Bringing Training to the Workplace

Ensuring delegates can maximise learning on the day.

Hamilton Rentals helps QA national training company provision delegates with the desktop technologies they need – anywhere in the UK.

 

Background

Transforming performance through learning
One of the UK’s leading IT and business skills training companies, QA offers an unparalleled portfolio of learning solutions to both private and public sector organisations.

With 22 UK-wide training centres, state-of-the-art apprenticeship and consulting academies, and a flexible choice of online learning solutions, last year QA trained over 285,000 people and served over 5,000 businesses.

Today, QA offers an impressive catalogue of digital, technical and professional skills training and works in partnership with a number of universities and higher education institutions.

In addition to its dedicated centres, QA also delivers training direct at customers’ sites. Providing a highly cost-effective solution for organisations that need to train multiple people on key topics, on-site classroom training allows companies to tailor the approach to course content to their exact needs.

But executing delivery excellence is no easy task for the scheduling teams at QA who are responsible for coordinating trainers, equipment, and resources to each customer site. For them, ensuring that everything is set up so that delegates can get down to learning from the off is a top priority.

That’s especially the case when it comes to ensuring every delegate has a PC or laptop that gives them instant access to the course materials they’ll need each day.

The Challenge

Flexible, Scalable, On-site delivery
Predicting how many on-site courses will run, and where in the UK, is a difficult task for the scheduling teams at QA.

“While some customers contact us well in advance to schedule their on-site training programmes, all too often we find ourselves handling short notice requests from organisations that want us to provide everything their delegates need – including laptops and PCs,” explains the Business Applications Scheduling Manager at QA.

“Course durations and delegate numbers can vary greatly, and that’s another big challenge for us as we need to be able to accommodate any customer IT requirements as part of our service.”

This unpredictability of demand makes it difficult for QA to maintain a dedicated IT team or equipment in readiness for customers. Added to which, the complexities of managing kit out to customer sites, and back again, and ensuring everything is correctly installed in readiness for the start of each course, all adds up to a significant additional logistics challenge for the QA scheduling teams.

“With customer demand for an end-to-end on-site solution growing, we decided to outsource every aspect of the IT element to a specialist hire company that could accommodate our every need. That’s when we began working with Hamilton Rentals – and over the past eight years, the relationship has gone from strength to strength.”

The Solution

Service that’s Responsive, Streamlined and Reliable
Today the QA scheduling teams use a simple streamlined process to request the laptops and PCs they need to support customer training requests.

“My teams advise Hamilton Rentals what equipment is required, and when and where it needs to be delivered – together with any special requirements – and they take care of everything else,” confirms QA’s Business Applications Scheduling Manager.

Following an equipment request, Hamilton Rentals configures the required hardware systems, loading a QA image, and take care of any special networking or cabling requests. Everything is then delivered to the customer’s site and set up in the training room, in readiness for learners. At the end of the course, Hamilton handles the pack-up and collection of the IT equipment on behalf of QA.

“Hamilton Rentals have worked closely with us to make the process as fool proof as possible, developing a comprehensive online booking form and checklist that captures our every requirement. That includes things that can sometimes get overlooked – like whether a particular network switch is required.”

It’s this partnership approach and commitment to ensuring that QA’s customer gets the best possible experience that has proved invaluable over the years.

“Everyone here – including myself – feels comfortable picking up the phone and talking to Hamilton about any aspect of the service, and where process improvements can be made. We don’t think of them as a service provider – they’re very much an extension of our team.”

The Outcome

Keeping Customers Happy
With Hamilton Rentals taking care of equipment provisioning and set up, the QA scheduling teams are free to focus on coordinating the delivery of a smooth-running on-site training event.

“For us, working with Hamilton’s gives us peace of mind that the right kit will be in the right place, at the right time – including spare machines as a backup. For customers, this means that on the day, everyone can get on with the job in hand – learning and skills expansion.”

Last year, Hamilton Rentals prepared and delivered over 6,000 assets to QA customer locations, taking care of every aspect of the technical set up and logistics involved.

“A further advantage of working with Hamilton Rentals is that we don’t have to worry about keeping up with the latest desktop technologies. Hamilton regularly refresh the devices we use, ensuring that whatever they ship is powerful enough and reliable enough to cope with even the most demanding course materials,” she continues.

Recently, there’s been a growing preference for the provision of powerful laptop devices which take up less space on delegate desks, compared to desktop PCs,
yet still deliver the powerful functionality today’s course programmes require.

“We regularly consult with Hamilton Rentals to ensure we move our customer offering with the times. The change to using laptops is just one example – everything today is becoming much more ‘plug and play’, and Hamilton simply adjust their service delivery to reflect that.”

 

Why Hamilton Rentals?

While training delivery modes keep evolving, with options like cloud-based learning on-demand and virtual training coming to the fore, demand for classroom-based courses continues to grow.

“Interactive face-to-face training remains an enduring and popular option with customers and delegates, and we see no sign of that changing in the near future.”

Reflecting on the advantages of working with Hamilton Rentals, the scheduling teams at QA are clear on the benefits.

“We know Hamilton will adapt and respond to our evolving needs the moment we ask, and they are just as keen as us to ensure that our customers get the very best training experience possible.”

“We never have to worry about planning to purchase or refresh equipment – we simply rent what we need, when we need it, in line with customer demands.”

“Our relationship with Hamilton Rentals is enduring and successful because its built on mutual respect and openness. Quite simply, it just works.”