Previously, we talked about why you should consider bringing your onboarding, training and continuing education programs in-house and online. For many people it stops at talk, since the search for the right system can become daunting.

The alphabet soup of TMS (Talent Management System), LMS (Learning Management System) and CEMS (Continuing Education Management System), and the differences between the three can seem like you’re reading hieroglyphics.

The trick is in the names, so here’s your Rosetta Stone when it comes to deciphering online learning tools.

A Talent Management System does just that, manage talent. And while it may have all the bells and whistles you want for a smooth employee onboarding process, it probably won’t have the ability to webcast live events or reformat live events for online delivery, testing and certification.

It’s at this point that discerning the differences between types of systems can become more confusing. A Learning Management System can have many of the features and functionalities you desire, but it may be missing the rigorous testing and certification capabilities you need to meet your employees’ mandatory continuing education requirements. While there are many companies that use an LMS to deliver education and training, it is not the optimal system for delivering accredited continuing education.

A Continuing Education Management System includes all the functions unique to continuing professional education and the rules applicable to maintaining compliance. Only a CEMS will enable you to create accredited content, deliver it in a variety of formats, meet testing requirements, and report on course completion and continuing education compliance. In short, it is the system of choice for any business whose employees have mandatory continuing education requirements.

For a deeper comparison between and LMS and a CEMS download this tipsheet.