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Windows 10 user training minimizes post-upgrade headaches

User training is an important part of moving to Windows 10. IT can do it themselves or turn to a host of video-based options.

One task IT shops often overlook during an operating system upgrade is end-user training, and Windows 10 is no exception.

It's not surprising training gets lost in the shuffle. IT must verify that Windows 10 is compatible with the applications users work with, test to make sure it is stable and reliable, and verify that they can deploy and configure it in a manner that adheres to regulatory requirements.

In some cases, IT might assume users already know how to use Windows. In other cases, the powers that be might try to stretch the IT budget by skimping on training. Whatever the reason, neglecting Windows 10 user training is a big mistake.

Why Windows 10 user training is important

Whatever the reason, neglecting Windows 10 user training is a big mistake.

Without proper training, simple issues are likely to result in help desk calls. Constant calls lower users' productivity and tie up help desk resources, potentially increasing the amount of time it takes for other users to get help with their problems.

End users don't require the same level of Windows 10 training the IT staff does, but it is important to teach users the basics. In fact, user training is probably more important today than it has been at any time in the last 25 years. Over the last few years, many users have switched from PCs to Macs, and many others have abandoned their PCs in favor of mobile devices. As a result, there are more users who do not have an intimate knowledge of how Windows works.

How to train users

One of the best options is on-site Windows 10 end-user training. Organizations can either have someone from IT present the training material or bring in a professional trainer. Depending on the size of the organization, it may be possible to train users in batches rather than everyone at the same time.

Another popular option is Windows 10 training videos, which tend to be less disruptive than live sessions. Users are free to watch the videos at their convenience, and IT does not have to spend time presenting sessions. The disadvantage to video-based training is that users can't ask questions in real time.

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Windows 10 training videos come in many forms. Some organizations record videos in house and post them somewhere users can access them such as a Microsoft SharePoint document library. Another option is to purchase a training course. The downside to this approach is that using commercially available videos can get expensive because the vendors may license them on a per-user basis.

Another option is numerous YouTube videos explaining how to use Windows 10, but IT should screen the videos first because some are not as good as others.

One last option is to take a Windows 10 training course from Microsoft. Although Microsoft training has a reputation for being expensive, the company offers free, online training through the Microsoft Virtual Academy. Most of the content is intended for IT pros, but Microsoft does provide a free introductory Windows 10 user training course called "Do Great Things with Windows 10".

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