February 26, 2021

You’re the Boss Blog: MindFlash Makes It Easy to Create a Training Program — and to Charge for It

Tech Support

What small-business owners need to know about technology.

In a post several months ago, I described how the Web-based service MindFlash allows anyone to  create online training presentations, including reviews, quizzes and automatic grading complete with award certificates. (I illustrated the post with a little course of my own on brewing beer.)

The service has proven popular with companies that want to develop internal training programs, like on safety, harassment and other issues that employees might need to get up to speed on. MindFlash’s chief executive, Donna Wells, reports that a range of companies have developed thousands of courses that have been taken by more than 100,000 people.

But on Tuesday MindFlash is unveiling a new version of the service that should make it more interesting to a wider range of companies. That’s because the service will now allow you to charge people to take your course. One of the early preintroduction users of the new pay-for-training feature is Raz Chan, who runs a fitness and martial-arts studio in Vancouver, British Columbia. For fees ranging from $197 to $497, you can learn some of Mr. Chan’s secrets of self-defense in a series of online video courses that can take you all the way through instructor certification. “A lot of our students have been asking for a way to stay on top of the material at home,” says Mr. Chan. “And we hear from a lot of people who live too far away to come to our gym.”

Other early adopters include a software company that charges its fashion-house customers for extra online employee training, and a dentist who is charging other dentists for courses in dental techniques he’s mastered. MindFlash’s service requires a minimum charge of $9.99, but most early users are charging from $20 to $100. While MindFlash usually charges $9.99 a month and up for course developers with more than 10 trainees, it is waiving all fees for those who charge for courses, taking instead a 15-percent commission. (The company is waiving even that commission as an introductory offer until Nov. 1.)

The idea to allow charging came from MindFlash users themselves, said Ms. Wells. Like many Web companies, MindFlash invites users to request new features and to vote on suggestions. From the very beginning, getting to make money off the courses was the request that popped up most often.

In addition to MindFlash providing the means for developing a course and charging for it, Ms. Wells hopes to create a consumer marketplace for anyone who might be interested in online training — a one-stop online shopping place for courses, potentially making MindFlash the Amazon.com of online training sessions. (Hey, a company can dream.) And while the focus is initially on selling training to the public, MindFlash plans to add features aimed at helping businesses sell course content to other businesses that might want to resell it to their trainee customers.

Now excuse me, I’ll need to work on that beer-making course if I’m going to start charging big bucks for it.

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Article source: http://feeds.nytimes.com/click.phdo?i=8149204369344d869eb3e9efa09c3230

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