The ultimate bottom line for every IT business is to generate higher ROI while keeping investments within the margin.
Software training focused on uplifting your employees and partners with the right product understanding is not just a prolific investment but also a well-planned strategy to yield higher ROI.
To make sure your investment stays within the decided budget, we have compiled the best cost-control practices for your growing software training costs. With cloud-based product training, we introduce you to the most optimal cost-control tools and techniques that can be implemented right away without any complex setup.
Cloud-based training has many upsides compared to the traditional in-person training. However, it is necessary to note that you need to be very mindful about your cloud resource consumption and setting up the right infrastructure within the budget. There are numerous instances of VMs (virtual machines) being left running in the background or the unused and abandoned demo environments. Instances like these are the very demons that could haunt your software training programs as well!
G2 stats suggest that over a third (over 33.33%!) of businesses exceed their cloud budget by up to 40%. To make sure you aren’t one of them, you can deploy some of the following Cost Control Practices for your software training initiatives.
1 Adopt Cloud-based platform for Software Training
Integrate more technology into your training processes. Organizations across the world relying heavily on software training for product-led growth now prefer technology-based training over traditional in-person training techniques. And they are witnessing astounding results!
The most notable evidence comes from leading businesses like IBM and Cisco. While IBM saved $200 million, Cisco successfully brought down training costs by 40-60% by switching to technology-based learning.
When you go with cloud-based technology for your software training, you get:
- An easy-to-use interface
- Remote and self-paced learning
- Minimal technical configuration
- Better cost control
- Hands-on practical learning
- Better training retention
2 Set an estimated training budget and monitor costs
When there is no estimated budget, getting off-track is easy. For cloud-based training, setting up a budget and implementing strict cost-control practices are crucial since resource consumption can often get out of hand owing to use of heavy resources, abandoned environments, running VMs, etc.
Your cloud-based software training platform should be able to show daily analytics and cost reports for you to track usage and apply the necessary strategies.
3 Automate lab lifecycle end-to-end
The one thing that makes the cloud super viable is the automation feature. Get all manual tasks automated to avoid any human error. As discussed above, leaving VMs running is a common mishap leading to outrageous cloud costs. By automating lab life cycle, you can ensure that you allocate labs for each trainee which automatically gets deleted after the course completion – leaving behind no forgotten VMs or resources running in the background generating cumulative costs.
4 Build once and reuse
Instant lab deployment and easy distribution are some key aspects of virtual IT labs-based training. But there’s more to it! As you keep coming with updated training content for your latest software updates, you can use templates. These help in spinning up environments quickly rather than creating them from scratch every time you make a change to your software training program. This not only saves time but also cloud resources by avoiding repetitive usage in course creation.
5 Cost management practices
To put your cost-control strategy into action, you need some effective cost management features that ensure everyone stays on the same page when it comes to sticking to the budget. While metrics help you track your cloud usage, you also need reminders or alerts when you hit the set consumption limit.
With CloudLabs virtual training platform, you can enable your product training with effective cloud cost management practices. Leverage our novel cost-optimization features for recurrent training sessions without ever having to worry about budgets.
- Credit-based allocation: With this feature, as you decide on a fixed budget for your cloud consumption during training, you can trigger alerts to users indicating their consumptions for the day and remaining cloud credits for the rest of the program.
- Automated VM Uptime: While overseeing training program, trainers and administrators get access to an easy-to-use CloudLabs self-service portal which can be used to control lab usage for individual users. We also have the lab uptime feature, for admins to decide an estimated duration for running VMs after which the VM will shut down automatically.
- VM Agent: It is a common phenomenon for trainees to leave VMs running just like their laptops. However, the only difference between leaving tabs opens and that with VMs is the running cloud resources shooting your cloud bills through the roof. With the VM agent, CloudLabs ensures that any VM left running beyond a set duration, for example 15 minutes, is shut down immediately to prevent cumulative cloud costs.
- Optimized lab Infrastructure for cost control: All major cloud providers like AWS, Microsoft Azure, and GCP, offer certain custom policies. For example, the Azure RBAC and policy can be used to restrict trainees from deploying heavy cloud resources. You can leverage these policies and keep your cloud expenses in check. Trainees will function within a set of defined infrastructure, ideal for your requirements and your budget.
6 Pre-built self-paced learning courses
Cloud-based technologies promote self-paced learning and allows the flexibility to attend training anytime from anywhere. Virtual IT training labs help trainees manage their roles more efficiently by completing courses as per their schedules and existing knowledge. The pre-packaged labs with step-by-step guides help users complete their assignments and inbuilt assessments enable skill validation – without the need for a dedicated instructor.
As this eliminates the need for an instructor, the instructor fees get totally stricken off the training budget. Furthermore, as we all know, the ability to learn at one’s own pace promotes learning efficiency among trainees by allowing them to understand the concept, delve deeper into the issue based on their interests, and browse through the resources available.
7 Reduce set-up time and maintenance costs
Cloud-based training labs do not require installing any software or on-prem infrastructure. This absence of physical servers reduces your maintenance operations and manpower costs to almost zero.
A virtual IT labs platform like CloudLabs has proven to help organizations reduce the lab provisioning and setup times by up to 90%. You can spin up multiple lab environments simultaneously, and they will be up and running in no time, thanks to the efficiency and agility of cloud computing.
Over that, it is also possible to automate the entire setup. All the required resources can be automated beforehand, so the users can concentrate on their software training.
8 Eliminate travel and lodging costs
Training staff, especially for global companies, requires getting them to a physical training facility like a center of excellence (CoE). This includes travel and lodging costs and any other costs associated with logistics. You might be aware of this already, but if you aren’t, your organization is bleeding money.
Cloud-based training eliminates all these costs. Not just that, it also significantly expands your reach, improves training retention, and enables to scale your training capacity at a moment’s notice. It is convenient for you and your employees.
Think it’s too good to be real? We can prove these on a live demo.
Make your software training a key asset in generating business and meeting your organizational goals.
Jithin Varghese, a Product Manager at Spektra Systems, is known to excel in automating Azure resources and migration planning. As a former Cloud Consultant turned Product Manager, he combines design thinking, analytical prowess, and empathy to drive outstanding customer experiences and facilitates collaboration among cross-functional teams.