Our Favorite LMS User InterfacesJuly 17, 2014 by Erin Osterhaus
Learning management systems (LMSs) allow companies to better organize their corporate training programs. While a software system designed specifically to help companies create and track training programs is undoubtedly more efficient than using paper files or Excel spreadsheets (as many companies currently do), having an LMS with an easily navigable user interface can make the life of a corporate trainer even easier.
With that end in mind, we’ve compiled a list of our favorite LMS user interfaces (UIs)—in alphabetical order—to help you choose which software is best for your company’s needs.
Absorb LMS, as the company says, was “designed for humans.” Looking at the administrator control panel, you can see what this means. With an easy-to-navigate side panel from which you can manage and import courses, in addition to the ability to view and report on recent learner activity, corporate trainers can easily determine which employees have completed required training.
Absorb LMS’s administrator control panel
While this control panel is straightforward and easy to use for administrators, the real aesthetic beauty of Absorb LMS comes into play in its end-user interface. As the software is Web-based and accessible through any device with Internet access, employees can log in to their accounts from anywhere.
On the landing page, employees can navigate to view their “resume,” or transcript of completed courses; the courses they’re enrolled in; a catalog of available courses; and additional resources offered by the company.
Absorb LMS’s employee home screen
Once employees click through to their courses, they can view their progress under the course thumbnail on the left-side panel, as well as see which lessons they’ve completed (in green.)
Absorb LMS’s employee course screen
Another useful feature: the drop-down menu on the top right-hand side of the screen. From this button, users can easily navigate back to just about any location in one easy click.
Absorb LMS menu options
Cornerstone Learning Cloud
In addition to its suite of core HR software solutions covering recruiting and performance management, Cornerstone OnDemand also offers a visually pleasing and easy-to-use LMS. Called the Cornerstone Learning Cloud, this solution offers companies the ability to create media-rich content—using videos as well as pre-loaded templates—to create tests, assessments and surveys.
Employees are able to log in to the system, using their credentials, from any device with an Internet connection. They can easily browse available trainings using the navigation tool in the left-side panel, even sorting courses by subject or using the search bar in the top-right corner if they are looking for something specific.
Learning Cloud course listing
We especially like the ratings feature in this software. Each employee can rate the courses they’ve taken based on a five-star scale, as well as leave reviews. As you can see below, when an employee clicks through to view a full description of a course, reviews from past learners are available on the bottom half of the screen.
Learning Cloud course description
Finally, employees can view the courses they’ve completed from their profile, using the “Transcript” option on the side navigation panel. Not only does the employee transcript display the courses the employee has taken, but also the number of hours of training they’ve completed—a great way to add to encourage further learning.
Learning Cloud employee transcript page
Next up, Litmos. Another Web-based LMS, Litmos is accessible through any device with an Internet connection, which makes it easy for administrators—as well as employees—to log in from anywhere, at any time.
End users can view their current courses from the “Home” screen, and navigate to these courses in one easy click. Additionally, using the navigation panel on the left-hand side of the screen, employees can click on navigation icons to view current courses, additional resources and completed courses, as well as messages from instructors and other learners.
Litmos’ employee home screen
In the administrator interface, the navigation panel is carried through—and expanded. Administrators can view enrollment in current courses and the time employees are spending on these courses, as well as generate reports.
Litmos’ administrator reporting screen
For instance, as you can see above, administrators can see employees’ login activity for a set period of time, what courses are most active and which employees are logging in to them. From the right-side panel, administrators have quick access to a variety of reports.
Mindflash is another example of an LMS designed with the end user in mind. Its no-frills administrator dashboard allows trainers to see what courses are on offer, as well as which employees are enrolled in them.
From the same home screen, administrators can easily perform multiple actions—create reports, manage users and create entirely new courses.
Mindflash’s home screen
Course creation is where Mindflash shines. After clicking on the “Create New” button from the home screen, administrators arrive at a beautiful course dashboard. From here, using the tabs listed across the top of the screen, users can manage, arrange, customize and distribute the course to employees, as well as track their progress once they enroll.
Mindflash’ course dashboard
As you can see above, when creating courses, users can insert new slides as they desire, as well as organize the order in which these slides appear on the bottom half of the page—providing a useful visualization of how employees will navigate through the course as they design the curriculum.
Saba’s Web-based LMS, Learning@Work, rounds out our list. This solution mimics the feel of a social network, with an “Activity” news feed appearing on the home page. Employees can see what their peers have been up to recently, as well as post relevant content that may help others learn more about a given topic. Additionally, the “Announcements” panel on the right side of the screen allows trainers to communicate important information to learners.
Learning@Work’s home screen
Meanwhile, when learners click through to the “Me” tab listed on the header (which is carried through all screens), they can easily view all their essential information, using the navigation panel on the left side of the screen.
Employees can also see how far along they are in their learning plan, and are provided useful visualizations (at the top of the screen) to help them track their progress.
Learning@Work’s employee profile
This gallery represents our favorite UIs, but we’re always looking to incorporate impressive new interfaces, new market entrants or redesigns—so please feel free to send us your favorites, too.
Screenshots and image provided by vendors.