If you’re using a learning management system (LMS) to support your training activities, whether you’re an instructor, manager, or the head of the L&D department, you know how important it is to collect training data.
At the same time, there are many types of reports you can use to track training progress, set learning goals, and evaluate the ROI of your training programs, so it’s also essential to know exactly what they do.
You can measure anything from the number of attendants a course has to course completion, learners’ activity on the platform, their results, and more. All these insights will help you tailor your training to your workforce’s needs and preferences. Learn more about the different types of LMS reports you should use to ease and optimize training programs.
Why use LMS reports in the first place?
Training reports are just as important for your L&D department as financial forecasts are for the finance team— they help you move forward and drive business growth. LMS reports enable you to:
- Make data-driven decisions that will boost your training ROI;
- Understand your employees’ strengths and weaknesses;
- Constantly adapt your training to your staff’s real needs;
- Improve compliance training and boost its engagement;
- Right-skill employees based on their competencies and job profiles;
- Set clear organization and individual learning goals and track them;
- Save money by giving up unnecessary training activities.
Read more: Using LMS reports to find pain points in the company’s e-learning programs
Types of LMS reports your e-learning platform needs
There are two main report categories that LMSs offer to businesses:
- Built-in reports;
- Custom reports.
The first types of LMS reports are ready-made ones with a fixed structure and include specific data the system immediately retrieves upon request. Built-in reports come in different formats and can include a wide range of training-related information, such as:
- Course attendance and completion statistics;
- Assessment status and results;
- Organization statistics;
- Course revenue statistics;
- Compliance training data.
These reports are already available in the LMS and don’t need further tweaks or filtering. Users can simply click on the type of report they want, and the platform will generate it within seconds. Then, they can view or download it.
Custom reports contain the same type of information you find in built-in reports. The difference is that users choose what data they want to get.
For example, a trainer might not want a generic report with all the learners in their training group and their course attendance, scores, or missing work. They can apply filters to eliminate certain fields from their reports or add new ones. For example, they can get a combined report that only shows the attendance stats of one group of trainees and their course results. They can also sort the report to list learners in the order of their results.
These types of LMS reports are very practical when an administrator or trainer needs quick access to specific training information.
The 12 types of built-in LMS reports that can streamline corporate training
Learning platforms can boost employee productivity in many ways. One of them is by offering reliable, real-time built-in reports that reveal essential organizational and training data. These ready-made reports that only require a few clicks to download can keep stakeholders informed about various aspects such as:
- Training attendance;
- Course completion rates;
- The make-up of their teams and workforce;
- Policy and compliance-related documentation.
Built-in reports are available at any time. Users can generate as many as they need, save them, see a report’s history, set up a recurring report or schedule a report so they can receive it at a specific time.
The Reports catalog shows a list of all the relevant built-in reports that instructors, managers and administrators can generate.
Here are some of the main built-in reports LMSs offer.
1. Site statistics
Site statistics reports help you understand how people interact with your LMS. These are generic reports that can include a wide range of items such as the number of learners, instructors, courses, organizations, enrollments, active courses, assessments, files, etc. These reports offer a quick overview of your training efforts and their scale.
Site statistics offer a comprehensive overview of your e-learning platform.
2. Organization statistics
Your company is probably divided into several departments. These can be represented in the LMS as different organizations. You can create as many organizations as necessary. Organization statistics reports will show you a detailed breakdown of each organization’s administrators, instructors, learners, managers, courses, groups, and more.
3. Revenue reports
Revenue reports are a must if you sell courses to third-party entities outside your company. For example, many businesses choose to sell courses to franchisees or clients, which can be a great way to increase your revenue. These reports work together with other e-commerce LMS features. They basically show you how many courses you’ve sold, when, and how much revenue your courses generated.
See important statistics related to online course sales.
4. Course enrollments
These types of LMS reports include the number of learners who enrolled in a particular course by a specified date. They help trainers realize if their courses will reach the desired audience and whether they need to send more invitations or organize more training sessions.
5. Course status
These reports include two essential pieces of information – the number of learners participating in a course and its completion status. They also include the organization each learner is part of. Next to each person’s name, you'll see the date when they enrolled, whether they finished the course or not, and their result.
See information related to a specific online course
6. Course attendance
Course attendance reports show you how many trainees are currently enrolled, in which courses, as well as when and how often they attend their virtual training sessions. These reports help you pinpoint attendance issues. They can help you motivate employees in hard times if you see they are lagging behind and struggle to accomplish their training and career goals.
7. Course completion
As their name suggests, these straightforward reports show how many people have completed their courses and when. You can schedule to receive them automatically in your LMS, right after the due course completion date, so you’ll have a quick overview of how efficient the course was and how many people it engaged.
Read more: 5 LMS analytics for a successful L&D program
8. Assessment usage
These reports show you the different types of assessments the LMS provides and how instructors can use them. They are great for new instructors who are just getting acquainted with the LMS.
See the many different types of assessments that are used throughout the platform
9. Missing work
This report shows which trainees have fallen behind with their assessments and didn’t manage to complete and submit them in due time. They are useful when you need to make sure new hires are up-to-date on their induction or compliance training. These reports also help trainers take action and help slower learners.
10. Policy reports
Policy-related reports help you make sure everyone in your organization has access to the necessary policy documents. In this way, you see all the policy documents on the platform, which users have access to them and who accepted the site policies.
11. Compliance reports
These types of LMS reports are a must-have and a must-use. One of the main advantages of having an LMS is that it streamlines compliance training. With these reports, trainers can get at-a-glance insights into the company’s compliance training and see which courses are required for this purpose, their status, and the number of enroller users. They can quickly make adjustments if, for example, one team or department has failed to finish or even get enrolled in an important course.
Stay on top of compliance training with compliance reports.
12. Custom LMS reports
Customization is key to a successful training program and custom (also known as ad-hoc LMS reports) can help you create a more personalized and effective training experience. These types of LMS reports allow instructors and admins to define the parameters that interest them while generating a report.
This enables them to create comprehensive or simple reports based on their specific needs. Custom reports help save a lot of time. You only gain access to the information you need the most without searching for it in a generic report.
There are multiple items you can include or exclude from ad-hoc reports, such as:
- Learning paths;
- Learning goals.
LMSs provide an intuitive way to generate these reports by using filters, sorting, and grouping information according to the desired parameters. You can also customize the chart output according to your style preferences.
Here are some types of training reports you can customize in an LMS:
- Scores reports
LMSs allow you to generate custom reports based on trainees’ results and list them in order from higher to lower or the other way round. You have different filters that can show you an accurate view of how learners are doing in their assessment so that you can intervene as needed.
For example, you can generate reports with scores below a certain minimum level, then contact the employees who achieved the lowest result and schedule a separate training session to help them close their learning gaps.
Score reports support trainers in achieving their program’s goals whether they’re focusing on upskilling, right-skilling, or retraining the staff. These reports play a pivotal role in helping companies improve their training programs in a context where more than 80% of HR leaders are dissatisfied with program results.
- Course completion reports
Custom course completion reports will show you how many trainees completed their courses and when. You can tweak these reports to see a certain list of learners or all of them and the date when each one completed their courses. This data can also be displayed in ascending or descending order.
Course completion reports help you understand which trainees struggle to complete their courses in time, which move faster on their learning paths, and which typically fail to meet their deadlines. Thus, you can take the most appropriate actions to support each one of them by changing the course deadlines or offering more study resources to learners who progress at a faster pace.
- User and course reports
These can be comprehensive reports you generate at an organizational level by including all the users in the platform or more restrictive reports that only include a specific department’s users. You can choose the courses you want to see in your report. For example, select those that are more recent or those that are due in the near future.
You can also get a generic, business-level course report that shows how many courses you have in each course style category (e.g. instructor-led courses, self-paced courses, blended courses, etc.).
These reports are important because they provide useful insights into what types of courses users generally engage in, how many LMS users are active learners, and generally, how your training progresses over the years.
- Group reports
Group reports can also work at an organizational level, or you can downscale them to the extent you need. It’s possible to get comprehensive reports on all the user groups in the organization or filter only certain information. For example, you can generate a business report that displays the number of members by nationality or other demographics.
These reports can prove helpful both for the L&D and the HR department. They show at-a-glance information about the make-up of the organization’s staff and lots of stats that can help leaders make key business decisions. Since groups are social and communication features, they also give hints on how the organization’s members interact with each other and what their interests are.
Custom LMS reports feature handy charts that allow you to visualize data.
The types of LMS reports that drive business growth
Big data is everywhere nowadays, powering organizations from small to large. Having an LMS that looks good and helps you easily train and assess your employees is great. But finding one that does all these and also provides comprehensive reporting features is even better.
Reporting and analytics tools can provide you with an instant overview of your training’s progress. Whether you want to see your new enrollments, course completion status, submitted assessments, or past due courses, all it takes is a few clicks to get the related report.
There are many types of LMS reports. They can help your L&D and even your HR department streamline their activity, while the company’s management can use them to quickly get the numbers they need for data-driven decisions.