Power Systems Training Options are at Your Fingertips
Discover your digital training toolbox
Image by kjekol/getty, retouching by mike novak
By Shirley S. Savage06/30/2020
Virtual training options have multiplied in response to work-at-home directives. A wealth of information and training on IBM Power Systems™ technology, solutions and services are now at your fingertips. A good portion of them are accessible anytime, anywhere and are free of charge.
Work travel may have come to a halt in recent months, but the need for a refresher on Power Systems information certainly has not. Many of the offerings build on years of online presentation and webinar experience. Virtual conferences are a newer vehicle and are proving to be welcome additions to the virtual training world.
Pivoting to Virtual Training
Digital offerings come in many flavors, from customized multiday presentations to easy-to-consume, 10-minute podcasts. No matter the format, all of the offerings are well thought out and designed to be of value to users. In response to client feedback, training creators are tailoring their curriculum to not only address today’s challenges, but also the need for skills that lies ahead.
Without a physical audience, no body language is available to let speakers know that their audience is engaged. So to garner feedback, online presenters are finding ways to determine if their messages are being well received by the online attendees. Webinars that feature online Q&A sessions are a good bellwether of client engagement. “We had 160 questions in one of our Q&A sessions for an IBM Technical University (TechU) online storage presentation,” says Angela Fresne, TechU business development and curriculum manager, IBM. “We’re weaving interactivity into everything we do.”
While many clients view online sessions live, others appreciate the ability to watch content on-demand as their schedules allow. Online presentations make it possible to reach a wider audience as well. Organizations may send only a handful of executives to in-person sessions. With online offerings, business line managers can attend as well, giving them the opportunity to gain valuable insights.
“Online education enables an IT professional to get a needed piece of information and leverage it immediately,” says Larry Bolhuis, president of COMMON. “There’s no waiting to attend a conference session.” Read on to learn about a few of the digital training options available.
TechU Embraces Digital to Keep Professionals Informed
IBM's TechU swiftly moved from physical events to virtual ones during the first half of this year by offering online TechU Talks. This 12-week series of webcasts began in April and finished on July 2. The free series comprised three webcasts a week featuring Power Systems on Tuesdays, storage on Wednesdays and IBM Z® and LinuxONE™ on Thursdays.
“We’re confident that we’re meeting a need for our audience,” says Fresne. “We’ve had thank you’s from clients and business partners for setting up TechU Talks so quickly, and they’re pleased with the quality of the curriculum,” she adds.
In the future, TechU plans to ramp up its digital sophistication. “We’re going to include more interactive elements including hands-on demos,” Fresne notes.
Stay tuned for how TechU continues to evolve.
Enhance Your Skills in any Area With IBM Systems Media Webinars
IBM Systems Media’s monthly webinar programming allows IBM clients to continue their education and find ways to solve business challenges using IBM Power Systems technologies, solutions and services.
“Every month, our online sessions bring industry experts to your home office, some of which may have been planned conference presentations,” says Janine Donnelly, IBM Systems Media webinar director. “There is no cost to attend our sessions and they’re available both live and on-demand,” she notes.
Webinar topics run the gamut from DevOps to modernization, security, cloud, storage and more for both Power Systems and IBM Z platforms. The webinars are presented by IBM Business Partners, ISVs and IBMers. Webinars remain available on demand for 30 days after the initial presentation.
View upcoming live webinars
COMMON Expands Digital Offerings
COMMON (common.org), a worldwide user group focusing on IBM i, is well known for its annual
conferences. However, the organization has featured online learning for many years and is stepping up its virtual offerings to accommodate current workstyles and member needs.
In April, COMMON partnered with IBM to present a free five-part webcast series presented by IBM experts, as well as a six-part series on practical tips and insider tricks about working from home.
COMMON also offers subscription-based bootcamps. These are designed to quickly get new hires up to speed on RPG, IBM i system administration and Domino administration.
IBM CEC Widens its Virtual Offerings
IBM Systems Worldwide Client Experience Centers (CEC) provides a variety of customized virtual offerings to help clients solve their business challenges.
Following stay-at-home directives, CEC quickly expanded its virtual offerings to multiday sessions consisting of comprehensive briefings, workshops and even co-creation engagements, all relating to IBM technology and solutions. CEC added tools such as virtual whiteboarding to its sessions to better serve clients.
As clients adjust their workflows to address new challenges, CEC is expanding its virtual offerings to include a WebEx series providing guidance on managing current workloads. CEC also added an open mic or “ask me anything” format where clients can talk with experts in discussion sessions. The CEC Cloud enables IBM client teams to access live systems to illustrate IBM technology to clients and help them meet current challenges. All of these are offered to clients at no cost.
In late Spring, CEC began offering Deal Clinics to help clients with specific situations as well as five- to 10-minute podcast episodes focusing on certain topics. Again, these services are offered without charge.
CEC makes a point to incorporate suggestions and feedback from clients. “We customize every engagement with clients,” says John J. Zupetz, program director, North America, CEC. Client response to CEC virtual offerings continues to be extremely positive. “When we see sales leaders recommending us to their peers, we know we’re adding value,” he says.
Want more information? Reach CEC at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Shirley S. Savage is a writer and communications strategist. She's fascinated by tech, science, finance, energy and the way innovative people think.