Usually we decide to enlist a new software because we believe it will make our lives easier. But, how many times have you been told that the latest and greatest enterprise offering will be simple to use and offer greater efficiency for your company – only to find out it’s frustratingly complex.

This happens often to those who identify a need for course-creation software. We’re told that a Learning Management System (LMS) is the industry standard, so, we jump right into an enterprise-grade LMS, when in fact a simpler platform might have been more appropriate.

LMSs are powerful tools that offer a vast array of advanced functionality. They are designed to perform many tasks involved with course creation and are helpful to almost all organizations. But, there is a lot to learn and in order to master the software, you will need to become proficient at several key concepts through training courses and tutorials.

The more you use the software the better you will get at it and the more you’ll be able to do. However, it can take months to get into the swing of things. Typically, LMS platforms require a dedicated team member who has the capacity to learn the software and manage training.

If all this sounds like too much and you are looking for an easier way, there just so happens to be a range of intuitive course-authoring tools that can be downloaded from the cloud and can create a great course in the same day!

These tools require little-to-no training and have enough functionality to exceed the needs of the average user. Think of them as “plug-n-play” software solutions that can be used by anyone in your organization at any time!

Here are five key features to look for when considering course-authoring software.

1. Pre-made course templates

Sometimes the best solution is the easiest solution. Take advantage of professionally designed templates and your course will look amazing. You’ll have the flexibility to choose between a wide number of lesson formats to organize the subject matter and, if you want to test what your students have learned, you have options. Short answer response Multiple choice. True and false. All of the above!

2. Drag and drop interface

When Jef Raskin and the team at Macintosh introduced the concept of “drag and drop” to their first personal computer in 1984, they revolutionized the concept of user-friendly computing. Today, any three-year-old kid can navigate their way on an app easier than tying their shoes.

Developers of self-authoring software tools have enthusiastically applied proven user experience (UX) solutions, integrating drag and drop functionality to make creating a course or lesson as easy as ABC. Want to add photos? Text blocks? Bullet points? Platforms that allow you to drag and drop content will make your life an absolute breeze.

3. Monitoring and analytic tools

Having a software package that makes creating great courses is desirable for just about any company. Having an easy way to determine if your team members have actually completed it is just as important. Nowadays, you don’t need a full-LMS platform to get advanced functionality.

Many of the more accessible learning systems can provide a trove of valuable insights that will help you continually refine and improve your courses such as: tools that tell you how long people are taking to complete the course, average test scores, completion rates and more. It’s all at your fingertips through intuitive dashboards and reporting.

4. User experience

Self-authoring programs have removed the barriers between effective course creation – and the learner’s experience and outcomes. By removing the time spent navigating complex, overwhelming platforms with unnecessary functionality, courses developers can instead focus on creating great content. This allows creators to ensure users get the most out of each and every lesson.

5. Multiple platform capability

The easier you make it for employees to take their training, the more effective it will be. That means giving them the ability to complete courses on any of their devices including smartphones, tablets, PCs, and Macs, on both IOS and Android. Be sure to choose “responsive” training software that scales to provide greater user experience on multiple devices.

Sounds easy. Right?

Now comes the hard part. Deciding which platform is right for you, and which one is easiest to use. Be sure to do your homework and always request a free demo first.