How-To Design a VOIP Training Course

VOIP Training and Education is gaining popularity as this vital technology is becoming an imperative to maintaining a competitive edge.

Designing any training course, the first aspect you have to consider is the answer that the training course will have to furnish to the demand of learning formulated by the buyer.

A non superficial knowledge of the training needs it allows to predispose a suitable and effective answer in terms of contents and, often, also of methods.

Besides it also allows to choose the teachers and trainers able to transfer knowledge to participants and also to manage processes.

From Were to Begin? As for any other training intervention a plan of action is needed, what follows could be useful in our case:

1- Define Training Goals and Objectives:

Naturally the objectives of a training course on VOIP can be different according to the dimension of your firm and to your line of business.

For example if your firm is a small or medium enterprise that utilizes VOIP services as end user, the objectives of a training course on VOIP could be these:

-To make aware project managers and responsible of function persons of the necessity to adjust the organization to the technology Voice Over IP;

-To homogenize VOIP knowledge and skills among the business responsible launchings;

-To Identify the application problem list;

-To stimulate the dialogue among the persons responsible of function.

If your firm is a firm that supplies products, services and VOIP consultations, then the objectives could be:

To understand the market context and the perspectives of development of the VOIP products and services in your region or country.

To identify the technical and application problem list of the VOIP with reference specifically to the integration between traditional telephone infrastructures and IP networks of which it requires the client to safeguard the investments effected in the past.

Specific updating on necessary technical knowledge to effectively configure the customers VOIP equipments

Which is the Target Audience of a VOIP Training?

Here are some examples but this list is not exhaustive:

-IT managers

-Technical sales/marketing personnel

-Consultants

-Network designers and engineers

-Product design engineers developing integrated-services products

-Telecom technicians and managers integrating PBX services within data networks

-Systems administrators who will manage a converged network

2. Determine Participants’ Needs

In a VOIP training the initial demands of learning are usually the followings:

-Necessity to furnish the basics of VOIP technology to the participants, especially to those who are not technicians;

-To furnish a common language to all participants, both to those coming from Information Technology function that from the other areas not tightly tied up to the Information Technology (for instance administration, marketing, production);

-To facilitate the integration of the new technology with those existing;

-To appraise the impact of VOIP on the business structure and on the redefinition of the duties of the personnel;

-To understand the necessary elements to the determination of the ROI (Return On Investment) of the project of investment in the VOIP technology.

3. Outline Training Content

Here for example some hints:

-Introduction to Voice over IP

-Understanding the Requirements of Voice in an IP network

-Understanding Gateways and Their Roles

-Encapsulating Voice in IP Packets

-Calculating Bandwidth Requirements

-Understanding Security Implications

Voice over IP Signalling and Call Control

-Understanding the Need for Signals and Call Control

-Configuring H.323

-Configuring SIP

-Configuring MGCP

-Comparing Call Control Models

-Improving and Maintaining Voice Quality

-Comparing Voice Quality Measurement Standards

-Understanding VOIP Challenges

-Understanding QOS (Quality Of Services) and Good Design

-Understanding Jitter and Delay

-Understanding QOS Tools in the WAN (Wide Area Network)

-Configuring QOS in the WAN

-Understanding Voice Bandwidth Engineering

Scalable Numbering and Applications

4. Develop Instructional Activities such as brainstorming, case studies, cooperative group work

Skill development is best achieved through modelling, practice, and feedback, while information acquisition can be achieved through group discussion or collaborative group work

Some strategies that promote active learning include brainstorming, games, mini-lectures, small group work, cooperative group work, simulations, role-playing, and VOIP implementation success case studies

5. Prepare Participant Evaluation Forms

The purpose of the evaluation is to determine the extent to which the training achieved its objectives and to identify what adjustments, if any, need to be made to the VOIP training design or follow-up process. Some issues to address through the evaluation form:

-Did the participants acquire the knowledge and skills that the VOIP training was supposed to provide?

-Were the trainers knowledgeable about VOIP training content?

-Were the activities interesting and effective?

-Was the training format appropriate?

-Is more training on this or related topics needed to support participants in their work?

6. Determine Follow-up Activities for the Event.

Without follow-up, the benefits of a VOIP training may quickly be forgotten or never used.

Follow-up activities provide the continued support and feedback necessary for the successful implementation of new ideas and practices.

To be effective, follow-up activities should be planned as you develop your VOIP training design, and should include a range of opportunities for participants to reflect on both the content of what they learned during the VOIP training and the process of implementation.