Friday, December 23, 2011

2012 - The Year of the LMS

I guess I never thought I'd hear myself say that.  But something strange is afoot in the Learning Management Software market.  With the shift of the internet from 1.0 to 2.0, and beyond, it was easy to envision a world no longer needing the LMS of old.  So the question remains.  What does the new incarnation of the LMS look like?  Or does it just go away?

I'll admit that I've often ignored the LMS market. I've always been very interested in LEARNING, and management systems just never really had much to do with learning.  The early systems had everything to do with tracking, recording, reporting, and monitoring.  These are all business functions that need to occur  at some level and so these systems do serve a purpose.  I will readily admit that.  But rarely does an LMS have anything to do with instructional design.  But maybe that's about to change.

I don't have any links to stories that back me up on this, but I get a strange feeling that 2012 is the year we begin to see major changes in the LMS market.  And I'm not talking about the continuing mergers, and acquisitions in this space.  I'm thinking about a new breed of Learning Management Systems/Software. Perhaps someone figures out how to convert social engagement into tangible learning points, or other type of corporate currency that proves, or identifies, competency.  But, honestly, I'm just not sure what that means, or what it might look like.  I know some of you do.  Because I know you're out there working on it.

Maybe the LMS finally gets completely sucked into Talent Management software and course completions simply become part of your HR file...as many do already.  And maybe the big story will be that there IS no story: Every possible LMS either dies or gets acquired into HR or other management software.  And maybe what that means is that instructional designers need to start seeing the bigger picture.  If the enterprise is pulling together all these, once separate, software systems into something called Talent Management, then maybe there needs to be a hybrid study of Talent Systems Design.

What do you think?

And Happy Holidays!!!

9 comments:

Megan said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Megan said...

Happy Holidays to you too, Brent.

I can say that our LMS has enabled,us to actually manage learning- as in provide learning in a practical, quantifiable and sustainable way.

Our LMS partner has been generous, gracious, flexible, patient and powerful.

Long live the LMS!!!

Anonymous said...

Your comments are spot on: Learning management systems have nothing to do with learning. They offer an easy check-box approach with clear budget boundaries for companies that choose the path of least resistance.

Bartłomiej Polakowski said...

Changes in LMS market are inevitably. Lately I've seen a video from a conference where CEO of Saba was speaking about next generation LMS. The idea is that the "system" will be invisible for a learner. His actions such as taking part in online discussion or surfing the web will be monitored in the background and their manager will have the real view of their learning (not only formal part)

anieb said...

This is one of the best posts that I’ve ever seen; you may include some more ideas in the same theme about Elearning Development Software. I’m still waiting for some interesting thoughts from your side in your next post.

Jennifer Staley said...

@Bartlomiej has a great point, one that I agree with: the system will learn from you and your clicks and input. On the one hand that all seems a bit "big brother" (which at my core I am not about), but on the other hand how great it would be for an employee or student be able to have both their formal and informal learning captured then analyzed so that a holistic picture is provided for evaluation.

Brent Schlenker said...

I'm looking forward to some sort of interoperability between systems. Or at the very least a standard that allows students to take their learning history with them from job to job and school to school.
There must be a way for individuals to manage their own learning data. At least that's the dream, right?

Anonymous said...

Maybe its the time for open source LMSs to start shaking up the market place? At least you can get under the bonnet and extend it - even better if you share those learning back with the community.
See www.totaralms.com - a new open source breed of LMSs for corporates based on Moodle. Lowering the barriers to entry - who wants to pay all those licence fees?

Claire said...

Hi Brent!
I really like the concept of 'managing your own learning data' which could be used in endless ways from recruitment to project development,etc. I'd say, Imagine-Lms, compatibility, productivity. Maybe this will lessen post-grad blues.