You should choose your learning management system with care. After all, it will be the foundation of your association’s education strategy for years to come. Take this decision lightly, and you’ll pay the price. But if you make the right choice, you’ll reap the rewards of a remarkable online learning platform.
Elevate isn’t the only learning management system out there. But it could be the best LMS for you. Here’s why:
A World-Class Learning Management System
From the beginning, we built Elevate to meet the needs of associations and non-profits alike. Instead of building an LMS off of another platform, we built our LMS from the ground-up, meaning we have full-control over the features.
Unlike other companies that built an LMS for another industry, our LMS is purpose-built for associations by associations. We listened to our clients and created a full suite of flexible features to meet any organizational need.
From course creation, to credit earning, to in-depth reporting, Elevate LMS covers the entire learning cycle and more.
A Webinar Management Tool
Early on, we recognized that webinars are a vital part of many education programs, so we built a webinar management tool right into the LMS.
Instead of managing your webinars through a third party, Elevate lets you manage, deliver, and repurpose your webinar content within the LMS. Our learning management system serves as your one-stop-shop for all your webinar needs, from registration, to content delivery, to recording management.
*Bonus Tip: If you are feeling overwhelmed by your webinar program, our expert team of event producers can take the production off your plate.
A Virtual Conference Platform
During the COVID-19 pandemic, the convergence of education and events accelerated at an unprecedented pace. By leveraging an LMS, organizations ensured that their content became enduring—enabling reselling, recertifying, and marketing opportunities for years to come.
But manually moving content from the virtual conference platform to am LMS takes too much time and effort. With Elevate, you can seamlessly run a virtual conference and immediately integrate it into your LMS. All of the customization of a conference site fully integrates with the flexibility of your online learning platform.
A Revenue Generator
Other learning and events platforms flaunt their registration ability as a way to make your organization money. We can easily monetize your content through our robust registration system, but that isn’t the only way to generate revenue. After all, we know many of our clients offer their courseware free of charge, so we empower you to generate revenue in other ways.
Through Elevate, you can create a sponsor hall, tiles, and pages for paying sponsors of your learning program. Our content delivery tool also provides you an opportunity to sell sponsorship and advertisements to garner more traction.
Built to Expand with You
Many of the learning management systems on the market are built to accommodate organizations of a particular size. This rigidity eventually forces you to move to another LMS—requiring you to repeat the arduous process of finding, setting up, and implementing another LMS.
But not Elevate. Instead of limiting you, our LMS grows with you. We know how quickly organizations grow, and how time-consuming implementation of an LMS can be. We ensure you only have to do that once. Elevate is designed to flex with your organization and accommodate it’s growing needs.
Create Enduring Educational Experiences with Elevate
Elevate is more than just an LMS. Our award-winning online learning platform helps hundreds of nonprofits and associations to integrate events, generate revenue, and grow along with their education strategies.
2020 has been a year of great successes and great challenges for everyone. CommPartners is no exception. With the sudden closure of place-based events due to COVID-19, we had to quickly meet our Virtual Conferencing clients’ needs while still implementing LMS’ and providing event services. So I asked some CommPartners staff to reflect on 2020 to see what we’ve learned, how we’ve grown, and if any highlights come to mind:
Julie Ratcliffe, Content Production Specialist: What are some highlights from 2020?
Kendra Matarozza, Director of Online Events: If I’m being totally honest, I think my favorite part of the year was getting glimpses into my colleague’s home life to see who is really running the roost. I’m going to fill you in on a secret—the toddlers and small children dominate, and it’s hilarious. I loved seeing them pop up on screen or doing crazy things in the background. They unintentionally bring levity to any situation and brighten the day.
Jill Norris, Project Manager Virtual Conferences: A highlight for me was witnessing the emergence of new technologies and features for the deliverance of online education and networking. Existing platforms such as our own were put on a fast track to release new features to adapt to the abundance of events and needs for delivering education and replace face to face networking opportunities.
Rich Finstein, CEO: The primary highlight for me was seeing our entire team overcome personal challenges from the pandemic to meet a dramatic influx of client requests. Many of us had to work 12 to 15 hour days. One client, in particular, was Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, or LLS. LLS produced six virtual conferences and will be doing six more in the spring. They were able to reach patients and those impacted by the disease with valuable research information and guidance from top clinicians in the field. We received notes from attendees thanking LLS for making this information so accessible.
JR: What are the tiny moments that made you smile?
JN: Haha, not sweating the small things like fur-babies or kids crying in the background when someone was presenting. Pre-COVID-19 that would’ve been a catastrophe to a live online event, and editing hours would need to happen in post-production. Now it’s just “human” and accepted. #2020
JR: How do you think this year has shaped CommPartners as a company?
RF: Since we have years of experience managing virtual conferences and livestream events, we were a company many associations turned to when COVID-19 hit. We supported hundreds of virtual conferences from March to December. While moving from place-based events to virtual was a significant change for many organizations, we saw a secondary impact. Organizations needed to think more strategically about their approach to online learning. Due to this realization, we saw a dramatic uptick in Elevate LMS placements. The synergy between Elevate and online events helped our clients with a strategic approach versus simply an event to event type of offering.
JR: Virtual Conferences were a primary service CommPartners offered this year. How did it feel to provide this service during an uncertain time?
JN: Honestly, I felt very fortunate to be in this line of business this year as many others faced so many unknowns, especially in the events industry. And it was nice to be able to provide our knowledge of virtual education to so many who had never even thought about offering this for their organization. I think my friends and family members finally understand what I do for a living.
JR: What have you learned about yourself, your team, or CommPartners this year?
KM: This year I was amazed at the resiliency of all of my coworkers. This was a challenging year professionally and personally with the madness, but it really highlighted the importance of our internal relationships. I also came to realize that there is this familial bond that forms when you see people on a daily basis, for years on end- it was nice to see how we all cared for one another and really worked to back one another up, jumping in wherever was needed.
RF: CommParters has been around for over 20 years. We have built a reputation for excellent customer care and integrity in how we support our clients. When COVID-19 arrived, organizations were seeking a company they could trust. We received over 1,000 organizations reach out to us in March and April. This made me realize that our years of investing in our clients and the reputation we created made us an obvious choice during the initial months of the pandemic. We needed to match client faith in us with a successful conference experience. While you always look back and think of things you could have done better, as a whole, we feel we came through for our clients.
CommPartners is ready to take on 2021 and continue meeting our community where their needs are, providing outstanding online education services. If you’re interested in learning more about CommPartners’ services, please contact Meghan Gowen at email@example.com.
When running a marathon or 5K, there is usually something that pulls you towards the finish line. Something that keeps you going to the next mile when you feel like giving up. Something that makes you want to do it all over again.
For some, it may be the health benefits; for others, it may be the thrill of the sport; maybe it’s the satisfaction of completing something. No matter what it is, you receive a symbol of your accomplishment when you finish the race. A medal. That symbol tells you that you worked hard, completed a task, and now you have a tangible token to share with your community of your success and skill.
Learners need the same thing. As they work their way through content, you may consider using digital badges as encouragement and rewards for a job well done. Incorporating badging into your LMS is a great way to motivate membership while validating their accomplishments.
Before you offer badges to your learners, check out our “do’s and don’ts” of badging:
DO implement a badging strategy: Handing out random badges is not a good idea. Make sure there are criteria for each learner to meet to earn a badge. That criteria should include course structure, pre-requisites, who approves the badges, who is eligible, etc.
DON’T forget to pair with a trusted badging expert: CommPartners integrates with BadgeCert to provide our Elevate clients with badging credentials. Badges are only as good as the organization providing them. BadgeCert issues 100% verifiable badges giving your achievements standardization and validity.
DO use it a motivator: At the heart of badging is motivation. By rewarding your learners’ achievements, they will want to continue learning and achieving.
DON’T make it too easy: Create skills-based (soft or hard) badges for learners in specific fields or job-tracks. Create badges to strive for!
DO make badges shareable: Badges are evergreen, meaning they stay with a leaner from position to position. Posting badges on social media is an excellent way to share expertise with their network while receiving colleagues’ endorsements.
DON’T over-badge: According to Ginger Malin, Founder and EVP of BadgeCert, “you want to be careful not to ‘over-badge.’ We suggest as a rule of thumb that badges should be assigned for either course completion or for modules that can stand on their own. This way, even if an individual does not want or need to initially share the badge, they would have a verifiable digital credential to share when desired.”
DO encourage LMS exploration: Award learners with a badge for exploring your LMS site. They will benefit from gaining an intimate knowledge of the site when they begin their learning journey.
Whether badges are shared on networking sites or within the LMS, digital badging provides your learners with the motivation to continue their professional development path while expanding their expertise from LMS content. To learn more about Elevate LMS or how to incorporate digital badging into your LMS, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Imagine going to Amazon to purchase a new book and there is no search feature. You have to scroll through every single item Amazon sells until you come across the book you wanted. Phew, nightmare over. Not only does Amazon have a search bar, but it anticipates what you’re looking for, recommends what you might want next based on previous purchases, and items are organized into categories so you can easily search for what you’re looking for on your own.
Continuing our more in-depth look into CommPartners, CEO, Rich Feinstein’s The Evolution of the Association LMS: 10 Considerations for 2020, let’s talk about organizing content. Whether you’ve just implemented your LMS and you’re starting fresh with your organization system, or you’ve had it for years and you’re learning catalog could use a critical eye, a good taxonomy strategy is essential.
For many associations, their LMS is the primary source for education and connection since the pandemic started and their digital assets are growing. Creating a simple way to search and find content is essential for learners. There are several taxonomy and organization strategies to optimize searching and presentation of content:
“The more robust your taxonomy is, the better you’re empowering the LMS to meet your goals and changing goals,” Arianne Urena, Elevate Implementation and Project Manager. Arianne recommends establishing a taxonomy strategy as your first step when implementing your LMS. Consider these questions when developing your strategy:
What content is offered on your site? Make a list of everything.
What is the priority of each offering? Start with the essential items for your learners and then add in the supplemental pieces.
Which assets are revenue generators? Mark those.
Who is your audience? Are they familiar with an LMS? New members? Old members? How are they accessing the LMS? Member role? Job type? Apply the necessary categories.
Use case: How will they navigate? How long does it take for them to find an asset? How do you correct any navigation delays?
What is the ideal layout for your content on your LMS? What is the first thing a learner sees on the site? Second, third, fourth?
Once you’ve organized your content and you’ve established a robust taxonomy strategy, you can apply other organizational methods:
One-click imagery or terms: Make finding content a snap by organizing it into categories and requiring only “one-click” to navigate.
Keyword search: Include a keyword search bar on your LMS site so learners can search through your well organized content library.
Personalized learning paths: To help your learners get started on their learning journey and navigate through all the content options, provide them with personalized learning pathways based on career paths, member roles, etc. with the individualized attention of an “advisor” from your staff. To learn how to create these paths, join us for our upcoming webinar Creating Personalized Learning Journeys.
Self-Assessment Quiz: This is your chance to become the advisor. CommPartners’ Elevate has a new feature that allows administrators to gauge competency and make personalized content recommendations to learners based on their quiz results. Click here to find out more about the self-assessment quiz feature.
Creating a simple and easy-to-follow path to content within your LMS will eliminate frustration while encouraging your learners to register and keep coming back for more. To learn more about organization options for your LMS or Elevate, contact Meghan Gowen at email@example.com.