Still using eFront 4? That’s, like, so 2016. Today, all the cool eLearning pros are using eFront 5, which brings with it a freshly redesigned user interface and lots of exciting new features.
As the version bump reveals, this is not one of the frequent point updates our hard working developers churn out, but rather a major platform upgrade.
This means that more and bigger goodies are included, but also that several aspects of the platform have been rethought and revamped.
We are going to give you a rundown of the major new features and workflow changes present in eFront 5 in the next section, but please make sure that you also read the release update notice at the end of this post to understand how the changes may affect your system.
All in all, we are pretty sure that you are going to love the new changes ― after all we have based them on your feedback and use cases.
First, here’s what’s not new: eFront 5 has kept the same no-nonsense, simple to use, philosophy that has been guiding its development from its early days.
We didn’t feel like just giving eFront a purely cosmetic UI facelift and calling it a day, and neither did we want to disrupt the workflows you know and love (the one’s that attracted you to eFront in the first place) just for the sake of it.
Instead, we focused on improving everything — UI, workflows, interactions, platform backend, in our sparkly new eFront 5.
New User Interface
We have revamped eFront 5’s user interface to make it more modern, and, even more importantly, to make it even more user friendly. This change spans every UI element, in both the online administrative pages and the instructor and learner-facing ones.
The most important UI changes in eFront 5 include:
- A rethought and redesigned Course Catalog
- A better organized Portal header, giving user easier access to profile information and communication options
- Replacing our previous system icons with a custom modern icon set
- More streamlined Course view pages that put emphasis where it matters
- A redesigned, more intuitive and practical, Admin interface
- Better organized System Settings
- Reduced UI clutter thanks to the merging and/or removal or redundant and duplicate menus and controls
Merging of Courses and Lessons
Separating Lessons from courses seemed liked a good idea at the time, but what little flexibility it offered came at the cost of extra complexity.
eFront 5 finally integrates Lessons within Courses, giving you a single, logical, hierarchy for your learning content.
You can, of course, continue to use Lessons as content repositories throughout the system, and build Courses by combining content from different lessons.
Our Course management features have always been very powerful, but their layout and terminology could sometimes confuse new Instructors.
In eFront 5 we have made several major simplifications to the course creation process and streamlined the traversal flow options.
You asked for it, you’ve got it: eFront 5 comes with a custom report generator.
Since its introduction, eFront’s custom page builder has been a popular feature, but it was always quite basic. Not anymore, though, as this release comes with a revamped custom page engine that offers you additional flexibility.
Wouldn’t it be great if you had access all the support and knowledge base documents you need without having to leave your eLearning portal?
It would, and it is: as of eFront 5, the Knowledge base and support system is available within the platform and immediately accessible to administrative accounts.
Things to consider:
As this is a major update release with many changes in both the user interface and the platform, some things will look different.
Your familiar features are still all there (alongside all the new ones), but some functionality might need to be accessed in a different way.
The biggest such changes to be aware of are:
1) CSS customizations created for eFront version 4 may not work as expected due to the the large number of UI modifications. The same stands for custom pages & blocks. That said, all the same mechanisms for theming are supported, so it should be easy to re-adjust your CSS to support eFront 5.
2) Existing plugins should continue to work as expected but the visual presentation and position of options may have been altered to fit the new platform.
3) eFront’s web-based Offline mode has been deprecated. You can still access your eFront courses offline through the native mobile app.
Excited? So are we.
eFront 5 is not just another update, but a step closer to our vision for eLearning and corporate talent development.
If you are in the process of evaluating eLearning and TDS solutions, you are welcome to create a demo account and take eFront 5 for a test-drive.
If, on the other hand, you are an existing eFront user, we will now let you enjoy your new portal. And if you have any questions or suggestions for it, our support team is at the ready.