2008 Software Satisfaction Awards : Help us find the UK's best training tools

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SSA08We'd love to have your votes for the Software Satisfaction Awards 2008, which give trainers the chance to rate the creative, learning management and HR tools they use. TrainingZone.co.uk technology editor John Stokdyk explains.

Organised by TrainingZone.co.uk's parent group Sift Media and the software trade body BASDA, the Software Satisfaction Awards set out to honour the companies that do the most to keep their customers happy every year. Nearly 2,000 people voted in 19 categories last year - and we need your help to make the awards even bigger and better this year.

Photo of John Stokdyk"Learning software is still a developing market, where a large number of companies each cater for specialist niches."

John Stokdyk, TrainingZone technology editor

Anyone who uses a business application is entitled to take part in the online survey, which asks about programs for training, HR, customer relationship management and accounts.

Learning software is still a developing market, where a large number of companies each cater for specialist niches. Out in front last year in terms of both user numbers and satisfaction was Adobe's portfolio of content creation and management tools.

Products like Adobe Connect Pro address the creative side of training. But what is also needed is a way to link the training provided to people's competencies and skills. Kallidus, from last year's nominee e2train, and ForceTen, from Eedo and Harbinger's Raptivity, represent the learning management system wing of the industry. If you use another such package, make sure it is represented in the final statistics by adding it to the list with the survey's 'other' option.

Write-in votes will give us a chance to see what impact the open source Moodle LMS is having on the market. Moodle is administrated by an international, non-profit organisation and supported in the UK by a wide range of academic and training organisations such as Synergy Learning. With no single champion to campaign on its behalf, we await with interest to see how it shows up in this year's polling.

"Products like Adobe Connect Pro address the creative side of training. But what is also needed is a way to link the training provided to people's competencies and skills."

There is a certain point where the LMS crosses the boundary into HR administration, so it is also worth clicking the 'talent management' option if you use systems such as last year's category winner Taleo, or alternatives such as Cezanne HCM or Softscape Apex. The talent management category also provides an opportunity to acknowledge specialist systems such as online 360-degree appraisal tools - such as Couraud's OMT 360 and Carbon360 from Element 78.

The results are published online and in a Software Satisfaction Annual that provides valuable information for prospective software buyers (8.5MB PDF download).

While taking part in the Software Satisfaction Survey, please take a few extra moments to tell us about the HR, payroll, finance and customer relationship management systems you may come into contact with. The more people who participate across all these categories will ensure that the final awards are based on a truly representative vote.

Have your say in the 2008 Software Satisfaction Awards - complete the online survey!

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