The term “learning portal” is used liberally in the training industry, but what does it really mean?
By common definition, a portal is described as a gateway, doorway or entrance. Likewise, in computing it generally refers to a website that provides links or gateways to other websites. This idea affords businesses with the opportunity to consolidate relevant learning resources and tools into one location to accomplish a specific business or learning goal.
So, how is a portal different from a Learning Management System (LMS)? It’s a fair question with a fuzzy answer.
LMS’ such as NetDimensions Talent Suite are highly configurable and are capable of providing a portal-like experience using out-of-the-box functionality. However, organizations commonly configure their LMS as a one-size-fits-all solution to provide a superset of content and tools for many people within the organization, and covering many different subject areas.
A custom portal, on the other hand, provides a learning experience that targets a specific business goal, audience or subject area to deliver a focused, holistic learning solution. Today, we see that businesses are developing portals for multiple subject areas, including:
- New hire onboarding
- Sales training
- Service training
- Manufacturing training
- Compliance or technical training
- Extended enterprise and more