How Telkonet Built an Online University to Fuel the Growth of their Reseller Business Cathal Small Published on June 18, 2018 Telkonet developed the EcoSmart platform, an energy management system that responds intelligently to energy usage and preferences. Initially educating reseller partners through face-to-face sessions, Telkonet needed to scale product training delivery so they could grow their revenue and support their fast-growing partner base. They turned to LearnUpon's powerful learning management system to deliver, manage and track their training. With LearnUpon’s support, Telkonet has built a sustainable product training program delivered through their online university. It ensures their partners are fully qualified to sell, install and use their products and has resulted in a significant reduction in support queries. “When our partners complete online training prior to installing our products, support requirements are reduced by 90%. That means only 1 out of every 10 sites requires additional installation support when online training has been completed." Greg Woodliff, Telkonet's Director of Operations Telkonet + LearnUpon: The Highlights Educating partners the manual way Telkonet wanted to grow their reseller business while maintaining high partner standards. But two things stood in their way. Firstly, training partners face-to-face, with tutorials built in Articulate Storyline, was no longer sustainable. Secondly, they had no visibility on how their training was performing. They needed to find a scalable way to train partners that enabled them to: Deliver training to partners on-demand and at scale Accurately track training performance Certify and re-certify partners after they’d successfully completed training A new way of delivering training that met their needs would ensure their product training produced qualified partners. This, in turn, would protect their reputation by helping their partners deliver excellent service to the end users of their products. Scaling product training With no formal online training strategy in place, Telkonet decided to do some research. After investigating multiple systems, they discovered LearnUpon’s learning management system would improve the training experience for their staff and partners. It provided them with what they needed to grow their partner business. Ultimately Telkonet chose LearnUpon because it would: Scale efficiently as they trained more and more partners Provide them with a dedicated Customer Success Specialist and support team to help them get the best results from their training Be easy to use from both an admin and learner perspective Enable them to deliver and track training in one system Allow them to create a branded corporate university through which partners access training Support SCORM 1.2 and Tin Can course content built in Articulate Storyline Support multiple languages Enable them to certify and recertify partners automatically Allow them to generate reports and capture feedback from their partners to track and analyze training performance Offer scalable pricing plans that matched their budget Growing a partner business with training Telkonet is reaping the benefits of using LearnUpon LMS to deliver partner training. A positive experience for the business, it enables them to deliver a more enriched training experience. Their support requirements have been reduced by 90%. And by incentivizing partners to complete training through their EcoSmart University, they’ve increased course completion rates and progressed their partners’ product knowledge beyond the basics. "Face-to-face training is enhanced because of the training partners complete online before live sessions. Partners are able to ask more informed questions, and they're able to discuss topics more in-depth because they've already covered all of the basics." Jacob Hittler, Telkonet’s Customer Support Team Manager Access to training data allows them to track if their partners are qualified to sell, install and use their products. If there’s an issue with an engineer during an installation, they can quickly check the LMS to see if that partner has completed the necessary training and identify if additional training is required. “It’s easy for me to check what training they have or haven’t completed. It’s a beautiful thing being able to track that.” Bridget Donofrio, Telkonet’s eLearning Developer Telkonet use surveys to gather invaluable feedback from partners that enables them to continuously improve training. Partners tell them what they’re doing right and what they could be doing better. Using LearnUpon’s course re-versioning and licensing functionality they quickly update and improve their courses to get even better results. Telkonet consistently hear that their partners find the courses easy to navigate - an important element that removes barriers to accessing training and ensures partners complete courses - on desktop or on the move, via mobile device. The business’s training and marketing departments also discovered how delivering certified partner training supports them. It builds and protects their brand. Partners are educated on how to present and talk about products so they’re aligned with Telkonet’s brand values and vision. “Taking these courses is a way to ensure that partners are describing Telkonet correctly. We provide energy management platforms, not simply thermostats. Training partners on how to market and talk about our products is really important.” Bridget Donofrio, Telkonet’s eLearning Developer Telkonet is constantly impressed with the level of support they receive from LearnUpon’s Customer Support team and their dedicated Customer Success Specialist. Any queries they raise are resolved quickly and they have access to a knowledgeable, experienced team to guide them whenever they need it. “I love LearnUpon’s support. I love the people. So much in this world boils down not to the company, but the people.” Bridget Donofrio, Telkonet’s eLearning Developer The success of their partner training program has inspired Telkonet to expand their training efforts to their employees and customers. Training delivered to their sales and support teams will keep their product knowledge up-to-date. While training delivered to their customers will keep them happy, engaged, and experiencing the benefits of Telkonet’s products.