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Buyers beware

Fiona Leteney on the most common

mistakes when buying a learning system

Many new buyers are looking into the learning

systems (LS) market and being completely

overwhelmed by the volume and range of

options. That said, because of the recent

addition of system names like LXP, NGLE and

LEP, frankly it is difficult for even the seasoned

learning technologist to navigate the market.

These days, first-time buyers tend to be the

smaller organisations with hundreds or just a

few thousand employees; the larger

organisations are usually on at least their

second learning system or might have

multiples systems already. Even so, coming

back to the market after two to three years

things have changed enormously.

Fosway research shows that less than 50%

of current LS owners are satisfied with their

choice of learning system. This highlights that

choosing and implementing a learning

system is fraught with difficulties and a buyer

only has a 50/50 chance of getting it right.

So, what are the top five mistakes that we

tend to see?

1. Going it alone

Whether you are new to the market or have

been around it for years it has become too

complex to expect to navigate the purchase

of a LS in isolation. My recommendation

would be to put some budget aside to seek

independent advice - it's likely to be a small

percentage of the overall cost but can de-risk

the process.

2.Having an over inflated requirements

list

Ensure you know exactly what you need,

what are the drivers for purchasing the

system and leave the 'nice to haves' to one

side. Obviously, the longer and more

complex the list the more likely your budget

will not cover it. Don't be over optimistic on

what you might be able to use or manage in

the short term. It would be better to focus on

one area and prove its value before moving

on. For an extreme example, it would be nice

to have performance and talent modules but

is now the right time and is it actually the remit

of L&D?

Fiona Leteney

Senior Analyst

Fosway Group

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