LMS Buying Process - Cost of LMS

Can you lower the cost of an LMS with negotiation? What is negotiable? Is it worth it? How do you do it? We can help! Our founder and CEO, John Leh, has been on the front lines of LMS negotiating for over $100,000,000 of learning systems buying and selling.

If you are buying an LMS or learning system online without talking to a salesperson, then negotiation isn’t possible. But in all other cases, you are leaving money or opportunity on the table if you don’t negotiate on the cost of an LMS.

Vendors expect you to negotiate. They know creating learning websites is a huge investment for your organization. They also know that if you’re satisfied and grow your learning business, you’ll be back when it’s time to expand.

Negotiating the cost of an LMS gets you more

In every organization, the available budget for learning initiatives is only so big, and must be divided among the learning platform, content and marketing. Ideally, you want to spend less on the software so you can allocate more to the items that will keep users engaged – like compelling content.

Negotiations aren’t limited to license costs and haggling over money. In a learning system solution sale, there are many other areas of leverage and impact, and these might not be recognized unless negotiation over the cost of an LMS takes place.

Vendors can offer more resources, free modules, better license tiers, incremental services, length of contract and timing incentives. Buyers can negotiate on all of these and offer incentives of their own, like willingness to do case studies, joint marketing, reference calls and much more.

As we said, vendors expect to negotiate – especially when they are close to winning or losing a customer – and most build a discount factor into their pricing. If the opportunity to save some money on the cost of an LMS is there, you might as well take it.

How do we negotiate?

This is a great starting question: How do we negotiate on the cost of an LMS? If you haven’t negotiated for large technology systems in the past, it might seem daunting, but it’s not if you know how.

As with several steps throughout the LMS Buying Process, preparing in advance is key to success and will make you feel more comfortable as you start the vendor discussion.

Your learning system selection team should prepare by reviewing these questions, working out the position you bring to the table, and knowing your non-negotiable items and limits.

  • When should we negotiate?
  • With how many vendors?
  • What is our goal?
  • What is our leverage?
  • What if the vendor says no?
  • Do we negotiate all at once, or little by little (one item at a time)?
  • Are we willing to use timing, contract length, services and advocacy as bargaining chips?
  • How can we get the vendor more invested in our success?

The answers to all these questions and more can easily be found in the Talented Learning Center resources.

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Benefits of Membership

If you are shopping for an LMS or other learning system, join the Talented Learning Center to access deep, fiercely-independent research and education needed to succeed.  We have free and premium membership levels outlined below:

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Many resources in the Talented Learning Center are available when you sign up for FREE as a Basic Member. You’ll have access to content such as:

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Become a Premium Member (7-day free trial)

As you’re proceeding through the Learning System Buying Process, you’re likely to face some obstacles and uncertainty about how to proceed. Once again, we’re here to help! Premium Membership in the Talented Learning Center includes many more resources to help you at every stage of the LMS or learning systems buying process. Try it FREE for 7 days when you sign up for Premium Membership, where you’ll receive all the benefits of Basic Membership, plus:

  • Ask John Leh Videos – Learn about learning systems technology one question at a time with our library of short informational videos.
  • Microlessons, Courses and Certifications – Get up to speed with our library of over 20 (and growing), 15-minute, microlessons on learning systems use cases, stages of the buying process and key functional capabilities.
  • On-Demand Webinars – Get in-depth expert advice with our deep catalog of webinars and panel discussions on a wide variety of topics from buying, implementing and improving your learning system initiatives

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