UNIVERSAL LIGHTING TECHNOLOGIES CASE STUDY: ONE FULL-REACH INTERFACE
Training is a core competency for our company. When distributors ask, 'How can Universal support my business?' we always talk about our ability to train their sales teams. -- Susan Phillips, vice president of marketing at Universal Lighting Technologies
Universal Lighting Technologies built its brand reputation around ballast lighting. However. when the company was purchased by Panasonic in 2007 and entered the LED market, it faced a challenge changing brand perception
to align with its new status as a leader in LED technology.
Universal Lighting Technologies first developed its own online training curriculum many years ago. As lighting technologies rapidly changed, the company needed to make quick adjustments to its curriculum,
which was a challenge for its old system. Phillips identified the need to take Universal's LED training to the next level as a means to remain competitive in the lighting market, and to gain awareness as an LED leader among distributors and end users.
The BlueVolt LMS added value immediately for Universal Lighting Technologies. It allowed the company to reach distributors and end-users with their rebranded message from a single interface. "I was presenting at a very large national sales meeting and I came to the slide that read: We are going to use BlueVolt as our new interface. One of the regional vice presidents said, 'That's a smart move.' That was really exciting. He knew that two of our main distributors, IMARK Group and Affiliated Distributors, used the BlueVolt LMS. The ability to weave our training system into that larger frame work was very appealing," says Phillips.
"We loved that BlueVolt has an interface that is shared by so many of our common distributors or other industry partners," says Phillips. "We have great relationships with our distributors and our agents. IMARK Group, Affiliated Distributors, and Consolidated Electrical Distributors (CED). Regency Lighting, and Mayer Electric Supply are big guys within our industry and we like that they're sharing our training courses. To have one interface that allows us to share our training with those members is phenomenal. It's even more important that we let these guys know, 'Yes! We do LED too.'"
The BlueVolt platform allows Universal to get our product training in front of end users. "We typically don't know the end-users who are purchasing from our distributors as well as our main distributor partners. That audience includes facility managers, property managers, lighting specialists, lighting designers, architects, and electrical contractors. We are trying to show them who we are and what we sell frequently so that they
remember that Universal offers it when the need arises," says Phillips.
"There are so many more choices now with LED than there were with ballast. Being able to reach 30,000 electrical contractors that have the option of using our courses for continuing education credits is great," says Phillips.
Additionally, lighting designers can get credits to continue their National Council on Qualifications for the Lighting Professions (NCOLP) certifications. This creates more incentive for end-users to take our courses.
It's simply a better way to reach our end-users than in the past."
Universal Lighting Technologies' online university only took two months to get to peak usage from launch date. They joined BlueVolt in March of 2015. After an eight-week implementation, the company launched Universal University in May. In implementing Universal Lighting Technologies' online university and showing a commitment to their ongoing success, BlueVolt was and is a true partner.
"The Blue Volt team worked with me every single week, and helped me to get everything prepared for the launch of our new courses," says Phillips. "When I had questions, they were right there every step of the way. I still feel that way today. If I needed something, I know for a fact they would answer me very quickly. To me, that level of customer service is extremely important."
About Universal Lighting
Universal Lighting Technologies, a member of the Panasonic family, is a global leader in the design and manufacturing of lighting products and control systems. Based in Nashville, Tennessee, they hold more than 150 patents in lighting technology. With operations and distribution worldwide, the products of Universal Lighting Technologies are marketed under the Universal®. EVERLINE®, Triad®, Panasonic, and Vossloh-Schwabe brand names. Training is a strategic initiative for the company due to 60-70% of their product line rapidly transitioning to LED technology.
Founded in 2003 and headquartered in Portland, Oregon, BlueVolt is a pioneer in the eLearning industry. BlueVolt’s solutions help a wide range of organizations increase sales, build brand awareness, and enhance employee knowledge.
Along with its learning management system and channel learning and readiness (CLR) SaaS platform, the company offers a range of client-focused services, including course and curriculum development, strategic support,
business intelligence, and unique channel-training innovations.