Bret Weinraub, CEO“How can we improve learning-system and LMS owner satisfaction rates?,” asks Bret Weinraub, CEO and Founder of Golden, CO, based Aura Software. This e-learning vendor produces Bright, integration middleware that enables trackable content to be delivered from generic platforms like WordPress, SalesForce, or chat applications like Telegram.
“The first step in solving low LMS satisfaction is to address the all-in-one phenomenon,” adds Bret. Breaking up monolithic e-learning software into best of breed, cooperative cloud-based services is critical to the Bright strategy. “Instead of trying to build the best tracking engine AND the best content production tool AND the best management stack AND the best delivery engine, in the age of web services, a best of breed solution can be broken out to the strongest player in an individual feature area.” With their strong collaborative relationships with innovative and award-winning e-learning cloud services like—Rustici Software’s SCORMCloud tracking engine and dominKnow Learning Systems’ Claro, Bright based solutions benefit from the fast pace of innovation from the co-operating players. “Remember how the space shuttle flew with the computing power of 1982 TI calculator, or how your $300 phone has a better navigation app than your car’s $2000 onboard system?” reflects Bret. “With less to focus on, we can be better at it. That improves quality and satisfaction.”
“The next piece of solving the low LMS satisfaction puzzle is to accept that change is given in the purchasing organization.” With their focus on flexibility over voluminous features, the Bright platform collects more LMS 2nd and 3rd time buyers over first-timers. It also explains the high number of referral customers from other e-learning companies. “The more features a platform has, the harder it is to change, the more expensive it is to produce, and thus you have to spend more money on sales and marketing to pay for it all.” Aura’s strategy is to combine very high quality core management and delivery functions for e-learning content with a best of breed extensions model.
Our goal is a healthy project ecosystem where the customer can easily keep pace with their changing requirements
“We stick to the core functions, with an eye on making them as flexible as possible. Having a great extensions model means the customers can to get that one critical one-off feature they need, without carrying the heavy load of a really complex system.”
New initiatives focus on bringing Bright to a whole new array of platforms. PHPConnect for Bright offers a streamlined integration for the numerous PHP web content platforms, with JavaConnect for Bright next in line. Aura Software’s future roadmap reflects this age of big data. “We do a great job of collecting our learner data and a very good job of reporting it.” When we review the LMS satisfaction data, unhappiness with reporting is frequently cited by dissatisfied LMS customers. “So we are building a strategy to shoot the lights out in this area,” adds Weinraub.
“Quality is more than a motivational poster you put on the wall. You have to live it.” Citing the corporate strategy of 100 percent alignment with customer satisfaction rates, Weinraub says, “Aura must do the little things and get rid of the things that don’t fit.” For Aura Software, these “little things” mean a goal of 100 percent test coverage, an obsession with the service uptime, exceptional documentation and timely support from friendly knowledgeable humans. “Our end goal is a healthy project ecosystem where the customer can easily keep pace with their changing requirements, get timely support, and benefit from innovation across the technology landscape.”