Sandi Lin

Sandi Lin started Skilljar after spending years nearly four years at Amazon because she wanted to find a way to improve customer interactions.
Her company makes a customizable customer training platform for software companies and has signed on big customers like Tableau, Verizon, and Zendesk.
It’s seeing demand skyrocket in the remote work era as companies are quickly looking to connect with customers digitally, and is having what one of its investors calls its “Zoom moment.”
Online education and training is an effective way for businesses to engage with their user base, Lin said, especially in this moment when all customer interaction is online.
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As a senior product manager at Amazon in customer facing roles, Sandi Lin always felt like there was a disconnect between her customer interactions and the product training those customers would receive.

With the belief that she could create a better system, she took a leap of faith and left Amazon in 2013 to start her own company. She’s since built Skilljar into a platform that allows companies to customize their own customer training programs. Skilljar got its start by participating in the TechStars accelerator program in 2013 and has raised $20 million at a $46 million valuation from investors including T-Mobile founder John Stanton’s Trilogy Equity Partners.

Since launch, Skilljar has signed on big customers like Tableau, Zendesk, and Verizon. Now it’s seeing its demand skyrocket in the coronavirus-related remote work era as companies are quickly looking to train and connect with customers digitally. The company’s growth prompted one investor to describe Skilljar as having its “Zoom moment.”

With customer interactions all moving online for the foreseeable future, Lin said companies are relying more than ever on their customer training teams to engage with new and existing customers to drive product adoption and customer success. Online classes and training are one way to do that.

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“Executives are now relying on their customer training teams to be the frontline,” Lin told Business Insider.

Skilljar provides templates for businesses to build online training programs for their customers, including webinar style courses, quizzes, and live video training in a self contained website. It also integrates with tools like Zoom, WebEx, Salesforce, Box, and other customer facing tools that businesses use.

So when customers go to Tableau’s online learning academy or Zendesk’s training website, they’re powered by Skilljar behind-the-scenes, though the company’s branding is rarely displayed on the page.

Skilljar has had increased interest and demand amid the pandemic

Lin said she’s noticed that customers that already used Skilljar now use it even more — in some cases companies have done five times the amount of virtual training than normal to accommodate what previously was done in person. Some customers like Tableau have opened their virtual training tools to everyone for free, whereas it’s normally a service reserved for paying customers.

It’s not just software companies that sell to corporate offices that have to rethink customer education right now, Lin …read more

Source:: Business Insider


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