuming issues that lead to major disruptions.
As well as ensuring the implementation goes smoothly, having an LMS implementation plan has several additional benefits for your organization.
Below is a step-by-step guide your organization can use to create an LMS implementation and integration project plan.
As with any project, putting a team together with clear and defined roles ensures accountability, communication, and understanding. Depending on the size of your organization, this could be two or three employees for small businesses or five or six employees for larger companies.
Roles you’ll want to establish include:
Before creating your strategy, you must define what your organization wants to achieve through the implementation. Possible project goals include:
Once you have defined your goals, you’re in a better position to build your integration plan to ensure they align. The best way to do this is by establishing which systems you want to integrate with your LMS to increase efficiency, effectiveness, and communication.
Next, you should establish a detailed plan for implementing your LMS and integrating it with your chosen systems. This process includes defining your timeline, scope, and priorities, as well as obtaining the necessary permissions. You will also need to decide which approach best suits your needs. Doing so may involve APIs, coding custom scripts, custom middleware, system-specific tools, and web services.
If your organization has used an LMS before, you should migrate any existing data to the new LMS. To ensure this goes smoothly, back up your data so you can recover it should an error occur. Be aware of any differences in how data is formatted or standardized between your old and new systems. You’ll also want to migrate your users, permissions, certifications, and content.
A key part of this plan is how you roll it out to your workforce once the implementation and integrations are complete. Will you implement a partial rollout or a complete rollout? A partial rollout can make dealing with problems more manageable, but a complete rollout lets you see the positive effects of implementation much sooner. You’ll also need to create supporting documents to tell employees how the new LMS implementation and integrations will work.
Now is the time to implement your plan, ensuring each team member understands their responsibilities.
At this point, your test end-users should get access to test the implementation and integrations to ensure they’re working as intended. Feedback should be open, honest, and frequent, and IT administrators should be able to fix any errors or issues as they arise.
Once you’ve rolled out your LMS, you’ll want to evaluate its success. Integrating your LMS with other systems makes them more efficient and effective, allowing you to get more out of them in a shorter period. You’ll also be able to collate data in real-time.
Once the implementation has been rolled out to all users, you should continuously evaluate and amend integrations to make further improvements. At this point, you can measure your original implementation goals against the results. Have you met – or are you on track to meet – the goals you outlined in step two?
As well as using data to influence your decisions and whether or not the implementation has been successful, you should encourage user feedback. While data is useful, there should also be a balance between how it directly affects employees. This will ensure you can implement improvements going forward.
Once you’ve implemented your LMS and integrated it with other systems, you can get the most out of training your workforce.
Go1 offers thousands of eLearning courses to upskill and develop your employees, and Go1 integrates with hundreds of LMSs. For more information about how we can support your organization’s learning and development strategy, speak to an expert today. Or, you can subscribe to the Go1 newsletter to stay on top of all the latest L&D trends.