The Secret to Project Success

Categories: Cloudera University Success Stories

We’re a bunch of data nerds at Cloudera. We love to get data and extract some value out of them. We do this with our customer interactions. We asked ourselves and the market at large, what makes one customer more successful than another? One of the strongest correlations we found is training. Customers that take training classes are far more likely to succeed in achieving their goals.

Throughout my career as a programmer, I’ve had to learn many different technologies. My resumé looks like an alphabet soup of what was and what is the current technology. Many of those technologies I learned while plowing through a book on the subject. I admit, it wasn’t the most efficient way of learning. If the book didn’t cover a subject, I knew nothing about it. If I had a question or didn’t understand something, I had to reread it and try to figure it out.

In my opinion, in-person training is the best way to learn a new technology. If you don’t understand a feature you can raise your hand and ask a question or see the instructor after class. This reminds me of my schooling, but in fact it applies to professional learning too. There are classes where one can focus on their company’s projects and aspirations running private training classes onsite. The instructor can tailor the material to the company’s own specific use cases.

The instructor makes all the difference in the world. Their experience and mastery of the subject translates into a great learning experience. The materials that are used in class make the learning possible and shows the best practices that one should model. All of this comes from choosing the right vendor for training. World-class training from a world-class training vendor ensures that no money or employees’ time are wasted.

A project’s success is directly correlated to how effective the developers and analysts are with the technology. The difference between knowing how a feature is built and reinventing the wheel can be hours or days. The difference between implementing a feature incorrectly due to a lack of knowledge or understanding can be months. A well-trained staff can mean more than the success or failure of a project. It can mean a project that slips months and costs many times the original budget.

Let’s take a look at a situation showing how training rescued a company’s troubled project:

I once taught at a company that was five months into a project. The delay in bringing me in wasn’t because the engineers weren’t dedicated, smart or working hard; they were hitting issues that required training on the technology that weren’t covered comprehensively in books. They realised that they needed real-world experience and help from an instructor. I was privileged to provide that experience and tailor the lecture to their pain points. I spent time beforehand to learn about their project to give them some tips on how I’d engineer a solution.

For that class, I had 10 students. Luckily, a significant amount of their code and design was salvageable although they did lose a significant amount of time and money and risked having the project cancelled.

Learning Hadoop from a book isn’t for the majority of people, instead learning it from an instructor is applicable to a much wider audience. Cloudera instructors are able to get organizations up to speed quickly and with high success rates. The classes are focused on the technologies and skills a team needs to accomplish their roles, enabling our customers to get value faster from their data. Training isn’t just about learning a new technology; it’s the difference between success and failure of a project.


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