Operating on the leading edge of human capital advances is nothing new to our company. From its creation of the industry’s first learning management system (LMS) in 1991 to its current offering of Talent Management tools and strategies, TEDS®, Inc. holds a distinctive position in the human capital industry that it helped found, a position that is both visionary and highly pragmatic.
A History of Innovation
A privately held software development and services company, TEDS began in 1980 when Virginia resident Joseph F. Ellis, Jr. launched its parent company (CBM Technologies, Inc.) with $400 and a vision: to first understand customer concerns and then work jointly with customers to devise the best technology solution. This fundamental idea, born on the eve of the technology revolution, still propels the commitment behind each TEDS innovation, including today’s advanced Talent Management suite of products and services.
Throughout the 1980s, CBM Technologies, Inc. engaged primarily in systems consulting for large-scale automated manufacturing and warehousing processes, utilizing quick turnarounds for requests ranging from software and hardware to documentation and computer-based training. When the opportunity arose, the company’s depth of technological expertise in so many areas of training and performance led the company to make a bold proposal for creating the first learning management system.
TEDS as the First LMS
While executives at a giant multi-national chemical company were in the process of applying for the Malcolm Baldrige Annual Quality Award in 1990, they found themselves stumped by one of the questions on the application. How, the Baldrige questionnaire wanted to know, did the company insure that its employees had the right knowledge and skills to do their jobs? Like most companies with thousands of employees, they had no single system to keep track of which employees had completed what training courses when. Likewise they had no method to assess how well their employees understood their training materials when the courses were completed.
The company turned to CBM Technologies, Inc. to develop a software application that would monitor the learning progress of its employees. The resulting new software—eventually known as TEDS—kept track of courses started, courses completed, and test scores attained. The creation of this product was the genesis of what is known today as a learning management system (LMS) and became the springboard for the creation of a new company called TEDS. From here, TEDS began its massive research on the management of intellectual capital, and the development of systematic processes for managing continuous learning and knowledge.
Transforming an Enterprise Workforce
While working toward the first LMS, Mr. Ellis adapted the principles of Materials Resource Planning (MRP) to create a dynamic new workforce methodology that he called People Resource Planning (PRP). At its center lay his realization that the successful transformation of an enterprise’s workforce requires not just the systematic analysis and management of its human resources, but the kind of speed and built-in efficiency that only technology can provide.
Mr. Ellis’ early grasp of this fundamental concept has proven to be an essential competitive advantage across the global marketplace, and remains the strategic backbone of all TEDS Talent Management products and services.
The TEDS Consortium
We don’t just talk about collaborating for innovation—we build it into our practices through the TEDS Consortium. One of the company’s strongest resources, the Consortium is comprised of learning management and human capital development experts from over a dozen world-class customers. Group members represent a wide range of industries, all requiring rapid and thorough responses to their real-world experiences. This active dialogue keeps TEDS in the forefront of meaningful product innovation and exemplary customer service. The TEDS Consortium, founded in 1992, meets twice a year and is the only organization of its kind.