Moodle is the most widely used Learning Management System in the world. The Moodle platform boasts more than 100,000 implementations and serving more than 145 million learners worldwide. One of the reasons Moodle is so widely adopted, and one of its primary advantages, is that it is open-source and free to download. This means that the cost to support Moodle is much cheaper than the proprietary closed-source solutions on the market.
Moodle Hosting Options
Many organizations attempt to do their own Moodle hosting, to varying degrees of success. More often than not, however, organizations quickly reach the “now what?” point: they have been able to install Moodle and get it functioning on a basic level, but need to spend hours of time researching how to make the system more robust and how to add specific kinds of functionality (which can be enhanced through thousands of free Moodle plugins or third-party solutions).
It is at this point that the adage, “Moodle is free like a puppy,” becomes so apparently true: a puppy may be free but feeding it, grooming it, and caring for it most certainly is not. It takes extended resources to support your puppy (and similarly, your Moodle environment) as it grows.
Organizations that attempt to self-host Moodle tend to find themselves lacking in bandwidth and expertise. They often begin looking for help to host their system and provide additional Moodle support and services. Some organizations immediately search for a hosting partner from the get-go. Others may be working with a vendor who provides lackluster support or find themselves struggling with another of the Sins of Moodle Past.
Whichever situation you find yourself in, you have options. A quick search for Moodle providers will yield a dizzying number of results. Some will be Certified Moodle Partners, and many others will not. Indeed, an additional advantage of adopting Moodle is the multiple hosting options for how to host and service providers. Organizations using Moodle are never locked into working with a single provider, and can easily migrate from one to another because Moodle is open source and enables users to own their Moodle code (not the provider).
Advantages of Working with a Certified Moodle Partner
Why then, with so many potential Moodle support options to choose from, should you select a Certified Moodle Partner? Here’s why.
Moodle Partners are certified by Moodle HQ, the organization that develops and maintains the Moodle platform, to provide services in support of the product. Each Certified Moodle Partner offers different types of Moodle support and has varying areas of expertise. However, the common denominator is that Moodle Partners are Moodle experts. They’ve received the seal of approval from Moodle HQ for the Moodle support they offer to Moodle users worldwide. Moodle HQ only invites companies with demonstrated knowledge, skills, and experience in supporting Moodle to join the Partner Program. This ensures clients receive a high level of quality and expertise when choosing a Certified Moodle Partner.
Help Fund the Open Source Project
Moodle Partners contribute a portion of their revenue to Moodle HQ. They provide critical funding that supports the development of the open-source project. The continued development of the Moodle platform, including the introduction of new features and functionality, is dependent upon revenue collected from the Partner Network. By choosing a Moodle Partner, you are supporting the open-source project’s continued advancement and success.
Have a voice in the direction of the Moodle product
Moodle’s roadmap outlines the development goals for the platform and previews what is to come in future versions. The Roadmap is maintained by Moodle HQ with input from the Moodle Partner Network. As a Certified Moodle Partner, eThink is able to communicate what our clients need and want to see in the product to Moodle HQ. We help ensure your feedback reflects on the Roadmap as a Moodle host. This direct line of communication with Moodle HQ gives our clients a voice regarding the direction of the product that can only be had by choosing a Moodle Partner.
Closer ties to the Moodle Community
Another advantage our clients see from working with a Moodle Partner is a closer tie to the Moodle Community. The open source Moodle community is incredibly active, with Moodle forums, Community sites, and annual MoodleMoots hosted across the globe. Certified Moodle Partners help support these community initiatives by sponsoring events where Moodlers can meet, network, and share resources and ideas that help support Moodle users and the Moodle project as a whole.
How Do You Find a Certified Moodle Partner?
As noted above, not all Moodle providers are Certified Moodle Partners. There are many providers that do not have the Moodle Partner seal of approval. How can you ensure you are speaking with a Certified Moodle Partner?
A good way to find out if a Moodle provider is also a Moodle Partner is if they boast any of the Moodle Partner logos on their website. If you have any questions or would like to learn more about our Moodle support offerings, contact us!Let's Chat!