Canada Association of Tourism Employees

Migrating From Google Studying Instruments To A New LMS

Migrating from Google Learning Tools to a new LMS

It’s a little-known fact that buying a Learning Management System (LMS) can be prohibitive if your training department is just starting out, especially in a small to medium-sized business. Young departments often use cloud platforms and align them with the requirements of the jury. If your business uses Google, you might be using a shared drive that contains Google websites, forms, and worksheets. Additionally, you may have taken a page from the K-12 book and used Google Classroom. (If you’re using the Google suite of applications and haven’t used Google Classroom, then it is high time you did.) All of these cloud-based tools can help you build a robust, successful training program.

How can you successfully migrate your training program from Google to a new LMS? Slowly, methodically and with measured expectations.

1. Slow

Took time to create your program in google. Expecting a quick move from Google to an LMS is just not realistic. Expect the transition to take anywhere from 1.5 to 2 years, with most programs heading for the latter number.

Buying in from departments used to the training program formatted in Google may take some time to adapt. Expect kickback from stakeholders and be patient as you answer their questions and voice their concerns. Simply turning off permissions in Google and registering your learners in the LMS is confusing and overwhelming. If the transition takes 2 years, you should expect the rollout for your learners to take around 6 to 9 months.

Many older employees, both learners and trainers, will think in Google-to-LMS terms for a long time. Therefore, write the work aids, step-by-step instructions and internal manuals with some overlaps and analogous formulations. Subsequent editions of these documents may expire the analogies, relieving confusion until everyone in the company is fluent in the new LMS language.

2. Methodical

Draw the migration timeline. Make sure you record the progress, sticking points, and estimated time to resolution. Keep a master schedule and make sure all members of the content team are tracking and sharing their progress.

Schedule tutorials for your learners and senior management teaching them about the functions and features of the new LMS. Well-planned, distance teacher-led tutorials go hand in hand with a slow transition. Record acclimatization progress and consider a step-by-step rollout where different departments and groups move before other groups.

Don’t forget to plan how your team will deploy the new LMS to the rest of the training department. Just as a lawyer who represents himself makes a fool of a client, and doctors are the worst patients, coaches can be the toughest students. Develop train-the-trainer tutorials specifically for members of the training department. Record attendance and keep track of the number of times trainers log into the new LMS to practice using the new system.

During the train-the-trainer tutorials, the trainers’ questions are contained in order to first learn how the new LMS works. Often times, trainers and training managers want to ask “what if?” Questions before understanding the basic functions of the system. This interest in learning the upper limits of the functionality of the new LMS is laudable, but it can derail the tutorial.

In addition to tutorials led by remote instructors, record tutorials that may be viewed and re-viewed. Creating short tutorial videos on specific LMS features instead of a long tutorial also helps learners maximize their time so they can learn on the fly.

3. With measured expectations

Not everything is migrated seamlessly. Some features in Google Classroom are not available on your new LMS. However, there are usually other characteristics that make up for this deficit.

Within the training department, some trainers and training managers (many of whom were not directly involved in choosing the new LMS and migrating from Google) may have unfulfilled expectations. Just as many “what if?” Questions asked during the train-the-trainer tutorials are unproductive because the trainer did not know the basics. These unfulfilled expectations often result in trainers resisting the system and reluctant to move away from the system they know. While we may understand a degree of reluctance, it is to be expected that all members of the training department will be proficient in using the new LMS by X-Date.

Even after the migration is complete, Google Tools permissions will be disabled and your trainers and learners will think in LMS terms rather than Google-to-LMS. Do not delete your old program. Think of the training infrastructure created in Google as the foundation. The new structure you are building cannot stand without the foundation.

If a basic analogy doesn’t help, think of the program created in Google as a backup system. If for any reason you no longer need to use the LMS, you can reactivate the permissions in Google Tools. You may not have everything up to date, but you can always create new content and resources faster if you already have a framework in place.

If the LMS is well managed, the LMS company you choose should refine existing features and develop new ones. Keep your tutorials and job aids updated so everyone, from trainers to learner, has the best possible chance to maximize the new LMS functionality.

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