Skilljar Coffee Chats showcase different ways customers are using our platform, including demos with special guests. This month’s Customer Education Coffee Chat, hosted by Cutler Bleecker, Skilljar’s Customer Training Manager, featured a conversation with Andy Green, Sr. Director of Customer Education for LogicMonitor.
LogicMonitor is a SaaS-based automated monitoring platform for infrastructure applications and business services. LogicMonitor became a Skilljar customer in 2016, but it wasn’t until Andy’s team conducted a floor-to-ceiling renovation of their customer education platform that it became an invaluable resource for their customers and internal stakeholders.
Overall, engagement in LM Academy is comparably high, especially for a newer refresh like this. On a grading scale, I would give this an A in web outcomes so far. This has almost overnight reinvigorated web enthusiasm for our Academy pages.— SEO Manager, LogicMonitor
Andy explained how their renovation journey included an assessment of the existing platform, a re-evaluation of content, technology, and design, and a plan for transformation. As a bonus for chat attendees, Andy also revealed five ways to gain internal wins and improved relationships with stakeholders. Whew!
So grab your coffee and read the recap of how LogicMonitor set out on their renovation journey – and the amazing results that followed!
Inheriting a Customer Education platform? First, complete an assessment.
One great reason for a renovation is if you are coming into a new role with an existing platform.
When Andy joined LogicMonitor at the end of 2021, his first task was to assess the state of their customer education initiatives. With the rapid rate of growth the company was experiencing (LogicMonitor went from 180 employees in 2016 to over 1,000 by 2021), lack of budget or program identity, and changing customer needs resulting from the pandemic, he concluded their program wasn’t keeping pace. The content was largely focused around onboarding and lacked an organized structure.
Reasons to renovate:
- Their academy was unbranded and using the Skilljar domain, logicmonitor.skilljar.com, which meant there was no tracking available through Google Analytics.
- The platform was focused predominantly on onboarding content, which meant customers were using it as a single-serve experience.
- Low engagement meant low completion rates.
- Three different portals for customers, partners, employees with three different designs meant there was no uniformity or efficiency.
- No brand identity or content roadmap meant the platform was boring and floundering.
If any of these conditions sound familiar, your customer training program might be in need of a renovation!
Our company had grown, but we failed to keep our learning environment and curriculum on pace with updates and new features from both Skilljar and LogicMonitor. What we were offering our customers with the product wasn’t aligned with our learning platform. I felt like we had outgrown it.— Andy Green
Tips from LM Academy’s renovation journey
Andy and his team had their work cut out for them. Here is an overview of their four-part approach, along with lessons learned from their renovation journey.
- Be realistic on expectations – Now is the best time to fully chart your path, giving yourself plenty of time, because life happens.
- Keep it simple – Don’t overcomplicate things, especially at the highest level.
- Make friends – Understand which stakeholders you need to help you on the journey.
- Be willing to adapt – Forces outside of your control will arise. Respond to the ever-changing needs of your audience and deliver a truly valuable learning experience.
Your customer training program needs updates just like a house needs renovations. You need to bring it up to speed. For a learning platform, that means making it more user-friendly (and that goes for your house, too!)— Andy Green
Key pillars for your platform renovation: Content, Design, and Technology
Next, Andy explained the three main pillars of their customer education platform renovation over a horizon spanning eight quarters.
Scaling content quickly
To scale content quickly, Andy needed to create a system that flowed continuous content updates into the Academy.
You want customers to come and know that there’s valuable content being produced on a regular basis.— Andy Green
In addition to establishing a constant flow of content, they needed to update their design to reflect the brand’s identity.
Expand tech stack
Lastly, they needed to broaden their education tech stack (which at the time, was solely Skilljar) to include certification proctoring, exam authoring and security, academy subscriptions, and more.
Scaling content with “byte-sized” learning
LogicMonitor created an engine to scale content into their Academy with the goal of doubling the amount of content by the end of 2022. They accomplished this through the creation of “Learning Bytes,” which are content tidbits crowdsourced from internal teams such as technical support, CSMs, and solution architects. In this way, Andy was able to loop in hundreds of subject matter experts. Each contributed content through short videos using templates his team created in Confluence so the content looked uniform. Users can self-select the videos they want to view based on their needs.
Andy leveraged an incentive program to get teams to participate, which turned out to be a great way for team members to highlight their expertise across the company.
Design for impact
Need a new design for your learning platform? Start by exploring platforms from other Skilljar customers such as Gainsight, GoodData, Smartsheet, Qualtrics, and Pendo to get some inspiration.
It’s ok to take a look at what other Skilljar customers are doing to see the scope and expanse of what you can do with a little bit of skill and some imagination. Just remember your brand and align with it.— Andy Green
Andy recommended using Skilljar’s Walkthrough site to find code snippets that will help you improve your design.
The Skilljar Walkthrough site is a gold mine. It’s a phenomenal way to add some life to your page instantly.— Andy Green
Andy also offered these design tips:
- Have a sandbox domain to test your ideas and themes before going live on your platform.
- Don’t be afraid to mess up. (You can even use ChatGPT to help you fix your code if you are having issues.)
- Build a site map early to consider how users will navigate and flow through your platform. (You can use Lucidchart or simply put pen to paper to get started.)
- Consider your tag structure – Think SEO! (LM Academy has two of the top ten web pages for LogicMonitor and the lowest bounce rates for their site!)
By building a look and feel for our training platform that seamlessly integrated from our corporate homepage, we created an authenticity and established the Academy as a legitimate brand of LogicMonitor.— Andy Green
With a little help from Skilljar’s latest analytics innovation, Andy’s team saw some impressive results proving that trained customers are your best customers!
Certified Customers are satisfied customers! NPS for our customers with at least one certification is 86% higher than users without a certification! Kudos to the team at Skilljar for building the Customer Education Business Impact Template. These new templates are a massive time saver for our team to show the business value results of a customer education program.— Andy Green
Plus, LM Academy saw significant growth across new, active, and returning students, enrollments, and certificates granted, as a result of their platform renovation.
In addition, they saw momentum continuing through Q1 2023 with online certification purchases increasing four-fold.
As we exited Q1 of 2023, we continued to see user engagements increase over a prior period where we had been just flatlining for years – which was awesome.— Andy Green
Metrics related to program efficacy and business impact/revenue are extremely important. But just as important is having stakeholders who can back your program up to team leadership – you want people talking about your program!
Here are Andy’s tips for getting internal team buy-in for your customer training program.
In summary, Andy offered this advice for anyone looking to renovate their customer training program:
- Be realistic in your expectations and give yourself enough time, keep your approach simple, build relationships with those who can help you, and be flexible and willing to adapt along the way.
- To design an effective Skilljar portal, get inspiration from public academies, align with your brand, use Skilljar Walkthrough and ChatGPT for CSS, test themes in a sandbox, create a site map, structure tags, and optimize for SEO.
- Implementing a customer training program that breaks down department silos, provides increased visibility, streamlines processes, promotes a culture of continuous learning, and improves efficiency can lead to improved collaboration, enhanced learning culture, and achievement of goals more quickly and effectively.
We’re so busy just trying to keep our programs afloat. This is a valuable reminder to take a step back to picture what we want it to look like, create a plan for how to get there, communicate goals, and get buy-in.— Cutler Bleecker
See more resources from Skilljar on how to renovate your existing customer training program and share your success with stakeholders:
How to Structure Your Course Catalog in Skilljar ( A before/after experience including tips and lessons learned from Skilljar customer, Solver)
Skilljar Walkthrough Site (Browse ready-to-use HTML templates, code snippets, developer tutorials, and more for a DIY platform renovation)
Skilljar Strategic Insights (Learn how your program’s performance stacks up against others so you can make a case to stakeholders)
Skilljar Business Impact Template (Visualize the impact of customer education on customer satisfaction and retention – your leadership team will thank you!)
These 45-minute sessions are a chance to meet, keep in touch, and share best practices around your Customer Education programs. We regularly schedule guest speakers and Academy tours with other Skilljar customers to get a feel for all of the great things people are doing within their programs.
Join our next coffee chat!