Software is not something you simply learn once and move on.
Those that are the most serious about their careers and industries have always been lifelong learners, but this has become vital in today's quickly evolving business climate.
To fill this need, the software training company SolidProfessor was formed to give CAD engineers all the training and certification in every major CAD platform they could ever need to stay at the head of their field and at the peak of their powers.
SolidProfessor's Tony Glockler took a moment to tell us about SolidProfessor and some of the newest developments in the field of CAD software and workstations.
What is SolidProfessor? How did your company get started?
SolidProfessor is a team of dedicated engineers and designers creating the best learning experience for CAD and technical engineering software.
SolidProfessor was founded ten years ago by technical engineers and SolidWorks instructors who realized that the traditional classroom learning experience wasn't effective for learning technical CAD software. Students would leave intensive five-day courses on SolidWorks overwhelmed and retain only a fraction of what was taught in class.
To compound that problem, new annual advances in software development provided additional capabilities; but there was no ongoing training process to support users who wanted to get up to speed with the new capabilities. SolidProfessor was created to provide an effective method for people to learn technical CAD software, and to also maintain proficiency as the software evolved.
Who are your main clientele?
Companies, educational institutions and individuals -- anyone who uses CAD software and wants to develop their skills.
You provide businesses, individuals, and institutions with training plans for all the major software. In this industry, how important is it to keep up with progress? How often should people think about re-training or re-certifying themselves?
It's critical to keep up with progress. Software is changing quickly and dramatically, allowing designers to innovate and accelerate time to market. Ongoing learning is essential to staying current with the latest technology and software capabilities.
The word "re-training" does not apply very well to software learning. It's better to think of software learning as a Six Sigma or a continuous learning type of endeavor; people's software skills should continually be improving.
Every time someone runs into a design challenge, there is an opportunity to learn and improve their skills. The concept of a "training event" like attending a class applies to learning a subject once. However, software is rapidly changing and improving, so this requires a different solution to learning other than a one-time training event. Creating a culture of continuous learning is a much more effective approach for technical industries.
Re-certification, which is a good way to verify that someone is maintaining software proficiency, should happen with every new software release as new capabilities are introduced and the software evolves. A user can be re-certified on basic skills through an assessment test, and can be certified on new capabilities by completing a mini-course on the new software functionality, as well as an associated certification test following the course.
What are some of the areas that you keep people updated on?
SolidProfessor keeps our members updated on new software capabilities as well as new best design practices.
How important is organization and workflow for productivity? How much time does a business or an individual stand to save by optimizing their setup?
Great question. It can be difficult to quantify, but organization and workflow are critical for a company to be productive and, more importantly, to compete in the market today.
As the size of a design team grows, so does the complexity of working together. Processes are essential for a team to operate effectively. Your team members can either be your greatest expense or your most valuable asset.
SolidProfessor helps you take control of your team's productivity by rapidly onboarding new users and increasing productivity of your top performers. The administrative tools measure progress and knowledge retention with integrated tracking.