LMS, LXP Functionality U Will Need in 2024

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Do you feel it? The thrill to come? The energy? It’s there, all around us. And for a LMS, LXP, LP and yes the TDP, the functionality presented below is a definite you want to add to your learning system. Some are very obvious, plenty more are not.

  • What I am observing in the global learning landscape – I see a lot of learning systems, a lot. And globally I might add. Every time, I will see something that the light bulb in my brain turns on, and goes – yes, this makes 100% sense, so why isn’t everyone else doing it?
  • Trends and Trends – Being an analyst requires you to take a look at trends – whether it is enterprise or not, employee development referred to today as talent development or not, customer training or not, member education, and then tied across the landscape or not.
  • Use cases – what L&D, Training, HR and other departments/divisions, companies are seeking in their learning system. The majority of it is pretty obvious, although I always hear – “nobody offers that,” only to tell them, “yes, there are those who do.” Nevertheless, use cases is what drives the space from the buying perspective obviously.
  • Technology – You need to have a pulse on the technology of what is doable today, and how it will benefit or not – learning and training. For the masses. Folks loved to rave about VR, but I never saw it as a foothold due to all the items that were needed for mass adoption -which are the same issues that plague XR. Who wants to buy 200 XR headsets for $1,500 a piece, while we are gutting the L&D department? Anyway, technology plays an essential and key role in our industry – and has from the early days of the internet and a modem – with the start of online learning aka e-learning (the original and still main term).
  • Data. Lots of data. I love metrics, and data and what data can tell you. Data drives business. It drives your learning. Always. And it can provide you with a wealth of insight, if you are able to take a look at that data, extract it, and say okay it means this, and not that.
  • Generative-AI – A no-brainer really. The big question, what LLM will the vendor have in their system? Will it be GPT-Model (it is the overwhelmingly favorite with vendors today – ChatGPT is the prominent one -because it is free, GPT-Plus (formally known as GPT-4) is fee-based and can get expensive. Some are using Azure Gen-AI (which is really a chunk of GPT Model from Open AI). I do hope vendors look at other LLMs, such as Cohere, or Claude2, or the monster that will roll out, Gemini from Google. So many options. Anyway, for those that have it now, it is really an answer engine, whereas your learner asks questions, and the system responds – err the Chatbot – you can even see a retort with your content title, and in some cases, you click, and it shows up. There are vendors who are using the GPT model to create a learning pathway, whereas you add your assets; and your content creator tool generates an entire course – all text. Yuck. A few can allow you to add images, even video links. Still, a huge yuck. With DALL-E-3 (rolling out soon) and advanced data analysis (available now) – which are free plugins, there will be better opportunities to really punch it up and make it rock – but it is available only if the vendor has GPT-Plus (and whatever comes after it). The latest to be released for Chat-Plus and Enterprise ChatGPT (company) will be the ability to see, hear and speak – again big win, but not in the freebie version.
  • Bundled options – I’m a big fan of everything is included and if you don’t want it, you can have the vendor turn it off, or you can in some cases. The exception would be like performance management which should be an add-on. Why pay more for a content creator tool – when you will (okay, not instructional designers) want to use it?
  • Learner side for content creation. Why limit it to only your admin side?
  • Learner side reports – It is a page within the learner view. The admin decides what they can see. Think some analytics here. Learning intelligence shouldn’t be a one-way street. I’ve seen the leaderboard thing, but trust me, if I am in the bottom, this won’t motivate me. If I am not a A-Personality, this won’t motivate me to take more content. I truly believe that as Gen-AI improves – of course it depends on what LLM the vendor is using, metrics will be huge – and a big win. It can change so much.
  • Learners can move around their playlists on the screen – via the admin selecting this option. I see this option, but it is limited to the admin selecting the screen playlist view and where they go. Why can’t the learner do this – since they are the ones seeing it? There are a few vendors who offer it, I think it should be widespread.
  • Learning intelligence that aligns to your use cases. There are a few vendors that totally get this, but it is still a need. I saw a vendor heavily focused on customer training – yet their main analytical data point, was completion. Why? Completion should not be a key data point. What should? What content is not popular (filters). What content is popular. Usage data that drills down for example, is very useful across the board. Another system I saw, that plays in customer training and L&D (employees), listed the popluar and unpopular. It made perfect sense. If you are selling content, wouldn’t you want to know your revenue numbers? Wouldn’t you want to know projections of the content, and think about this – with gen AI, wouldn’t you want a stronger learning financial data? Well, the last point isn’t going to be here, until say 2025, unless a vendor finds the right LLM. However, when it comes to metrics, learning intelligence is the key, not BI, nor views – which tells you nothing.
  • Connections/Integrations – You need them as a buyer, the system needs it for various use cases, regardless of size.
  • Stronger skills data – what skills are they selecting, what skills are tied to the content – and usage, duration, and trend lines. More vendors are adding skill mapping as a component of the system, which you can expect to see a continuation. Metric wise around it? Needs to happen.
  • Streamlined. Find it, and utilize it.
  • Gen-AI in some form. It will be there, how useful is another question. Personally, a learning pathway based on a skill or topic, isn’t that impressive. Especially when these Gen-AI is not infallible, so you still need to verify.

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