JIRA for teams: training and learning and development


Posted by
Thomas BOUDIER

November 4, 2016

It’s always pretty enjoyable to attend any kind of event and get offered food, drinks, goodies and the opportunity to meet up with the right people. When things run smoothly, you don’t even pay attention to it – you just live through it and get exactly what you want from being there. But in order to actually provide this tailored experience, quite a lot of work has to be done in the background, involving various people, various skillsets and a number of tasks.

And just like you want your customers to have a good experience whenever you invite them to an event, we at Valiantys want our customers to have awesome experiences. And our Atlassian training is no different. And guess which tool we’re using to manage that? You got it (it’s in the title of this blog post, after all): JIRA.

Organising Atlassian training sessions

Consultants in all of our five offices (Paris, London, Toulouse, Lausanne and Montréal) deliver training. Some sessions are organised in our offices and held publicly, which is an opportunity for participants to meet with other Atlassian users and discuss use cases and capabilities of the tools. Other sessions are organised at the client’s site, which is the chosen solution when more people require a more customised, off-track training experience. Here’s how we organsie both in JIRA.

We have two JIRA issues types in our JIRA project Training Management for these two cases: one is Public session, and the other is Private session.

The sales team handles individual registrations to public training sessions, whereas the project managers take care of setting the right date for each private training course.

In both cases, the purchase order is the origin for starting a project, and everything is managed in a JIRA project Purchase Orders, just like our other services. But these issues can be easily linked to the Public sessions and Private sessions issues with JIRA’s linking feature.

We also have to print training materials for each participant, and goodies such as Valiantys pens, copy books, mints or even spinning tops. When the session is public, the admin team books a training room the right size and with the right equipment, and makes a reservation at a nearby restaurant. We care about the people we do business with, and we’re happy creating opportunities to have more casual talks and spend quality time.

This is followed in detail thanks to a workflow in the project Training management, which the admin team can easily navigate thanks to a Kanban board.

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Sometimes participants request a certificate, and we must make sure it’s generated and delivered as quickly as possible. Also, we’re interested in the continuous improvement of our training delivery, hence we ask attendees to fill a feedback form, which we’ve then got to analyse. These are other actions we can follow-up in the Kanban board.

And in all cases, the finance team has to generate an invoice for the service delivered. Here we’re back to our project Purchase Orders to make sure of where we’re at on this side.

The difficulties we meet

The workflows, however, can be pretty complex. There are several variables our system needs to take into account. These include:

  • Whether the training is conducted publicly or privately
  • Whether a private course is part of a bigger project or a one-off order
  • Whether several customers from the same company want to attend the same public session
  • Whether course attendees are people coming from different places

And in all cases, several of our people, from different teams, have to take action in a sequence.

Everything financial for training is followed in the same place, as for any other of our services (the project Purchase Orders mentioned above). We don’t want our admin teams to lose time trying to find out which JIRA issues relate to the courses they need to handle, and which ones belong to another office. This is true for the sales and service delivery teams, too.

On top of all this, since we’re part of the Atlassian Authorized Training Partner programme, we sometimes deliver Atlassian University courses, in which instance we have to synchronise with Atlassian to deliver their courses, following their outlines, with their courseware and on their training platform.

Why JIRA is the right tool for this

Here at Valiantys, JIRA has allowed us to streamline this whole process.

There are two workflows, one for each of the main cases: public session and private sessions. This allows us to deal with the specificities of each.

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We also have two Kanban boards: one for the admin team, which handles most of the organisational actions, and one for the delivery team, which needs to follow up on fewer steps (Has the training been confirmed? Is everything ready? Has it been delivered? Did we get all the required feedback?) Thanks to them, we’re always sure of where we’re at with the logistics, and what still remains to be done.

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Our Kanban boards feature five quick filters to display only the issues linked to one office at any time – this visibility and transparency works better for everyone. They also contain a subtask issue type Course participant below Public session to enable us to follow-up on individual course participants. We can then send customised invitations, see at a glance the amount of training materials to be printed and gauge the size of the room we need to reserve. We are also able to add links everywhere it’s relevant between the projects Training management and Purchase orders.

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All the aspects of our Atlassian training sessions can be managed in JIRA: registration, logistics, delivery, continuous service improvement and finance. And it seems to work, since customer satisfaction is high, participants become knowledgeable and autonomous, and they recommend us to their colleagues.

Discover how Atlassian tools can help you easily manage a software training session organisation process, among other things – contact us today.