Change is hard, even when it’s for the better. When you are rolling out a new initiative of any sort, the benefits of the new way of doing things are not always going to be obvious to your employees. Whether the change is small or large, the way that you communicate the relevant information to your employees is crucial.

Imagine, for example, that your company is introducing a new set of quality control procedures. Lots of time and effort went into this update, and you have been assured that they will improve company outcomes.

Even more importantly, the new quality control procedures were designed to protect the organization from critical risks and audits. While there will be a bit of a learning curve, you are confident that staff will be open to the change. This is because of the obvious benefits the new procedures provide to the organization.

To introduce the new process, you have uploaded a comprehensive training module on the new quality control procedures onto the online learning management system that is available to all company employees.

But to your surprise, the new procedures are immediately met with concern and even strong resistance from many employees. What went wrong?

Why Move Beyond a Learning Management System?

Despite your best efforts, your training approach failed to address two of your employees’ most important questions:

  1. How will this change affect me personally?
  2. Can I easily access the specific information relevant to me when I need it?

A member of the sales department doesn’t just want to know the big picture. She also doesn’t want to go through a painstakingly long module that details how the new process affects HR and accounting teams. What she really wants to know is what this new change means for her department and her day-to-day workflow.

When she is crunched for time and trying to quickly close a sale and prepare for her next meeting, will it be easy for her to access the information that she needs at that moment?

When you upload all of your training on a learning management system and stop there, you are choosing a one-size-fits-all approach to change management. This doesn’t address the reality of a diverse workforce with different roles, concerns, and needs.

This is the reason that many employers are beginning to supplement a learning management system with a learning portal.

Learning Portal As a User-Friendly Layer

Think of a learning portal as a user-friendly website that sits on top of your management system (LMS). LMSs are often not organized in an intuitive way. Employees may have to repeatedly navigate through a clunky interface to reach the information that is relevant to them.

The fact that many LMSs aren’t optimized for mobile devices also means that employees who are frequently on the go may have no way to access resources when they need them.

In essence, an LMS is a database of training courses. A learning portal, however, is a gateway that guides learners to the resources, training, and other learning materials they need. The learning portal website can be hosted within an intranet or a dedicated secure learning platform. It can even be integrated with existing resources and link to content hosted in places like an LMS or a Sharepoint site.

How Can a Learning Portal Transform Your Training Initiative?

Learning portals can transform your training initiative by giving both employers and employees agency in the learning process. The following are some of the benefits that a learning portal can bring to your company and employees:

1. User-friendly

Learning portals focus on the experience of the learner. They enable learners to quickly find what they need when they need it. This makes it easier for everyone to access important resources. It also gives employees a sense of agency over their learning, leading to higher completion rates and application of knowledge.

2. Personalized

Learning Portals can accommodate the different needs of different roles and departments within your company. When rolling out a new process, there is often information that is more relevant to some roles than others. Learning portals allow you to create sets of personalized learning paths that will recommend content based on individual needs.

For example, the first page of your learning portal might ask employees to select their job title and then guide them to training and resources relevant to them.

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3. Flexible

As the learning needs of your company grow, your learning portal can evolve as well. Learning portals are flexible, allowing you to easily add content or additional learning paths as the need arises without interrupting the flow of existing content.

Additionally, not everyone learns best at the same pace or in the same way. Learning portals can cater to the diverse learning needs of your workforce by adapting to the individual as they complete content or suggesting content they should complete next.

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4. Comprehensive

As nice as it would be to have every piece of information organized into perfect learning modules, in reality, that is rarely possible. It can be challenging to figure out how to logically organize random resources like PDF manuals, videos, calendars, quizzes, feedback, and training courses all in one place.

A big advantage of learning portals is that they make it possible to integrate diverse information and resources without sacrificing usability. Learners can easily navigate to different sections or use a search function to quickly find what they need.

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5. Mobile-friendly (or even mobile-first)

Any learning system that is only accessible on a company desktop computer is severely limiting its potential to be engaging and practical. In the modern workplace, mobile optimization needs to be a prioritized feature rather than an afterthought. Employees are much more likely to engage with learning materials and apply their new knowledge when the platform is easy to access at any time and location.