Registration for Inspire 2024 is now open!

Register now

How to Use LMS Analytics for Better L&D Insights

• 6 min read

The world moves so fast today. Things are always changing, and it’s up to us to ensure we stay updated with the latest developments in our field and provide the right learning programs to help our employees do the same. From onboarding and corporate training programs to upskilling and professional certifications, learning has become a constant part of professional development. But how confident are you in the efficacy of your training programs—and how can you be confident without insightful LMS analytics?

Consider: Are your employees’ learning outcomes where they should be? Is your training process as fast and efficient as possible? Are you also tracking learner progress and outcomes and making changes to improve them?

Constant learning and training is vital. However, meta-learning is just as important. Meta-learning—learning about learning—will help you ensure that your learning and development (L&D) efforts are working. The right learning management system (LMS) can also help by providing you with the LMS analytics you need.

Keep reading to learn:

  • What LMS analytics are
  • The insights you can learn from them
  • What kind of LMS analytics matter most
  • How and why to use them

Learning should be a life-long endeavor. But that doesn’t mean your training programs should take forever to learn. We’ll help you implement the ideal system for creating learning programs that work.

What are LMS analytics?

LMS analytics involves the process of gathering, analyzing, and reporting on learning data. LMS analytics facilitate more effective, data-driven decision-making. Knowing everything you can about how your in-person and/or online learning programs are working helps you to understand things like which modules are effective and which aren’t so you can make improvements.

Types of learning analytics

As always, what you learn depends on what information you have. Different types of information reveal different things. LMS analytics is very useful. However, first, you must ask the right questions if you hope to get meaningful answers.

Each kind of learning analytics answers a different type of question. The deeper you look, the more you’ll learn. Here are the different types and what each one can teach you.

Descriptive analytics

Descriptive analytics are the most surface level. They tell you what happened but no other details. Nothing more, nothing less. Descriptive analytics can help you see what’s happening and identify any patterns, trends, and correlations that may be helpful.

Collecting data on course completion rates to find out that 75 percent of those who started your course went on to finish it is an example of descriptive analytics.

Diagnostic analytics

Diagnostic analytics follow up on the information you gathered from your descriptive analytics. They tell you why something happened. This provides insight into the cause-and-effect process.

It’s great to know that 75 percent of your learners complete your learning program. However, that information alone doesn’t help you very much, right? That’s where diagnostic analytics come in.

You have the symptom, a 25 percent learner drop-off. Now, you need the diagnosis. Looking deeper to perform a diagnostic analysis can tell you that most of them stopped in the same place of a particularly difficult module.

Predictive analytics

A predictive analysis brings in the big guns. Algorithms and statistical predictive models help you use the current and historical data you already have to see into the future. In the wise words of Winston Churchill, “The farther backward we can look, the farther forward we can see.”

That sentiment holds true. Also, as Mark Twain said, “History doesn’t repeat itself, but it often rhymes.” While no prediction can be 100 percent accurate, looking at the patterns of the past can show you the most likely road ahead. For example, if you keep that course as it is, that completion rate will likely hold steady.

Prescriptive analytics

Prescriptive analytics tell you what your best options are moving forward. They tell you what you should do to improve your learner outcomes and get that course completion rate up.

You already know that course completion rates will likely stay the same when you do nothing. Prescriptive analytics tell you what changes to make to improve them. This can include:

  • Making that module smaller
  • Adding context to help them learn it more easily
  • Providing other early interventions to help them make it through to the end

What can you learn from LMS reporting?

Learning data analysis and LMS reporting can provide you with a lot of actionable insights into your current L&D process. This can help you make informed decisions about your learning process, which makes online training more effective.

Here are ways LMS data can help you:

  • You can improve your course content to create a better learner experience.
  • Real-time data analytics allow you to make continuous improvements and immediately see the effects.
  • Better learning content can be created using predictive analytics based on historical learner activity.
  • In-depth analytics features allow you to improve your learning paths to be more effective and get your group of learners to full competency much more quickly.
  • Get valuable insights into where your resources are most needed to ensure you focus on initiatives that provide the highest return on investment (ROI).
  • Personalize user experiences for how they learn best by creating individual dashboards that help each learner excel.
  • Use valuable data on learner competency to ensure everyone understands all compliance mandates.

The right LMS platform can help you perfect your e-learning courses in many ways to get the best results as fast as possible.

The most crucial learning analytics metrics to track

LMSs provide a lot of data. However, not all metrics are created equal. Here are some of the most important LMS analytics metrics to watch for the best results.

Learner retention rate

Learner retention rates measure how many people stick with your learning program over a set period or from enrollment to completion. This can help you gauge how useful your learning platform is.

Learner engagement rate

The learner engagement rate is the percentage of users actively engaged with your lessons. In person, it would be measured by how many students do things like ask and answer questions or participate in discussions. For online courses, this can be measured in several ways, including time spent, modules completed, or submissions received.

Completion rate

The completion rate measures the portion of learners who finish all mandatory lessons, modules, assignments, or other activities. While this is similar to the retention rate, it goes a step further by only counting people who complete every part of the course rather than those who keep using your training program at all.

Achievement rate

The achievement rate focuses on the number of students who met the requisite goals you set for them. That can be earning a specific grade, completing a specific number of tasks, or exhibiting competency in another way.

Knowledge retention rate

Your learners’ knowledge retention rate can be assessed using a test of some kind. This can be done right away or a set time after completion to gauge what their knowledge retention rate is over time. That can be useful for deciding when refresher courses may be needed.

Time to complete

The amount of time learners need to complete your course in part or in full can be very helpful for understanding how quickly you can get learners up to speed. The shorter the completion time (without negatively impacting metrics like knowledge retention rate), the better. You can also use this to show stakeholders that your training is effective and efficient, maximizing their return on investment.

How personalizing your LMS reporting leads to more powerful insights

Your organization will have vastly different goals than organizations in unrelated industries, right? Let’s say you’re a tech company. So, do you think you should do things the same way a retail store or restaurant would? Probably not—you have entirely different needs, goals, and processes.

So, if you wouldn’t run your business the way a company in a completely different industry would, why should your LMS reporting dashboards look the same? The more personalized your LMS analytics can be, the better. That way, everything can then be tailored to your needs.

Using LMS analytics tools to iterate and improve your business

LMS analytics can have a profound effect on your learning experience to help users get the most out of your programs. You can use the data insights provided to iterate your courses and get the best possible outcomes. However, that data can be used in other ways too.

The right integrations ensure that all your data is available in one place to help you create visualizations of metrics and progress over time, to help validate your strategies, and so much more. The right integrations and APIs can connect all your software tools and eliminate data silos.

Docebo is an LMS platform that provides everything you need to create courses, track progress, understand your weaknesses, iterate to make improvements, connect all your data and software, and much more.

Docebo provides the proper foundation for continuous learning and improvement. We want to set you up for a successful future and give you all the tools you need, including AI, to help you do more without needing more time, resources, or people.