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Is it Time to Add Customers to Your LMS?

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Is it Time to Add Customers to Your LMS?


2020 will almost certainly go down in history as a year of changes and challenges.  Many companies have struggled with transferring some or all of their operations from the office to a home environment.  User conferences, trade-shows and face to face training opportunities have almost all been eliminated.  Distance Learning has entered the mainstream vernacular.  Despite these cataclysmic shifts in our business operations we still need to support our customers and move our organizations forward.  It is necessary to adapt to current conditions.

It may surprise one to learn that more than half of Accord’s clients use the Accord LMS to train their own customers or business partners.  They have taken advantage of the power of the Accord LMS to replace traditional on-site training activities.  In the past, significant cost savings has been a primary driver behind digital learning but presently, reducing risk and keeping customers and staff safe has become the foremost priority.


Accord wants to Help

If you find yourself in a position where your training needs have changed or been affected by the Covid-19 Pandemic, the Accord Team is here to help.  Current clients should reach out to their dedicated Solutions Engineer to discuss the current challenges and explore ways that the Accord LMS can help.  The LMS has a remarkable number of features and wide-range of functionality.  Even long-time clients are surprised to discover methods not previously considered.

We are also happy to have an exploratory discussion if you aren’t a current Accord LMS client. Feel free to give us a call if you need to extend your training beyond your internal employees but your LMS may lack enterprise functionality or if you're unsure how to go about it.  We will work with you to develop a distance learning approach which works.


What makes Accord LMS Ideal for Customer Training?

Accord has continually offered enterprise capabilities which come included in our standard LMS offering.  Here are a few specific features from many we offer which help our customers extend the reach of their training.  A further summary of Extended Enterprise functionality can be found in What Is Extended Enterprise.  Our Team is ready to discuss additional options at any time.


Hierarchical Teams

The Accord LMS offers clients the ability to manage sophisticated Learner Cohorts.  In an employee training scenario you might create teams that look exactly like your company org chart.  This facilitates grouping learners for purposes of reporting, assignment and administration.  Team Supervisors can be given administrative authority which is limited to the learners within their office, department, division, etc.

Hierarchical Teams become even more desirable when faced with extended enterprise scenarios.  Accord clients who run B2B operations can create separate teams and administrators which represent each of their customers.  To an extent this is like carving out a private LMS for each customer. These LMS customer training teams can determine which online resources are available and trigger a wide-range of additional curated user experiences. Custom administrative options allow B2B operations to offer selected administrative capabilities to customer admins while limiting them to their own Team.


Learning Roles

Learning Roles are at the heart of the Accord LMS design.  Learning Roles allow LMS Administrators to automate LMS functionality based on their learning plan.  Training can be assigned and tracked based on virtually any type of profile property.  For instance, you might provide tailored employee training experiences based on a learner’s department, job title, license, or a combination of these parameters.  A support supervisor might automatically receive a completely different training program as compared to a sales associate.

This same technology can be used to provide LMS customer training based on product interest, products owned, or customer type. It is easy to offer a different training experience for a repair technician at a distributor who may sell one product line, and a salesperson at a dealership who sells a different product line.


Team Access Codes

User data in employee systems is typically imported.  These import files can be configured to assign roles and teams as part of the import process.  External training may require the ability for unknown users to self-register on your training portal.

Among other options, Team Access codes facilitate the ability to provide a code to customers which will automatically assign them to the proper team, as well as assign them to the proper learning role.  When they register on the site, they simply enter a simple text code which you’ve provided, and the system does the rest. 

Team Access codes can also be created as unique codes which allow you to limit the number of learners accessing your content.  Let’s say that you have a customer who has ten learners.  You could provide your customer with a single code that is limited to ten users or create a list of ten individual codes to be distributed to these learners.  The advantage of individual codes is that it allows LMS admins to see who has utilized these codes from their list.


Remote SCORM Management

Accord recently added a rather unique feature to the Accord LMS.  Accord Clients can send their SCORM training content to their customers who can then load this content into their own LMS.  Any SCORM compliant LMS will be able to import the Accord SCORM wrapper.  Accord Admins will be able to control the specific time frame which the course is available, as well as the number of times the course can be used.  The available licenses can be edited (increased/decreased or lengthened/shortened) as necessary.  This tool provides Accord Clients with the ability to share their course material with their customers while also keeping their proprietary content safe on the Accord Server.


Salesforce Integration

For an additional fee Accord offers a native Lightning Salesforce Connector app.  Please review our recorded webinar for more details. The Accord Salesforce connector allows Salesforce users to access their training directly from their Salesforce desktop.  It becomes an even more powerful tool for customer training.  The Salesforce Connector provides an option for Salesforce users to directly assign training to their Salesforce Contacts.  The Contact will receive an email with instructions for logging into the Accord LMS where they will find the training provided for them by their sales or support representative.


In Conclusion

The Accord LMS offers a host of features which facilitate the process of inviting your valued customers into your LMS.  This article names only a few.  We also offer eCommerce capabilities, custom child portals, automated reporting and more.  During a time when we do not have the option to engage in-person with our customers in conferences, trade-shows and other live training events, the Accord LMS can serve as an important tool in your virtual training tool chest.  Please do not hesitate to contact your sales team for a consultation.  They will be able to identify the specific features which will help you extend your training program out into the world.

For more detailed information, we encourage you to review our Extended Enterprise LMS White Paper.

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