When it comes to customer renewal and expansion, there’s no question that training and education is strongly correlated. Skilljar customers regularly report on trained cohorts of customers renewing and expanding at a higher rate than untrained customers. On one hand, it’s useful to uncover this correlation in your own organization, but truly innovative companies are taking it one step further and using customer education data as an indicator of customer health.
Why use customer training data as an indicator for customer health?
1. Customer training accelerates time to value
What if you could reduce onboarding time and accelerate time to value at scale? Customer training programs, particularly those hosted on platforms like Skilljar, have been seen to accelerate the onboarding process. For customers, the benefit of having a clear and concise pathway to achieving value and courses available for them to reference any time goes a long way. In fact, after implementing a training program, companies report that onboarding time is reduced by as much as 50%. For business focusing on customer renewal, reduced time to value means more opportunities to foster expansion and advocacy. In the subscription economy, every day matters.
2. Customer training increases product adoption
According to the Coastal Cloud 2018 Customer Success Industry Report, Customer Success executives cite product adoption as the number one challenge in the customer journey. Customers who don’t use a product are unlikely to see value and renew. Educating customers has clear impact on product adoption, and industry data shows 135% increase in product usage from a trained user.
With this in mind, looking to customer training as an early indicator of customer health is powerful. It’s one of the earliest predictors of customer health down the line, occurring in the very first weeks of the customer lifecycle.
How can you use customer training data as an indicator for customer health?
If you’re using customer success software to calculate customer health scores, using customer training data as an input for those scores is a great way to get started. Make sure the systems that you are using all integrate well with your CRM (e.g. Salesforce), which will often be the source of truth for all customer-related data. Otherwise, you’ll be forced to manage and join data from disparate systems. Skilljar customers benefit from our Salesforce integration and strong partnerships with both Gainsight and Totango to do this.
Once you have systems configured, the next challenge is determining which inputs from training can be used in your customer health score. Here are some good examples to consider:
- Training breadth
What percentage of users in a given account are engaging in educational activity? If you’re assigning licenses or selling subscriptions to a training portal, how many of them were purchased, and how many of them are in use?
- Training depth
How much training are your customers taking? If you offer multiple courses, what is the average number of courses that each contact at a customer account take? How many hours have customers invested in training?
- Training feedback
Many training programs ask customers for feedback scores. Consider which customers are rating your training favorably and enjoying the training experience.
If you offer a certification as part of your training program, how many contacts at a customer account have gotten certified on your product?
- Training Investment
How much money has a customer invested in training for their team?
For more information, check out our comprehensive online guide to Customer Education.