Learning Management System vs. Training Management System: What's the Difference?

While a learning management system and training management system sound similar, they’re not the same thing. Both are tools that can help you run an effective training program. However, each is designed to carry out a different function. This article will explain the difference between a learning management system and a training management system so that you can choose the one that’s right for your needs.

What is a learning management system (LMS)?

As the name suggests, a learning management system (LMS) is a software tool that helps organizations create, manage, and deliver eLearning courses. Its main function is to deliver training content such as videos, documents, powerpoints, and quizzes. You can also use it to assign courses, monitor progress, and assess performance. Many organizations use a learning management system to deliver new employee onboarding material, safety training, or recertification courses, to name a few.

In a learning management system, the focus is on the student. Students who use the system will be able to view their training assignments, complete courses and tests, and track their progress.

What is a training management system (TMS)?

A training management system (TMS), on the other hand, is designed to handle the administrative aspects of training. Its main purpose is to streamline the complexity of maintaining an effective training program as well as facilitate analysis and reporting.

With a training management system, HR or EHS departments can manage training requirements, track training status by individual or department, and evaluate the effectiveness of the company’s training program related to a particular issue. The information in a training management system is also important to demonstrate compliance and prepare for audits.

Another way to think about the difference between an LMS and TMS is to picture a university. The learning management system is like the classroom. It’s where students receive instruction, take exams, and earn grades. The training management system, on the other hand, is like the university records & registration office. It’s where the institution’s administrators manage academic records, degree verification, athletic eligibility, course registration, scheduling, data analysis, institutional planning, and facilities usage.

Do I need an LMS or TMS?

If your main goal is to deliver training content to employees, you’ll want a learning management system.

Some learning management systems may have features of a training management system built in, but most organizations find that they need a TMS as well. You want to find a TMS that complements your LMS to make sure training is managed and delivered as efficiently as possible.

Fortunately, there are a variety of systems and tools available that can meet your needs. Many LMS and TMS work well together, so if you already have one or the other, you can connect them.

In many cases, a training management system is one component of a larger environmental, health, and safety (EHS) software system. The benefit of this approach is that it saves you from having a disjointed training management system.

For example, Perillon’s comprehensive EHS management software includes a training management module called TrainingTrak. Let’s take a closer look.

Training management in Perillon

In Perillon, training management lives alongside your other EHS processes. That allows you to manage training in context. So for example, you can analyze training effectiveness trends related to a particular organizational issue identified during an incident investigation. Or, you can assign training to an employee or group of employees as part of a corrective action.

If you have an LMS, you can easily connect it to Perillon to ensure training requirements are met. You can even choose to receive notifications if employees don’t complete their training requirements on time, which can help lower your organization’s risks.

To learn more, check out this article on the biggest problems with employee training tracking (and how to fix them).

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