Today, we’re pleased to have a guest blog from Bettina Giemsa, Marketing Program Manager at PTC, which delivers Product Lifecycle Management and design software solutions. Bettina’s blog, “Hello, CAD!”, is part of the PlanetPTC Community. Let Bettina know what other items you would add to her checklist for effective training.
I had a brief discussion with my colleagues around some current PTC University projects and this got me thinking about training in general. I don’t want this post to become a sales pitch for our training offerings, but I think it is safe to say that good training at the right time has a ton of benefits for the users and their organizations. Also, I don’t think that this only applies to software, but plenty of other areas: language training, time-management, and the like.
Anyway, training costs money, no matter what vendor you choose. So you certainly want to make sure you book the right training for your skill level, the most effective teaching format, and the right duration so you end up going home with a good feeling of being a bit wiser.
So, I think that once you get the go-ahead to book some training, you may want to set up a checklist to help you with your evaluation. Here’s my first attempt for such a checklist:
1. Have a clear plan of what you want to achieve with the training. What is your personal goal, and what is your company’s expectation?
2. Assess your skill level: you don’t want to book a class too advanced or too low in level. Check if the vendor offers a free assessment in advance, such as PTC University does with this tool.
3. Define the desired format – classroom instructor-led training (in-person or virtual) or self-paced eLearning (on-demand). There is no good or bad; this depends on your preferences and personality alone.
4. Define the right duration for you. Do you prefer intensive training en bloc over several hours and a few days, or do you prefer doing shorter chunks over a longer period of time? Again, it solely depends on your preferred learning style.
5. Depending on the topic, you may want to do some pre-work to achieve better results during the sessions. Be proactive: read a related book in advance, get familiar with the software interface, etc. Then you will be able to ask questions during the training and enter a meaningful discussion.
These are my top 5. Am I missing any?
What are your experiences in relation to software training or in general? I look forward to hearing from you!
This photo was taken at the free training session PTC University offered at the PlanetPTC Live event in Stuttgart (Germany) in November. Seats were limited, but we allowed a few more people to sit in and listen. In a commercial training, however, the class size should also be part of your evaluation.