Most of us think of Ticketmaster as a company from whom we purchase tickets to sporting events, concerts, or art exhibitions. The company has established a nationwide network of outlets as well as an online presence that sells tickets for everything from Prince to the Moscow Ballet. Ticketmaster sold 100 million tickets valued at $4.9 billion in 2003, through www.ticketmaster.com, more than 3,300 retail Ticket Center outlets, and 19 worldwide telephone call centers.
The operations training group provides training for the company’s Client Services and Event Programming departments. These are the groups who interact with the various sports teams, theaters, and art organizations that contract with Ticketmaster to utilize its proprietary ticketing system and technology for use at their venues. Through the Skill Development Program, knowledge and job tracks have been created, identifying product knowledge requirements for each of Ticketmaster’s products at each of the position levels within the Client Services and Event Programming departments.
It’s important to the company that Client Representatives and Event Programmers clearly understand all of the ticketing software applications they sell and support. Towards that end, Ticketmaster provides instructor-led learning labs and both asynchronous and synchronous online training, using WebEx and Breeze. Relying heavily upon simulation-based instruction, Client Representatives get hands-on experience with each of Ticketmaster’s products.
Ticketmaster uses Questionmark to benchmark this product training. Two to three weeks after the Client Representatives participate in a training session, they are directed to an assessment. The company uses the Genesys PeopleComeFirst learning management system (LMS) to launch the assessment program. The LMS allows students to use one seamless interface for different tasks, including enrolling in a class or taking a test.
Once employees take an assessment, their scores are recorded into the LMS database. Employees can view their scores after the assessment and review the questions they answered incorrectly, allowing for additional reinforcement.
“We use online assessments to not only see what people have learned, but also to learn more about the areas in which they need a brush up,” said Chris Stewart, Manager, Instructional Technology, Ticketmaster.
Stewart reported that he had networked with other training professionals before selecting an assessment program. Questionmark had been widely adopted and his peers recommended it. He also checked out Questionmark’s website to ensure that it contained plenty of documentation, supporting material, and a knowledge base. Ease of use was also critical.
“It’s very uncomplicated,” Stewart commented. “I also like the fact that you can build the questions locally and then import them into the website. There’s so much more to it that we’d like to take advantage of.”