Every L&D leader knows there’s power in numbers. It’s one thing to just ship learning content yourself, but if you can bring on a team of subject-matter experts and leverage their skills, you can offer much more engaging and informed learning experiences.
This isn’t just the case for your internal teams, either. If you can provide every one of your partners with great customer education content, you can make sure your clients get the learning experiences they truly need and deserve.
I’ve been writing a lot about customer education lately, so it was a real pleasure to chat to Loc H. Nguyen, Director of Customer Education at Bluescape Software. Loc talked me through the challenges of offering a diverse range of customer learning content, and his secret weapon to help clients get the most out of their investment in Bluescape.
Read on to find out how Bluescape Software solved the partner enablement puzzle.
We began our conversation with Loc describing the biggest challenge he faces as Director of Customer Education: offering a diverse range of learning content.
“At Bluescape Software, we offer a virtual work platform,” said Loc. “We operate via a web app as well as on large-format touch screen displays. We cover all the bases when it comes to hybrid work, offering tools for both in-person and virtual work. I was tasked about three years ago to build Bluescape University, which at that point was just a collection of ‘how-to’ videos.”
“Since then, we’ve built out an entire ecosystem called Bluescape Learning, which encapsulates our online content and our video content, as well as our technical writing.”
So, what keeps Loc up at night when it comes to customer education? “The main challenge for us is this: how do we build a diverse range of content so that our audience of customers always has the option to pick and choose the type of content they’re looking to consume?”
“We’re firm believers in the fact that modern learning involves the learner picking and choosing what they want to consume, versus us as trainers or educators forcing content on them. This is the case for customers too.”
This learner-first philosophy is one of the cornerstones of Collaborative Learning. And as Loc explained, it’s a critical part of Bluescape’s approach to scaling partner enablement, too.
We’re firm believers in the fact that modern learning involves the learner picking and choosing what they want to consume, versus us as trainers or educators forcing content on them. This is the case for customers too.
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Alongside this challenge of offering diverse customer education content, Loc is also working on another big challenge: scaling partner enablement as Bluescape grows its client base. As he explains, it’s all about building a team.
“Over recent years, we at Bluescape have come to realize that in order to scale our influence, we need to have partners out there to reach out to our customers to offer support,” says Loc. “This helps us to deliver this customer education at a more scalable level.”
“Our Partner team was tasked with building out this program itself. As the Customer Education team, we supported this by building out the content that would serve as a foundation for the partner enablement part.”
For the Bluescape Customer Education team, this was no easy task. “We didn’t have a partner enablement program before, so the effort to scale out the program and develop the content at the same time was a huge and heavy lift. It involved subject-matter experts from the support organization, the engineering team, and our product team. It was a real team effort.”
“The most difficult part of this for us was: how can we work with this diverse range of subject-matter experts to understand what’s in their minds, translate this into course content, and make that content resonate with people across different departments?”
As Loc explains, there was only one solution to this partner enablement puzzle.
How can we work with this diverse range of subject-matter experts to understand what’s in their minds, translate this into course content, and make that content resonate with people across different departments?
For Loc and his team, great customer education resources are the key to making sure Bluescape partners are selling and implementing the company’s solutions.
“We offer a huge spectrum of customer education content for our partners to consume, depending on the users they’re serving. You could go and take the certification course on how to use the Bluescape web app, or how to train others to use this app. On the opposite side of the spectrum, you could dive into content that’s highly technical.”
“For example, this could be setting up a new instance of Bluescape within an entirely different cloud infrastructure. This would be more relevant for our traditional partners who build and help to stand up new instances, and partners who are simply serving as consultants who want to introduce virtual work to their own customers.”
As Loc explains, he and his team needed to iterate over time to offer this learning content. “The amount of content we needed to produce was monumental, and it’s taken us quite a bit of time to cover all our bases. What we like to do is serve the content to the folks who are actually going to be consuming it, get their feedback, and go back and iterate a couple more times.”
“This process of building customer education content through peer feedback can be quite time-consuming, and quite resource-intensive, but it’s really our bread and butter. It’s how we make our content as useful and as comprehensive as possible for the end user.”
For Loc and his team, Bluescape’s partner enablement strategy has led to a big impact for business development.
For Loc, this partner enablement program driven by customer education content has made a big impact so far–and this is only continuing to grow.
“One of the huge successes of this year-long effort has been the fact that we recently announced our partnership with Amazon,” he says. “We’re now part of the Amazon ecosystem, which is what we’ve been working towards this whole time. When you have a big partner like Amazon coming into the fold, you want to make sure that you’re able to provide them with everything they need in terms of customer education resources.”
“This has been a huge win for our team. We’ve already seen some new deals coming through the Amazon ecosystem, and they’ve been leveraging our partner program to make sure they build that credibility around Bluescape. We’re in the early days of that relationship, but it’s definitely working.”
Along with the rest of the Customer Education team, Loc is excited about what the future will bring–and how he and his team can find creative solutions to common problems.
“The key thing for us going forward with customer education and partner enablement is to unlock our creativity,” says Loc. “I see post-pandemic hybrid work as a whole new world, with different dynamics.”
“None of us have had experiences in this new world, and we have to open up our minds to new ideas, and to augment and adjust the ideas of the past to fit the future. It’s something I’m really looking forward to.”
When you have a big partner like Amazon coming into the fold, you want to make sure that you’re able to provide them with everything they need in terms of customer education resources.
Thanks again to Loc for taking the time to chat!
And if you’re looking for more great content about the challenges of customer education, check out my expert interviews with Sebastian Skarbek of Greenhouse Software about his 3-step customer education playbook, and with Heidi Kirby of DataTrak International about how she delivers great customer education experiences.
Want more peer insights on transforming workplace learning? Check out #CLOConnect, our interview series with top L&D leaders on driving growth and scaling culture through Collaborative Learning. Or you can subscribe (below 👇) to our weekly newsletter to receive our latest posts directly in your inbox.