What do you like best?
I have been using iSpring software since 2011 and can wholeheartedly recommend it to eLearning Developers both experienced and new to the field.
The iSpring Suite app has grown over that time with consistent updates that not only add new and exciting features, but more importantly keep it compatible (and backwards compatible) with the ever-changing standards of the internet. Indeed it was one of the first (if not 'the' first) eLearning authoring tool that allowed for a combined export SCORM file that contained both Flash and HTML5 versions for maximum compatibility.
iSpring Suite is a plugin for PowerPoint which makes it easy to learn. Unlike other tools, there is an instant familiarity with iSpring and you will find that if you can use PowerPoint, you can become an eLearning course creator. However, as you will have experienced for yourself, there are good PowerPoint presentations, and there are not so good PowerPoint presentation. Course creators should still have basic knowledge of design and web principles to make effective courses.
If there is one thing about iSpring that I am more impressed with than their products it is their customer service; both one on one and on their community forums. Any questions I have raised on the forum is usually answered within 24hours by a staff member or community member. There have been some issues that have required further investigation where I have sent my files to their staff and within a few days they will have an answer to my problem or suggest an alternative solution. For instance I had an issue with a font not rendering correctly in HTML5 due to the drop shadow effect. The short term solution was to remove the effect but in the next minor update (around a month later) they had incorporated a fix.
Unlike other organisations I have dealt with there has never been a 'too hard basket' issue. iSpring staff have always been helpful in either solving my problems or giving a reason why my solution is not ideal and offering an alternative.
iSpring is probably the only organisation I would take the time to write this kind of review for. I cannot recommend them and their products enough.
What do you dislike?
As iSpring Suite is a plugin for PowerPoint there are some limitations that are inherent with this program. PowerPoint is a poor animating tool and unfortunately it is time excessively time consuming to create complex animations that are synced up to audio.
I come from the old school days of using Adobe Flash (Macromedia Flash MX 04 was the best!), so if you compare the animating tools in both of these programs there is no comparison.
If there were some additional animating tools that brought the workflow closer to that of an animating software I would save a great deal of time. However this is more a fault of PowerPoint than of iSpring Suite.
Other minor things would be formatting limitations in iSpring Interactions, however these limitations get reduced with every update they release...
Recommendations to others considering the product
If you are wanting to create eLearning content, or even mini-HTML5 or flash sites, then iSpring Suite is for you. There is a free version of this application so there is simply no excuse not to give it a try.
What business problems are you solving with the product? What benefits have you realized?
We commissioned iSpring to develop some custom functionality for their platform last month and we were not disappointed.
The brief was to allow for a participant to be able to generate their own Certificate of Participation after successfully completing a quiz - this function would normally be completed by the LMS or the training provider however we needed a way to automate this process.
iSpring went to work straight away and had a working draft within a week. After a few emails back and forth to refine to design and functionality of the product I was sent a final version of the code as well as a 'How to' document.
The Certificate Generator had the capability to be tweaked so that the fonts could be changed, the template image replaced and the wording edited however this needed a bit of coding knowledge (which is not my forte'). A staff member from iSpring spent well over an hour with me on a Gotomeeting to explain how to go about editing the Certificate Generator, which included answering many of my beginner questions.
This functionality has saved us a massive amount of time. Each certificate we need to generate would take around 2-4 minutes, depending if they are done in bulk or not.