In the quest to find a perfect learning management system (LMS), it would be ideal if free training software was available for a company or educational institution to use. Unfortunately, finding something free beyond a trial period is understandably unlikely. That said, understanding the different types of LMS options available will help you find the software solution to your company's eLearning needs.
Understanding LMS Software Pricing
The cost of an LMS is determined by a number of factors. A more robust system will cost less than something that is very basic. Also, the type of LMS platform that you procure will have an impact on the cost. Not all of the expenses are evident up front, so it's important to do your research and understand exactly what you are buying. An LMS that you have to toss and start over is never going to be an economical choice.
Types of LMS
The two types of LMS software commonly found on the market are proprietary and open source.
- Open Source: This is an option where you purchase the LMS software with open programming and complete it yourself based on your company's design. This requires an extensive amount of time and programming expertise.
- Proprietary: With this option, you purchase a subscription to a vendor supported LMS. Instead of doing the programming yourself, it's already completely done for you. You can personalize features of the LMS with your logo and other preferences. Beyond that, the programming and technical support is handled by the vendor.
If you only take into consideration the initial price of the LMS software, the open source option may appear to be less expensive. Once you add in the cost of additional features, technical support, and the extensive amount of time and resources for the programming, the cost will increase dramatically. With a proprietary, or vendor supported LMS, the cost is readily apparent upfront. Neither option is going to give you completely free training software, but you can find an LMS that meets your needs and your budget.
Litmos offers a free trial of their proprietary LMS. They have users from companies and educational institutions all around the globe. Take a look at this offer and see if the free training software trial can help you decide on an LMS for your needs.