Building a Customer Education Platform from Scratch
Hundreds of innovative companies use Skilljar’s LMS to drive product adoption, increase net retention, and lower the cost to support customers and partners. And we love it when they tell us how easy it is to use and customize for their own purposes.
So when Sara Anderson, Manager of Customer Education for Automox – a cloud-native IT operations platform that helps fix vulnerabilities fast – shared their success story on their company blog, we knew we had to help them get the word out.
Sara said of the new Automox University customer training site, powered by Skilljar:
Automox University is hosted on Skilljar, which is a great learning management system (LMS) that’s easy to use and configure. We selected Skilljar as our LMS given its ease of use and strong reputation in the education space.
Here’s what Sara has to say about building a training platform from the ground up.
This is an excerpt from a blog post by Sara Anderson, reprinted with permission.
How Automox Built a Customer Education Program from Scratch
Educator Sara Anderson’s tips on constructing your organization’s product university from the ground up.
You’ve got an amazing technical product in which you believe, deeply. You know you can solve your customers’ most worrisome pain points. But how can you onboard, engage, and educate your customers quickly and efficiently enough to ensure their confidence?
Furthermore, can you up user retention simply by giving your customers the power to become self-reliant? Our Manager of Customer Education, Sara Anderson, says unequivocally, yes.
Sara set out to design useful content for Automox users through in-person and on-demand channels. Her mantra: Always focus on the customer’s needs.
Here, Sara will walk you through a few easy and engaging ways to onboard, educate, engage, and hold onto your customers.
What is Automox University?
Sara: Automox University (affectionately, AXU) is our go-to training ground for technical product courses. We built it to help our customers onboard and use the Automox product. AXU is hosted on Skilljar, which is a great learning management system (LMS) that’s easy to use and configure.
Who is AXU for?
Sara: Automox University is best for a brand-new customer who’s never used the product before. The intention is to help them get a general idea of all of Automox’s features and functionalities. Recently, a major customer used AXU to onboard its new hires. So, for example, when a new Automox administrator joins the client’s team, they’ll complete their AXU courses to get on board quickly. Then, when they meet with their Automox Customer Success Manager, they’re already able to dig into deeper questions because they’ve been well introduced to our product.
What was your North Star in building out Automox University?
Sara: Well, when I joined Automox, I was a Customer Success Engineer (CSE). I facilitated countless onboarding/training sessions with our customers virtually. While the process was engaging, it was totally unsustainable. Automox was growing so fast, and there weren’t enough of us to properly serve our new users. It was troubling because the Automox CSEs have an advanced technical skillset. It just seemed we couldn’t share the breadth of our knowledge with the customers because we were sort of stuck in this mode of repetitive basic training. We needed a way to get the user set up quickly and to give them the confidence to dig deeper. Guy Lever, the SVP of our customer experience team, knew something had to be done, and he offered me the opportunity to take on this project. We selected Skilljar as our LMS given its ease of use and strong reputation in the education space.
So, given that background, I set my North Star on offloading those repetitive tasks so that our team could provide deeper-dive training for our integrated and advanced customers. The hope was to inspire self-reliance in our customers even faster.
We thought if users could take a 45-minute training session first, by the time they linked up with the CSEs they’d already recognize how to leverage Automox for their unique use cases. So they’d show up with questions based on that value, like, “How can I use a Worklet to manage configurations on all my devices?”
What was your biggest hurdle? How did you circumvent the challenge?
Sara: Oh, there were scores of challenges. Honestly, at first, the biggest challenge was internal. I had to figure out how to market the idea to our own people. So, I had to nail down what we were trying to do and clearly express why it was so important. It can be a huge struggle to share the value of an idea that has yet to be fleshed out. Of course, now everyone’s on board. But during the project planning phase, you don’t yet have a course example to share.
So, to conquer that, I started building an onboarding course. I just thought if I built it, they’d see it. I crafted the first course and followed up by soliciting feedback from my peers. It turned out to be a great way to bridge communication gaps. Everyone was able to voice their concerns and I could assure them their voices were heard.
Plus, it was a fun process. It turned out I was simultaneously building the courses and also creating a collaborative community within Automox. I see that now. At the time, I was just asking for eyes, ears, and advice.
How will you measure the program’s success?
Sara: Well, this is kind of a loaded question. At the start, we hope to see how many customers, overall, are taking courses. Then, we want to check their completion rates. This is where Skilljar comes in handy with its reporting capabilities. When I log into my admin dashboard in Skilljar, I have easy access to information about students like how many students are taking courses and when they are dropping off during a course. I use this information to improve the courseware.
Read the full article at Automox.com.
Learn how Automox brings added value for onboarding and training for customers with Skilljar. Read the case study!