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Customer story

How Hillarys delivers award-winning service by training its people with LearnUpon


completion rate for Hillarys' advisory course


estimated cost savings with online compliance training


audiences receiving training using one solution

When it comes to made-to-measure window furnishings, Hillarys is the household name in the U.K. and Ireland. Operating for 50 years, the business has built a reputation not only for quality blinds, curtains and shutters but also for award-winning customer service.

To keep standards high, the team at Hillarys invests heavily in learning, with its self-employed advisors going through rigorous training. However, with it all done face-to-face, the process was spreadsheet-heavy for training managers and overwhelming for learners. 

Wanting to lighten the load for everyone, the team switched tactics. With LearnUpon’s LMS, Hillarys is embracing a blended learning model that enables its trainers and self-employed advisors to do what’s important – train efficiently and effectively.

“LearnUpon is simplicity done well. It does what we want our LMS to do, but it's also easy for our people to access, use, and really engage with our training.”

Lisa Slack

Head of Product Development at Hillarys

The Challenge: Too much training, too little time 

With 1,200 self-employed local advisors to train on thousands of product details and at-home services, Hillarys needed to ensure the learning process was a well-oiled machine. That’s why in 2018, Lisa Slack, Head of Product Development at Hillarys, decided to re-evaluate how the company trained.

Originally running a high-intensity 13-day in-person course, Lisa remarked “there was a lot of information to understand” and, although all valuable, it was too much for the advisors to take in. Added to this was a lack of visibility with inaccurate records and a reliance on manual tracking. 

To make everything more efficient a plan was devised: invest in a learning solution that would enable the team to not only deliver and track large parts of the training online but also create a user-friendly experience for learners.

The Solution: Efficient training done in a learner-friendly way

For Hillarys, LearnUpon is the perfect solution, enabling the team to restructure learning in a more efficient, streamlined, learner-friendly way. 

Moving to a blended learning model, Lisa and her team divided the training offered. With introductory basics happening online through LearnUpon’s LMS, and other parts in-person, training has now become a much more digestible task for their advisors. 

Critically, it’s all super simple to do too. As Lisa says, “We have 1,000+ advisors, all across the country and with all different levels of experience with technology. We didn’t want them to have to learn how to use the LMS”, but with LearnUpon’s intuitive user experience, it’s easy for learners to log in and use.

Seeing results through reporting

The streamlining of training mixed with a user-friendly solution is having a measurable impact, and importantly, the Hillarys can see and track that.

“If we look at compliance, like GDPR and child safety, if we tried to do training without the LMS, it would have cost us probably £100,000 in just meeting time, people hours, organizing - all the stuff that you have to do. Now that it's all online, we no longer have to spend that time and cost. ”

Lisa Slack

Head of Product Development at Hillarys

Using LearnUpon’s reporting suite, the team members now know what’s happening, who’s engaging, what people are watching, and more.

“Before the LMS, we didn't have visibility. Now we're reporting on key metrics. The day I saw 80% completion of an advisory course within the due date, I was elated! It told me we can put courses online and have people engage with it.”

Lisa Slack

Head of Product Development at Hillarys

Reports have also taken away the headache of manual recording, in a world of GDPR compliance. Instead of being paper-driven, it’s now all recorded within the LMS – no human intervention needed, and a more sustainable way of tracking.

Expanding learning, expanding the impact

For Hillarys, LearnUpon also gave them a unique opportunity to broaden the training on offer. 

Using the Learning Portals functionality, the HR team crafted a learning journey that’s tailored to their employees. Living in its own distinct environment, it’s a place where employees from Hillarys can also train and grow, but with everything  still managed in the one place – LearnUpon.

“We have three portals. One for the self-employed advisors, one for our employees and HR and one for another brand. They’re all branded and our team can switch and copy courses between portals to train different audiences. It works really well. ”

Lisa Slack

Head of Product Development at Hillarys

The future: Enhance training to continue a great customer experience

Hillarys don’t want to stick to the status quo. With every new made-to-measure product, they’re adding new training to support their advisors and customers, and with their current courses, they’re investigating how to make it more engaging for their learners.

“We've seen some really good results with LearnUpon - cost and time savings. Our next strategy is to enhance what we’ve got with new content and a new way of working and the LMS is helping facilitate that. ”

Lisa Slack

Head of Product Development at Hillarys