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Learning management system vs TMS… what’s the difference?

Learning Management Systems (LMS) and Training Management Systems (TMS) are household names in the education industry. Both an LMS and TMS can be extremely useful for training providers and can help you grow registrations and help you gain a competitive advantage. But what do these systems actually do, and do you require both? This article explores what each system is, what they do, and what you might need.

Learning management systems (LMS)

A learning management system (LMS) is a software solution which creates and delivers personalised learning environments for students. LMS’s deliver educational material in multiple forms and through a variety of activities such as quizzes, video content and self-paced material.

Why would you need an LMS?

If you are providing educational material, it is likely that with the use of an LMS you will be able to more provide the training more effectively and efficiently. This is because you can create more personalised learning experiences with multiple learning forms. Quizzes, video content, text or self-paced material all suit different types of learners. Face-to-face learning suits the needs of auditory learners, quizzes or example better suit kinaesthetic, while video presentations better suit visual learners. Self-paced learning will suit learners and individuals with limited time.

Your business might also struggle with providing paper-based learning material on the day of your training. With an LMS it is far more efficient to provide your material online. It can be accessed by learners online from anywhere, there is no need for printouts, activities and tests can be completed online.

Maybe you find it hard to assess your learners and report on their progress. Many LMS’s provide easy analysis and tracking of individual learner’s journeys and progress. Grades are stored on your LMS and reports can be generated quickly giving you insight into the success of your training operation.

Arlo provides a complete training management solution including an LMS, with its integration with Moodle. Moodle is the leading LMS globally, and Arlo’s Moodle plugin provides a seamless two-way integration.

Training management system (TMS)

Training management systems (TMS) are used by training providers to manage the commercial aspects of their training operation. This includes managing training dates and sessions, taking registrations and payments online, promoting courses and communicating with registrants. Quality TMS’s don’t only reduce manual administration, they give training providers a competitive advantage and grow registrations.

Why would you need a TMS?

TMS’s are just as important for training providers as LMS’s are. Often training providers provide premium learning experiences, with exceptional educational material, but struggle to manage the commercial side of the business. Keeping up with the numerous administrative tasks involved in managing a training operation can be difficult, leaving little time to promote and improve your offering.

TMS’s make the life of training administrators easier. Arlo’s training management solution will take your business to another level. Arlo automates manual processes and makes everyday tasks easy, but that’s just the start. Arlo injects innovation, gives you a competitive advantage, and provide you with the tools you need to manage and grow your operation.

Whether it’s managing cancellations or transfers or keeping everyone informed when event details change, Arlo automates once manual work. Arlo goes further by managing, marketing and delivering physical and online training services. It provides streamlined course scheduling, online registrations, invoicing and receipting, runs marketing activities, and manages client records and relationships.

Key comparisons

What organization use a TMS & LMS?

Both systems are used by CPD training providers, in-house HR teams, community education providers, membership organisations and those with a franchisee or supply chain network to train. TMSs are used by training operations that have grown to the point that managing their face-to-face courses with manual processes is no longer viable, and LMSs are used by training operation who want to deliver rich, online learning.

Who are the primary users of a TMS & LMS?

For TMSs, the primary user is course administrators who manage the logistics of instructor-led training. TMSs are also used by sales, finance, marketing, management and presenters. LMSs are also used by HR, content creation experts, course administrators and team managers.

What are the most popular TMS & LMS systems?

The top three training management systems are Arlo, Administrate and AccessPlanIt. The top three learning management systems are Moodle, TalentLMS and Litmos, but there are dozens more. In both categories, each system has its pros and cons. For example, Arlo is designed primarily for commercial training providers, whereas Administrate was originally designed for in-house staff training.

How much does a TMS & LMS cost?

Training management systems are usually priced per administrator license ($80-200 per month), plus a small cost for every registration on a course ($1-2). This is different from event management systems, such as Eventbrite, which charge the organizer a percentage of the ticket price (4-10%). Learning management systems generally, charge per learner ($4-10 per month). Additional costs can include access to a library of pre-built online courses.

So I need both? How do they work together?

Many training providers will need both an LMS and a TMS for running their training operation. However, you should be wary when employing two different systems. If the integration between them is poor, you will spend the majority of your time reentering data. With Arlo you forgo the hassle of two disparate systems. Arlo’s TMS with it’s Moodle plugin seamlessly integrates the two systems, with all data flowing between the two systems. Get in touch today to find out how Arlo could help you manage your entire training operation today.

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