Skins and skinning: 3 ways LMS configuration will enhance your learning success

Skins are a great way to optimize the look of your learning and increase engagement. This NetDimensions blog explores this LMS configuration feature.

The ability to change and enhance the appearance of your learning is a major advantage for your L&D team. Yet some systems still make it difficult to achieve a level of LMS configuration that makes your interface and courses truly look and feel like yours.

Fortunately, leading LMSes allow you to design interfaces that motivate learners to repeatedly revisit and explore your learning programs. One of the best ways to ensure your learning provides attractive, intuitive layouts that guide great learning experiences is through skins.

A picture of LMS configuration on a learner portal screen created by NetDimensionsBut what is an LMS skin? A skin is a custom graphical appearance that defines the way your LMS and pages look. While it’s possible to create an entirely new skin from scratch with NetDimensions LMS, we also give companies the convenience of a variety of attractive preset options. These can be configured in detail to meet the unique needs of each organization.

If you want to make your learning look inviting and modern, we’ve put together a few simple LMS configuration tips to help you get the most out of using NetDimensions LMS.

LMS configuration tip #1: Changing your homepage, navigation and layout

While most learners and L&D teams are familiar with the ‘my learning’ and ‘my career’ sections of their LMS, you can actually add any links you like to the menu structure. A few tiny changes to the navigation within a skin can make your learning much more approachable. For example, you might want to include an option to search or browse your learning as a separate item within your LMS menu.

Some of the world’s most successful companies, such as Netflix and Amazon, have changed the way people expect to find and consume content. Today’s learners demand a comfortable, personalized style, and changing your catalogue page menu is one way of doing this.

A picture of LMS configuration on a learner portal screen created by NetDimensionsYou can pick a different picture to suit each learner catalogue, and you can use personalized widgets within a knowledge center to enhance your courses. For example, these can link to social media and internal forums.

Your homepage sets the tone for your learners, and you can define a template for it with a specific layout and components. Good examples of the kind of elements you might populate it with include:

  • Company news
  • An RSS feed
  • A learner’s recent enrollments
  • Custom content within a HTML widget such as embedding a YouTube video, linking an image to the course catalog page or a course description page, etc

LMS configuration tip #2: use colors and branding to create clear learner paths

Our skins typically give you clear, easy navigation from the left-hand side of each page, but within that you can create different icon colors to make the layout of your learning even more vibrant and signpost people around your training programs.

A picture of LMS configuration on a learner portal screen created by NetDimensionsOne of the most useful aspects of customizable icon colors is the ability to clearly visualize learning paths according to color schemes. At NetDimensions, we understand that the graphical assets of your brand are unique and intrinsic to your company. That’s why our LMS configuration options help our clients to seamlessly add branding to layouts and make the most of features such as changing the border of each page in order to match organizational color palette and branding.

For example, our partnership with one major engineering support services organization created individual portal and skin branding, as well as a personalized learning experience
across the extended enterprise.

LMS configuration tip #3: add social and quick links for easier sharing and navigation

Social learning is becoming more popular all the time – and it’s not just a trend. Shared learning is directly linked to learning results within the organizations achieving the most success through their learning programs.

Adding a social link at the top of your page allows learners to share your content and engage in peer-to-peer learning. It’s a feature your learners expect to be made readily available, and capitalizes on people’s appetite for passing on useful content. For example,
92% of people who view videos on mobile say they also share video content with others.

A picture of LMS configuration on a learner portal screen created by NetDimensionsQuick links, meanwhile, are a fundamental way of giving learners a smooth journey around your pages, and ensuring they have a modern and engaging experience. These quick links could include:

  • Your company Intranet
  • Knowledge centers that are relevant to each learner
  • CRM and cloud solutions you use, such as Salesforce
  • Discussion forums
  • An email log-in landing page
  • An internal employee search page
  • An internal chat site

LMS configuration is a key driver of the success of your learning programs

Ultimately, the aim of any LMS should be to provide engaging, relevant learner experiences. The success of compliance training, in particular, can be significantly improved when learners feel confident and motivated to access and use an LMS.

Skinning and LMS configuration plays a vital role in allowing organizations to design stylish courses with a clear and logical style and flow, which is why they are very popular with our clients. If you want to try a sample skin or find out more, start by getting in touch with your account manager.

At NetDimensions, our team are experts in helping you create learning that helps your workforce to continuously build their knowledge. To discover how we can keep your LMS design fresh and engaging, contact us today to request a free demo.

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