Self-Paced Training Labs
Effective training is one of the cornerstones of producing positive business metrics. In order to drive results like increased product adoption, improved customer retention, and higher profits, tech companies need to educate their customers. Not only do companies need to educate customers, but they also need to provide them with opportunities for hands-on learning. Simply showing a customer a product demo or presenting them with a list of technical instructions is usually not nearly as effective as actually involving them in their product education. That’s where self-paced training labs can improve the e-learning experience.
Self-paced instruction in a virtual, cloud-based environment is potentially one of the most effective ways to provide technical education for customers. Learners can take a hands-on approach and fully engage with the training material when they use self-paced training, meaning they are more likely to retain what they learn and achieve positive outcomes. But what exactly do we mean by self-paced learning? Online learning comes in a variety of styles and formats, so let’s take a moment to define the self-paced meaning we’ll be using in this article.
Most traditional learning environments use a scheduled style of learning. Nearly all of us have experience with this kind of learning from our days in school or maybe from another kind of training in which we’ve participated. This type of education is carried out according to a preset schedule that requires learners to complete certain tasks or reach certain goals by specific deadlines. The deadlines are usually set by the instructor, and the learners have little or no say in the schedule.
Self-paced learning takes an entirely different approach. A self-paced learning environment does not use set deadlines but allows students to complete the required tasks whenever they prefer. As long as students complete the necessary work before the end of the course, they can work at whatever pace they choose. This enables students to learn according to their preferences and as their own schedule allows. Self-paced training is a relatively new strategy, but self-paced learning examples have already proven to be successful at many companies.
Since many working professionals have busy lives with numerous responsibilities and commitments, they may not have the ability to add a formal, scheduled training course to the mix. Self-paced training can enable them to learn effectively by completing the work at their own pace and scheduling it however works best for them. Self-paced learning typically happens in an online environment, which makes it even more accessible for learners.
By using self-paced cloud training technology, software and technology companies can provide their customers with training opportunities on demand. Customers no longer have to make time to attend courses in person or stress over whether or not they’ll have time to complete training materials on a specific day. Instead, they can access virtual learning environments remotely and take their time with training content that’s self-paced. Examples of the benefits of this kind of training include increased learner engagement and improved product adoption.
Ordinarily, customers would not be able to engage with products or try out features for themselves without a scheduled demo or training session. However, virtual self-paced training labs make it possible for customers to get hands-on with the product and the learning material on their own time. This enables learners to slow down and spend as much time as they need learning about a particular concept or feature instead of forcing them to conform to a predetermined pace. When learners are given this kind of freedom and control over their own learning experience, it can lead to improved knowledge retention.
Self-Paced Training Examples
Self-paced training examples come in all shapes and sizes. Some self-paced learning experiences might be confined to a single self-paced learning module, whereas others may encompass multiple modules throughout entire self-paced online courses. Likewise, you can find tools for creating virtual training environments from a variety of different self-paced learning websites. The type of software a tech company uses to drive self-paced learning opportunities for customers has a large impact on whether or not the training is successful. Top-quality virtual training lab software can help companies provide customers with excellent online education that improves their experiences with the product.
Here are a few examples of the ways companies can use Skytap Virtual IT Labs to improve training outcomes:
Deliver a wide variety of virtual training experiences
You can use Skytap to set up virtual training environments in all kinds of different styles. For example, you can offer virtual self-paced training, but you can also set up instructor-led online classes. You can also accommodate groups of many different sizes and even provide learners with opportunities for hands-on exercises. Learners can benefit from a virtual technical training environment that can be set up and ready to go in just a few minutes — plus, setting up virtual classrooms with Skytap is so easy that you don’t even need IT support in order to get it done.
Reduce training expenses
Independent software vendors (ISVs) that use Skytap to power their virtual self-paced training labs can also save a considerable amount of resources. Traditional classroom training can get expensive very quickly. There are many different aspects that need to be funded, like physical space to hold the training sessions, any hardware required, not to mention travel for instructors or learners. While traditional in-person training is time-consuming and expensive, virtual training labs enable companies to offer the same training for only a fraction of the resources. When technical training takes place in an online environment and learners can complete the content at their own pace, companies can save money and scale their training much more effectively.
Offer training anytime, anyplace
One of the primary benefits of using Skytap Virtual IT Labs to offer virtual self-paced training to customers is that it gives them 24/7 access to training content. It’s hard to meet your customers’ training needs when your company only offers training at certain times or in certain locations. Virtual training labs make it possible for customers to access content from anywhere they are, and the self-paced aspect means they can complete the material anytime it’s convenient for them. Customers from around the world can learn more effectively because they can do so on their own terms.
Manage training more effectively
Virtual self-paced training labs powered by Skytap also provide access to tools that course administrators can use to manage learning experiences. These tools provide complete visibility into classroom environments, enabling administrators to exercise full control over course material and even customize experiences for specific learners. Skytap also adheres to the IMS Learning Tools Interoperability (LTI) standard, which means you can conveniently combine it with a preexisting Learning Management System.
Self-Paced Learning PDF
Virtual IT labs present a variety of significant advantages over traditional, scheduled courses that are held in person. A self-paced classroom can be one of the most effective environments for familiarizing customers with products and providing them with technical training. Let’s take a look at a few of the broader benefits of self-paced learning that are not specific to any particular self-paced training software.
Virtual, on-demand labs for customer technical training are beneficial for a number of reasons, but perhaps the most important reason is that they are simply effective. Scientific studies prove that self-paced learning can have a positive effect on how well learners are able to remember the material. When customers are allowed to allocate their training time as they see fit, they can spend more time on the parts of the training they find most difficult. This can allow every learner to maximize their own productivity instead of being limited by a “one-size-fits-all” approach.
Scalable and resource-conscious
Self-paced learning activities are much easier to scale than traditional learning experiences. Virtual training environments can support as many learners as companies require, which can enable them to scale up training efforts without allocating more resources. Online training courses also frequently employ reusable forms of educational content like interactive demos, videos, or self-paced learning PDFs, which can be accessed by any number of learners. On the other hand, traditional training courses can only be held once and then must be repeated if more learners need to be trained.
Another major benefit of using self-paced training labs to educate customers is that self-paced training is learner-centric. This means that it works in favor of the learner to create the best possible learning experience. For example, self-paced training enables learners to complete courses at whatever pace is convenient for them and from whichever location they choose. This flexibility can remove a lot of the pressure of traditional, scheduled learning environments and improve learners’ outcomes.
Using self-paced training labs for customer technical education is one of the best ways for companies to improve metrics like product or feature adoption. A hands-on, self-paced approach can provide the kind of exceptional learning experience that enables customers to learn effectively and retain information for a long time to come. ISVs have a special obligation to provide their customers with effective training opportunities because technical training can be more difficult than other kinds of customer training. It’s important to use the right tools, like self-paced training labs, to provide the highest quality user education possible.
Read more about Skytap Virtual Labs can support your organization’s training needs.