Harbinger's customer is a diversified company that provides vital products and services to customers in more than 60 countries and employs over 100,000 people across multiple business lines. The company uses a popular Learning Management System (LMS) for all their internal training needs across all business units. The business units themselves are very diverse in their services and have their own modules to match their respective solutions and line of business. The business unit managers schedule trainings and use the LMS to define and monitor progress of their employees.
The company wanted to improve the LMS to provide better experience to the learners. The user interface had to be provided to an exacting standard of usability without compromising on performance. Since the business units themselves were very diverse, they needed different modules and configurable layouts with minimal programming effort. Hence, the system had the dual objective of improving learner engagement and fulfilling the customization and layout management need of the business unit managers.
The choice of right AJAX framework was critical for the customer due to the user interface, layout and configuration requirements. Harbinger studied many open source AJAX frameworks for their user interface quality, customizability, performance and overall maturity and durability. Ext JS was chosen as the framework that best suited the company's need. It had the richest selection of widgets and components in its library. It could be customized extensively using themes, and was very good at handling layouts. In addition, the performance of Ext JS was the best in its class. Many widgets and components from the Ext JS library were extended and customized during development. The availability of developer community and the quality of documentation contributed significantly to the smooth development of the system.
The system provides an order of magnitude improvement to the LMS. The company is able to configure the look and feel, layout and the right accessibility of modules to its business unit managers through a new Web 2.0 interface and a simple XML file. The business unit managers are able to manage their modules and course schedules with great ease. For example, where course scheduling involved complex data entry and the use of forms earlier, the managers now use a simple drag and drop interface over a calendar. The learning experience of users of the LMS has also greatly improved through the use of innovative widgets built and extended from the Ext JS library.