~ Chris Martinez, founder and CEO of DUDE Agency
“It’s an absolute no-brainer to invest in Trainual. In 2 weeks or less, we can get somebody ramped up, put them on the front lines, and start servicing our clients.”
Based in California, DUDE Agency helps digital marketing agencies across the US and Canada take on more clients. Acting as an extension of their agency, the DUDE team provides unlimited web design and development services for a flat rate. That way, these agencies can focus on scaling – without worrying about missing any deadlines.
When we sat down with Chris Martinez, founder and CEO of DUDE, he said the company started in 2017. And it grew much quicker than he expected. In less than a year, his team went from 5 to 35 employees.
“We didn’t anticipate that amount of employee growth,” Chris explained, “So, we only had a training program in place through Google Docs.”
While the existing material was great (a teacher-turned-marketing-extraordinaire crafted it), there were several how-tos still missing. And the system for sharing the documentation wasn’t super effective.
No accountability with Google Docs
Because there was no way to track trainee progress, Chris couldn’t tell where everyone was in the training program. And, more importantly, he had no idea who was ready to start working.
As a result, the process of ramping up a new employee was slow. It took upwards of a month to get someone on the front lines. This was a big problem for his clients, who needed hands on deck now.
“We weren’t able to scale people or integrate people into our company fast enough to accommodate our growth. I needed a solution to bring in employees, get them trained, and put them on the front lines as fast as possible.”
Luckily, he learned about a tool from his friends at Design Pickle. AKA a design firm that used Trainual to scale their company to over 200 employees (in just 3 years).
In just that one conversation, Chris was sold. And he wanted to see if Trainual could help DUDE do the same.
Moving their training to Trainual
According to Chris, he’s usually reluctant to sign up for new software. But Trainual seemed different. For starters, his friends were raving fans. But it also looked easy enough for him to use.
“I’m not a super technical person,” he shared. And he didn’t want to waste time learning a new system that might not be the right fit.
So, Chris signed up for Trainual. And over the following weekend, he put together the first training program. “I started on a Saturday evening. And by Sunday morning, I had the entire program [moved] from Google Docs into Trainual,” he explained.
Thanks to the great content that already existed, it was just a matter of copy and pasting the documentation. Once it was all in one place, Chris could easily go back through and fill any knowledge gaps.
“Trainual is so unbelievably intuitive. You can literally go in and just click some buttons. You’re able to create your own training in a few minutes.”
Now, Chris (and the rest of the team at DUDE) have a full training program. “We just pop in [a trainee’s] email address, they start training right away, and I get status updates when they’ve completed it,” he shared.
Tracking trainee progress
Before, Chris had no idea how far new employees were in their training. He could check in manually. But that wasted a lot of time, and it felt like he was micromanaging his trainees.
Now, Chris can see who’s done with their training, who’s making progress, and who hasn’t started – straight from Trainual. Meaning, he can better manage the constant stream of new employees. And he can move people to the front lines with clients as soon as they’re ready.
“[The completion rates] were a game-changer for us,” Chris explained. “I needed concrete data to show us we’ve got 10 people who started. We’ve got 9 people at 40%. And we’ve got 1 person lagging at 20%. And now I finally have that.”
With Trainual, they’ve been able to cut onboarding time in half. What used to take just over a month now takes 2 weeks or less. So, employees are fully productive faster – and Chris can continue growing the business.
“I absolutely guarantee that [with Trainual], you’ll see a 10, 20, maybe even 30x return on your investment per month. Because that’s what we’re experiencing [thanks to the training tool] right now.”
Creating new opportunities
But for DUDE, Trainual is more than just a training tool. It also helps gauge employee engagement. And ensures they deliver their mission to provide new job opportunities to their team in Tijuana, Mexico.
“We created another Trainual, which actually provides promotional opportunities for team members,” Chris explained. “Once they complete this training, they’re eligible for a salary increase or management opportunity.”
Now, the team can see what growth opportunities exist within the company. They have a clear path to get there. And they stay engaged in learning long after their initial training is complete.
Leveraging Trainual in new ways
Since nailing down the initial training and career pathing, Chris has started using Trainual in a new way. Now, he’s incorporating clients.
“I created a Trainual specifically for new clients,” he explained. “It acts as a retention tool and teaches our clients how to better work with us.” And while client training wasn’t a component he initially anticipated, it’s turned into a major benefit.
Because now that his trainees, employees, and clients are all on the same page, they’re fully aligned and deliver flawless results. And flawless execution is exactly what DUDE stands for.