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Acorn LMS integrations.

We play nice with others.

We promise you any integrations from the range below for $1K or less. And live in under 8 weeks. The integration doesn’t function as per your brief? Get a full refund.

What are your Acorn LMS integration options?

Productivity Suites

Think G-Suite or M365

HRIS

Think SuccessFactors or Workday

Payroll

Think ADP or Aurion

Third party content providers

Think LinkedIn Learning or Go1

eCommerce

Think Stripe or Square

Video Conferencing

Think Zoom or Webex

Authoring Tools

Think Adobe Captivate or Elucidat

Collaboration Tools

Think Evernote or Confluence

LRS

Think Rustici or SCORM Cloud

Customer Success Management

Think Intercom or Gainsight

Customer Relationship Management

Think Salesforce or HubSpot

Social Media

Think Facebook or HootSuite

CMS

Think WordPress or Kontent.AI

Proctoring

Think Integrity Advocate or Mettl

Assessment & Evaluation

Think ExamSoft or Kahoot

Language Translation

Think AWS translator on G11N

Digital Learning Environment

Think Pearson’s MyLab

Member Engagement Platforms

Think Higher Logic or Hivebrite

And via the following integration types

xAPI

LTI

Webhooks

SSO

SFTP

What’s the catch? Why are our competitors charging many multiples for both LMS integration builds and maintenance?

  • Integrations are one of the top 3 reasons customers join us from another LMS provider.
  • One of our goals is to be easy to work with, and this removes that hurdle.
  • We know you get a lot more value when integrations work as expected, and in return we know our customers stay with us longer.
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In short, we’re in it for the long haul with you. So, we figure let’s start right.

Cheap doesn’t always mean bad quality, and expensive doesn’t always mean good.

It seems to be an established truism that learning management system integrations need to be expensive and take months to years to build in the eLearning space. But for us, that just doesn’t work out to be true with our 150+ customer.

That’s why we commit to our brand promise. We commit to any integrations from the range above for $1K or less. And in under 8 weeks. Integration doesn’t function as per your brief? Get a full refund.

Do not underestimate the importance of your learning management system integrations, they enable more than you think.

Getting Business Buy-In:Do you need IT buy-in? Are you in IT, and fed-up with underperforming eLearning suppliers?

Measuring ROI and Learning Impact:Where does your reporting data need to seamlessly go? Also think visualisation, with tools like Power BI.

Building an Organisational Learning Culture:Share multiple content formats across multiple content platforms.

Supporting Learning in a Hybrid Workforce:With work from home, anywhere or hybrid firmly established, integrations to enable learning become paramount.

And on that point…Embedding Learning into the Flow of Work: Reduce friction by integrating your LMS with your digital HQ.

LMS key features designed to not just enable you to do your job, but get you promoted.

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Learn more about the Acorn API here:

LMS INTEGRATIONS LEARNING ZONE

LMS integrations work behind the scenes to make the LMS experience seamless. Everything from business processes to user access can be impacted by the humble LMS integration, which is why you should get to know them.

In this guide, we’ve covered everything you need to know about learning management system integrations, including why they’re important, the key integrations to look out for and some of the challenges associated with them.

What is a learning management system (LMS)?

An LMS is a software application, hosted either via the internet or as a native app, that supports the delivery, creation, assessment and reporting of virtual learning and development.

What are LMS integrations?

LMS integrations act as the bridge between your learning management system and other software systems, allowing data to automatically move between those systems for easier accessibility and reduced need for manual processes.

Why is LMS integration important?

While learning management systems are valuable tools on their own, they can only take you so far. You see, learning management systems exist in a bit of a vacuum. They need help connecting with other software solutions you may use, like your HRIS suite, G Suite or Google Analytics. That’s where integrations come in.

They impact three main components in your LMS:

  1. Content. Consider how you can create, purchase and access training courses
  2. Data. Everything from training data like course completions to system analytics.
  3. Users. How they access the system and what they need to do in it.

That gives you a few distinct benefits.

Accessibility

Many technical integrations enable smooth but secure access to your LMS. Single Sign On (SSO – which we’ll cover in more detail below) allows LMS users to repurpose the same login credentials from other sites, reducing the potential for password fatigue.

Enhanced reporting

Integrations are what make LMS reporting possible. They pull the data, both from within an LMS and external systems, needed to understand the efficacy and ROI of online training. Some enable you to export and send reports to external emails, so you can easily schedule reports for any stakeholders.

Reduce redundant data

You’ll reduce the integrity of your data if it exists in silos or you’re constantly manually syncing it. Say you’re mapping learning pathways to a capability framework. Integrations automatically pull and sync data between two software systems – like HR and the LMS – meaning that stakeholders viewing it across multiple platforms are all looking at the same data. TLDR; Everything’s centralised with LMS integrations.

Save time

Along the same lines, the automation that comes from an LMS integration reduces L&D’s administrative tasks. Duplicating content, accessing third party content, scheduling emails and automated notifications are all functions of an LMS integration – and reduce the learning curve associated with the system.

The different types of LMS integrations

Here’s the thing about LMS integrations: They’re often complementary or entirely reliant on other integrations.

You’d be wise to think about them as a connected network rather than separate LMS integration options to pick and choose from. Many learning management systems may already come with these as part of their architecture.

API

An application programming interface (API) integration acts as an intermediary between two systems. It’s like the king of all integrations – since it facilitates

An API key is often used in the code to allow software to interact. They are also used to control how an interface is being used to prevent malicious activity.

Do I really need API integrations?

Yes. You are already using APIs without knowing it. Though important to the online learning business, the API integration is a tenet of most cloud-based apps. Payment gateways are an example of APIs at work – you don’t see the transaction, but it clears behind the scenes.

Content management system (CMS)

A CMS allows you to centralise siloed data and automate tasks that otherwise require detailed oversight. Essentially, it’s a part of the LMS where you can create, manage and easily update content.

Do I really need a CMS integration?

There’s no way around it: If you want to create your own content, you want a CMS. A CMS ensures that all online learning content is compatible with tech standards like SCORM and TinCan.

Check with the LMS vendor if they have an activity bank, which would mean you could create training content once and save it as a template for future use.

Customer relationship management (CRM)

If you’ve got external users in your LMS, you’ll want it to integrate with CRM software. In this case, the LMS integrates with any CRM software you may have. A Salesforce integration is an example here.

Do I really need a CRM integration?

If there is a direct line between L&D and sales, yes. A CRM-LMS integration can turn your LMS into another business development and customer success hub. It allows you to:

  • Receive real-time customer data
  • Train and track new customers
  • Create new revenue streams
  • Synchronise product or service catalogues and training materials
  • Centralise customer data and marketing tools.

Single Sign On (SSO)

Single Sign On allow users to access multiple applications with the same details. It works in two parts.

  1. It authenticates the user’s login details
  2. It authorises the user to access a certain suite of training content as authorised by an admin.

Products like the Microsoft 365 suite utilise SSO. An SSO-LMS integration can use the very same credentials to validate a user’s access.

Do I really need an SSO integration?

Many organisations require their users to frequently change their passwords as a security measure. Even if you provide new passwords, there’s always a chance they’ll forget them.

eCommerce

Along a similar vein of customer relationship management, an eCommerce integration is important for commoditised or paid content. It has business applications as well as meeting users’ needs.

An eCommerce-LMS integration often uses SSO to carry out payments. Most people have multiple accounts for different online stores. It won’t enthuse potential customers to have to create and remember another, which is why enabling SSO for accounts and payments matters. (You can see why it’s important to consider LMS integrations together.)

Do I really need an eCommerce integration?

If there is a direct line between L&D and sales, yes. A CRM-LMS integration can turn your LMS into another business development and customer success hub. It allows you to:

  1. You can set prices and differentiate them for users or products.
  2. When combined with analytics and CRM, you get a centralised view of user data.
  3. You can create and sell certifications or other online training.
  4. SSO gives you and your customers greater data security.

Social media & collaboration

You’re not necessarily integrating Instagram with the LMS here. It’s more about collaborative social media features within the LMS, like forums and content sharing.

A social media integration enables more interactive courses and allows users to share learning content within the system.

On the other hand, collaborative integrations mean that things like training sessions automatically populate in user’s calendars.

Do I really need integrations with collaboration tools?

If you want to create a user-friendly and intuitive platform, yes. If your LMS doesn’t function as users expect – that is, like other systems they are familiar with – they won’t use it.

And if users don’t interact with the system, you miss out on the crucial information that the learning experience is meant to provide. And if you’re implementing an LMS for workforce planning, compliance or capability development needs, you’re not going to see improvements or ROI on business operations.

Video conferencing

You’ll want some variety in your eLearning courses. Users will likely expect that their online courses include video. Consider things like:

  • Instructor-led training
  • Breakout groups
  • Virtual classrooms
  • Online meetings.

Systems you might use for every day meetings falls under this umbrella; Adobe Connect, Microsoft Teams and Zoom included.

Do I really need video conferencing?

The key benefits of integrating an LMS with video software are:

  • Users can register one time in the LMS and, with collaboration tools, see the session in their calendars
  • L&D and HR leaders don’t have to justify cost for multiple software systems
  • Sessions can be scheduled once in the LMS and automatically created in the webinar tool
  • Attendance can be automatically compiled, rather than needing a facilitator to take roll call.

Third party content

This is actually a Learning Tools Interoperability (LTI) integration. It enables the LMS to host content from external providers so that learners don’t need to log into a separate system.

An LTI integration with LMS isn’t always the standard, though. There are three major versions of the LTI standard, and not all of them are supported in a learning management system integration.

Do I really need an LTI-LMS integration?

You’ll want an LTI integration with LMS software, as it ensures that any learning data created outside your system is pulled back into it. This is important for learning analytics, as it ensures your reports are accurate and any decisions you make based on them well-informed, too.

Challenges of LMS integrations

While great and necessary tools, learning management system integrations aren’t without their technical challenges.

If you’re not a developer, you may find actually coding integrations into your LMS difficult. Building it is only the first step, too. While they streamline a lot of manual tasks, integrations don’t always share data in the most intuitive way. Sometimes integrations don’t play well with others. APIs often aren’t standardised – they are proprietary for each LMS.

Some integrations will cost you on top of the LMS, too, which means you have to justify how they’ll help address learning needs. Some integrations only work in certain types of software applications, so you may be limited by your choice of cloud-based or self-hosted LMS.

Key takeaways

There are plenty of LMS integrations you could introduce to your learning ecosystem. Some of the key integrations we recommend are:

  • APIs
  • CMSs
  • CRMs
  • SSO
  • eCommerce
  • Social media
  • Video conferencing
  • LTI.

The main point is to actually utilise integrations and understand how they work, both independently and together. An LTI-compatible LMS, as an example, ensures that you can have third party content, which in turn impacts eCommerce and is impacted by video conferencing integrations.