It’s easy to be overwhelmed by the abundance of learning management systems available online and through agencies like us. Off-the-shelf. Content management. Pay-per-seat. Just these terms alone are confusing. 

To cut through all this we’ve created this blog to help you understand whether or not working with Plume is right for you.

But first, maybe you’re wondering why we’d even go to the trouble of telling you why you don’t need us? It’s simple. We’re an agency focused on long-term partnerships, scalability and future-proofing. What this means, in reality, is that, for some of you, a Plume system isn’t necessary and while you might be excited by the prospect of working with us, it might not actually be a decision that’s right for your business.

How do I know if I need a custom LMS?”

If you answer yes to any of the things in Section 1 then you definitely need an LMS.
If you answer yes to any of the things in Section 2 then you definitely need a custom system.

Integrated definitions and supporting content

Section 1: Basic features of a e-learning platform

We’ve taken an overview from systems across the market; most systems will have these features, but some will also include features from Section 2. 

At a glance most will have the following capabilities: 

Course creation/ management

  • Create lessons
  • Add content such as text, images and video
  • Upload files/ downloadable resoources
  • Deliver certificates

Lesson delivery

  • Upload video lessons
  • Upload/ embed video clips/ YouTube videos

User management

  • See users on a course
  • Add new users to a course
  • See which courses a user is enrolled in

Design (not always an option)

  • Add your logo
  • Change the colours
  • Accessibility on mobile, tablet and desktop

Section 2: Custom features created for an e-learning platform

Our systems have all of the functionality above plus the ability to do more.

Course creation/ management

  • Live video embedding/ webinar streaming
  • Notifications and custom emails
  • Gamification
  • Interactive elements
  • Custom learner dashboard

Lesson delivery

  • Live video streaming
  • Interactions menu
  • Live comments and questions
Custom learner dashboard concept

User management

  • See a users’ progress on any/all courses
  • See course completion rates
  • Advanced analytics and reporting
  • Give admin rights to another organisation
    • Can allow them to add users, see progress reports and access advanced analytics
    • Can allow them to add and edit content


  • Complete control over all branding and visual elements
  • Optimised user interface
  • Customised user dashboards
  • Bespoke user interface
Netflix-style video library for a mobile dog training LMS

Sell courses

  • Subscriptions
  • Payment plans
  • Integrated e-commerce
  • Class booking system
  • Digital marketing services
  • Landing page optimisation
  • Affiliates area

Do you need a custom e-learning platform?

If you answered yes to any of the questions in Section 2 then, yes, you need a custom learning management system from Plume.


Because, most of the shelf solutions won’t be able to offer you everything you need, and the more functions you add, the bigger the price tag. You could easily spend £60,000 a year on a system when you could have had one custom built for half the price.

In a number of cases, custom features are always cheaper if you own your system, and when you own your system you can flexibly add and adjust features you need to, in order to suit your evolving business needs – without worrying about annual fees and contracts.

Still not sure? Take a look at the resources below for more information on e-learning: