The rapid momentum of technological advancement means that by the time we come to understand and appreciate current technologies, those same technologies are out of date and have been replaced by something new and less understood. Consider ERP systems and the shift happening now to next gen learning platforms that support enterprise learning strategy.
An organisation’s ability to learn, and translate that learning into action rapidly, is the ultimate competitive advantage. Jack Welch
Recently we helped a client transition from a large ERP to Birch Learning Platform. Some of the issues they had experienced and why they decided to change included:
- couldn’t link to their payroll system in order to create and manage user accounts
- didn’t cater for both internal and our external contractors – they had multiple systems which was additional cost
- uses old technology, they are not nimble enough to adapt to the way learning will be delivered in the future
- couldn’t manage competency management
- to access courses the learners had to move through up to 6 screens before they could launch the course they wanted to complete
- reporting was inadequate
- user and course structures were cumbersome and rigid
- performance of existing eLearning modules is compromised as the new system doesn’t support HTML5 or the latest browsers
- system doesn’t support new standards such as xAPI or suggested learning
- no local support even though they said they had an office in Australia
Here are 3 reasons why ERP solutions are compromising your learning innovation:
1. ERP Mergers with LMS
One of the trends we’ve seen lately in the digital learning world is the increasing prevalence of LMS providers merging with large software providers, generally Accounts or HR software to create ERP solutions for business that include a learning delivery component.
SAP merging with Success Factors LMS is an excellent example of this trend. The idea is that by combining multiple business relevant products under one banner, the client is able to purchase a one-off product that solves their every need. That might seem logical on the outside looking in, until real world economics, flexibilities of scale and business priorities take over.
For the vast majority of these systems, the leading application within the ERP is not the LMS. Most of these systems are put in to manage the company accounts or the HR function within the company and the learning management features are viewed by the people making the purchasing decision as a nice to have or “Value Add” in the deal, rather than a business critical component.
2. Little consultation with L&D
More often than not, its the professionals in L&D not being consulted about their requirements for the LMS before the new ERP system is signed off and installed, much less letting them have an active say in the appropriateness of the solution for themselves and the learners. This lack of consultation with L&D, much less an understanding of the growing importance of continual knowledge and skills improvement, often driven directly by learning, in peoples professional and personal lives, results in an LMS that at best detracts from the personalised provisioning of information and at worst just simply don’t work.
3. Functionality and feature poor
The learning functionality is simply not being maintained in an ERP. They are not learning specialists and lack an understanding of current standards. There priorities are other features of the HR system. They simply are not capable of performing at the same level as an enterprise digital learning platform.
So, what’s the answer?
People are your most valuable assets, supporting and nurturing their intellectual growth should be the priority when choosing a learning platform. Learning development and delivery needs to grow to service new needs and more importantly that the tools used to support these needs should emulate the general direction of technology. They should be:
- Easily Integrated
- Learner Focused
Birch Learning Platform was built from a partnership of trust between us and our clients. We understand the dynamic needs of clients. This partnership of trust coupled with the best technological solution, produces a unique and innovative business-critical differentiator.
The Birch Community continues to drive our Roadmap to ensure our clients never fall behind and their enterprise learning capability is the highest level. Get in touch to find out more about how Birch make learning feel natural again.