Do you happen to know how many LMS vendors compete in today’s learning marketplace? You’ll be surprised to learn that there are over 800 solutions, ranging from global software companies to tiny cloud providers. If you’re looking for your first LMS, the choice can be awfully hard to make. But don’t panic! I’m here to help you with a list of the best LMS vendors.
A great variety of learning platforms led to a division of the LMS market. There are now LMS solutions for corporate and academic sectors, and for every industry and budget. In this post, I’ll go over the leading LMS vendors for different needs.
In order to choose which ones to include, I relied on my personal experience of working with a variety of training platforms. It will be apparent that my picks are largely consistent with those of the world’s most trusted and largest tech marketplaces, like G2 and Capterra, and even top business magazines like Forbes.
Best All-Purpose Corporate LMS Vendors
The key word here is “all-purpose.” It means that this type of LMS should handle all aspects of corporate learning. It should be suitable for employee onboarding, mandatory training, product training, and certification inside the organization, as well as for training channel partners and customers outside the company. Such LMS providers offer advanced user management, audience segmentation, reporting, and integration capabilities. My choices for the best all-purpose LMSs are:
- iSpring Learn (included in the Forbes’ “Best Learning Management Systems (LMS) of 2023”)
- SAP Litmos
- Adobe Captivate Prime
See a detailed overview of the best corporate LMSs →
Best LMS Vendors for Employee Onboarding
In these days of extremely high turnover (in fact, in the US, it’s 44.3%), it’s almost impossible for a large organization to onboard every new hire individually. And this is where a learning management system comes in to save the day.
A good employee onboarding LMS can save a buck and time for an organization. Here are some LMS capabilities that I consider must-haves for a platform that fits perfectly for new hire onboarding: a quick start that is essential for cloud-based LMSs with an intuitive interface, learning paths, a robust reporting engine, support of various types of content, and mobile-learning support. My choices for the best LMSs for onboarding are:
See a detailed overview of the best employee onboarding LMSs →
Best LMS and Examination Software Vendors for Employee Certification
Setting up and delivering a certification program is a fairly difficult task for most companies, as the process involves many aspects, including course development, creating and scoring exams, and tracking credits for completed courses and tests. Besides, it takes a good deal of time to manage learners. Using an LMS or examination software won’t remove all these headaches, but it will definitely simplify and speed up the process. There will be no manual effort involved – the entire flow, from registration to issuing the certificate, will be automated. My choices for the best software for employee certifications are:
See a detailed overview of the best software for certification →
Best LMS Vendors for Small Business
It is important for a small business to provide the best service/products and stay competitive. That is, of course, impossible without training and upskilling employees. A learning platform is a necessary tool for this purpose. But the ideal LMS provider for a small business will allow you to make both creating, delivering, and tracking your training easy. It means a system should have strong authoring capabilities, simple management options, and robust reporting and analytics features. My choices for the best LMSs for small business are:
See a detailed overview of the best LMSs for small business →
Best Healthcare LMS Vendors
Medical professionals are expected to keep abreast of the ever-changing healthcare environment and, therefore, continuously improve their professional knowledge and skills. Many healthcare organizations have already moved to e-learning that is implemented with the help of an LMS and have experienced its benefits. If you’re also taking this path and searching for an appropriate LMS, the list of features a learning platform should have includes learning tracks, an ability to host webinars, advanced reporting, and REST/SOAP API for integrating an LMS with ACCME web services and HR systems. My choices for the best LMSs for the healthcare sector are:
See a detailed overview of the best healthcare LMSs →
Best LMS Vendors for Sales Training
The time of classroom-based, lecture-style sales training has passed. An online option is a much better solution. With the right LMS, you can have your sales training program up and running in no time and help your sales newbies turn into top performers fast.
In fact, an LMS is able to handle a lot of tasks related to sales training, namely, provide new sales rep onboarding, deliver product knowledge and standards training, check which of your staff members perform better, and easily update your training materials whenever you need it. My choices for the best LMSs for sales training are:
See a detailed overview of the best LMSs for sales training →
Best LMS Vendors for Call Centers
Call center agents have to deal with different kinds of inquiries and various, sometimes unpredictable, customers. One major aspect of keeping your staff performing at its best is training. Enhancing their customer service and communication skills and educating your team on the details of the products and services can help your employees grow. This is where an LMS can offer a huge benefit.
A quality system will allow your call center agents to study at their own pace, easily manage even hundreds of learners and tons of learning materials, and provide tools to help assess employees’ performance. My choices for the best LMSs for call centers are:
See a detailed overview of the best LMSs for call centers →
Best LMS Vendors for Retail
The retail industry works on an enormous scale. A company typically has tens of thousands of staff members to train across different branches, cities, and even countries. Such organizations can also grow rapidly, so you need to pick an LMS provider that enables you to start small and scale up fast with no troubles whenever you need it. It should also be a system that will let you mimic your retail company structure and hierarchy setup and will help you cover all your training needs, from basic employee onboarding to training retail managers, sales assistants, and customer service agents. My choices for the best LMSs for retail are:
See a detailed overview of the best LMSs for retail →
Best LMS Vendors for Banking and Financial Services
Banking and financial industries have been early adopters of e-learning in general and learning management systems specifically. If you’re from this sphere and looking for a suitable LMS, first and foremost you need to choose a platform with strong system security that complies with the industry’s regulatory requirements.
It’s also essential that the LMS provides all the necessary capabilities for certifications – not only to certify your employees, but also to verify their credentials if required by an audit. Consequently, it’s important for financial enterprises to know exactly how employees are learning and what results they have achieved, so advanced reporting and analytics is what you can’t ignore when choosing a system. My choices for the best LMSs for the financial industry are:
See a detailed overview of the best LMSs for banking and financial services →
Best Academic LMS Vendors
The academic LMS market differs from the corporate one. The requirements of K-12, vocational schools, and institutions of higher education differ greatly from each other. For example, they use different scheduling parameters (holidays and exam times) and timeframes (semesters, trimesters, and quarters), track students’ progress through the grading system, provide grade books for monitoring attendance and assignment results, and create student groups for class projects and breakout sessions. My choices for the best academic LMS providers are:
That concludes my roundup of the best LMS vendors. I hope it helps you when it comes time to decide on an LMS for your organization.
Do you currently use any of the platforms I have looked at today? If so, I’d love to hear your thoughts and opinions in the comments section.
Is there a free LMS that you could recommend that I could use as a portfolio to showcase courses that I had built in BlackBoard and/or is there an LMS that I would be able to create a link to put on my website for people to view a course (not to actually take it)?