Training enables users to make better use of your software, but did you know it can also help improve your product? That was the case for our friends at InterSystems, a company that builds mission-critical applications for healthcare, business, and government.
Since InterSystems overhauled its training program using Open edX and Appsembler’s Virtual Labs platform, the company has been able to use the additional feedback it received through the extra training available to make changes to its product.
The three year process of retooling its software training program took InterSystems from a mainly on-site program to an online, interactive experience that allows learners to access training whenever it works best for them. Here’s how they did it.
Challenges: Scaling and innovating training programs
Prior to investing in virtual training lab environments, InterSystems held trainings in-person via Instructor Led Training (ILT). But this method surfaced some unwanted headaches for the team like costly travel expenses and web of logistical coordination between InterSystems and their learners.
With a large network of thousands of employees, partners, and customers scattered across the globe, scaling their training was proving to be difficult. Their in-person training strategy also didn’t provide the company with the fuel it needed to rapidly scale and extend its’ software to customers as new developments released.
That’s when the InterSystems leadership team decided to develop an online and immersive training program to supplement the existing learning approach.
The solution: Delivering individualized Virtual Labs
InterSystems decided to engage with Open edX and Appsembler’s Virtual Labs platform to help them develop individualized and hands-on virtual training environments. These labs allow learners to test and develop applications on a physical or virtual machine, without needed any assistance from IT or impacting infrastructure.
InterSystems used Docker Container technology to enable students to access these individualized environments no matter where they are in the world. This instant accessibility reduces the need for learners or trainers to have to travel to (and be constrained by) a physical classroom.
Personalized lab environments also inspire better learning outcomes. “The biggest advantage of using Virtual Labs has been our ability to isolate learning for our audience,” said Doug Foster, Manager of Online Learning at InterSystems. “We can preconfigure each environment to keep them focused on learning objectives – not all of the other stuff.”
Virtual labs help trainers like Doug overcome some of the challenges of delivering modern software training, such as declining attention span and information overload, by removing IT and admin distractions.
The Results: 100 individualized labs running at the same time
Currently, you can expect to find up to 100 individualized virtual IT labs running at the same time across the majority of the company’s courses. InterSystems has plans to double that amount in the near future and even offers virtual training labs at its conferences –– such as its annual InterSystems’ Summit –- allowing prospective customers and partners to try out its solution in an immersive, real-world environment.
Due to InterSytems’ ability to scale up its training program across the globe at a much faster pace, more users now have the chance to access software training and understand the product. Intersystems has been able to use the additional feedback it has received from learners to improve its product, bringing everything full-circle.
If you’re interested in finding about more about how InterSystems has been able to deliver training at scale using Virtual Labs, check out the full case study.