Facing a growing challenge of delivering training across time zones with a lean team, a global data software company sought a virtual labs solution to efficiently deliver hands-on, on-demand training.
With Skytap Virtual IT Labs, the company now offers “hands-on-demand” training where team members can access individualized, geolocated virtual learning environments on-demand.
Leading global data software company with a mission to help people see and understand data. With its business intelligence and analytics platform, the company empowers organizations of all sizes to make faster, more confident data-driven decisions.
A critical component of a data software company’s ability to deliver on its mission to help people see and understand data is employee training. The company team responsible for product enablement training was looking for a way to improve the delivery and management of internal training. As a lean team looking to support training for its over 4,000 employees globally, it was challenged with the time and overhead required to manage and deliver training. In addition, because its employees are located in many different time zones, live virtual training sessions often failed to meet needs as training times were not always convenient to those working in different time zones. Last but not least, the increased prominence and permanency of remote work environments due to the pandemic only further affirmed the team’s belief that finding a scalable, virtual training platform would best meet its long-term training needs.
Recognizing these business challenges, the training team determined it needed a virtual training lab solution that would:
- Efficiently deliver training at a global scale
- Offer a best-in-class training experience for its students by providing courseware, content, and labs in front of students within seconds upon request
- Support on-demand training to allow end users to effectively consume training at their desired time and pace
- Support curriculum modernization efforts aligned to delivering more efficient training
The company selected Skytap Virtual IT Labs to power its “hands-on-demand” training program to support individual and group learning and enablement. With Skytap, individual training users can generate lab environments on-demand with a single button click by accessing pre-configured labs that provide hands-on training for specific products and features. Skytap generates each lab in the user’s locale based on their geographical location using Skytap Course Manager native capabilities. The company also uses these features to generate multiple environments for classroom-type settings.
“We were struggling to scale training, especially in situations where we had a need to provide training to people in different time zones. Prior to using Skytap, we spent a ton of overheard and time manually provisioning environments. And because we have a small team managing training, we had a strong interest in scaling our training to best meet global demands,” commented the company’s Productivity Manager.
The data software company has utilized over 3,300 unique labs since launching its hands-on-demand virtual training program and currently supports an average of 267 on-demand labs per month. In 2021, it utilized 2,045 labs (a 781% year over year increase) and is on track to grow an additional 36% to surpass 2,800 labs in 2022.
The company’s training has also been met with positive reception. According to end user survey results, it earned an average Net Promoter Score of 42 and an 85% end user satisfaction rating (defined as respondents that either strongly agreed or agreed that the training material was useful and relevant).
In addition to supporting growing training needs and earning high satisfaction ratings, the company realized the following benefits as a result of its implementation of the Skytap Virtual IT Labs training solution:
- Reduced overhead: Lowered its training management overhead costs as it can now support a global user base without incurring instructor costs
- Improved operational efficiency: Has efficient training infrastructure as a service complete with integrated controls for resource management (automatic environment provisioning/teardown) to maximize efficiency
- Improved student user experience: With a single click, students can access individualized, geolocated virtual learning environments on-demand
- Enhanced integrated learning environment: Has a truly integrated learning environment leveraging Skytap’s Course Manager learning layer
“Aside from the fantastic product, the account teams at Skytap are second to none. Everyone is committed to my success. I know I can always contact a member of the team and will receive above and beyond assistance. I even Slack with the team which allows real-time collaboration. Additionally, I’m always keen to participate in user studies, or discussions with Developers and Course Manager teams because the asks and ideas I bring to them actually make a reality. I took an idea for how I thought on-demand hands-on training should work to my Skytap team, and they helped make my dream a reality. You cannot ask for more than that.”