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Success Story
Think Learning

Helping Think Learning scale during a time of exponential growth in the pandemic

The background

Think Learning has occupied the learning technology space for around 15 years, creating crafted solutions for high-stakes organisations at a very competitive cost. They kickstarted their success in the early 2000s with an NHS-wide E-appraisal contract and have gone from strength to strength ever since, having recently been named the most successful, highest selling Totara partner of 2020.

As a Platinum Alliance Totara partner, the company has made significant developments to their award-winning learning and talent platform to suit highly regulated sectors in the UK, with clients spanning industries such as healthcare, government, finance and legal.

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The challenge

With the pandemic forcing everything online, Think Learning saw a huge increase in e-learning consumption and online activity, especially amongst their healthcare clients. Over the past year, they have grown incredibly quickly, resulting in a fundamental need to scale their platform. 

Matt Mundey, Commercial Director of Think Learning, commented, “We’ve been fortunate and privileged to be serving so many healthcare clients during the pandemic. We’ve seen a big upsurge in site activity with huge volumes of online learning being undertaken, especially when COVID-19  first emerged and there was a need for massive amounts of training around it.”

From helping clients with PPE fitting processes to managing vaccination appointments via their platform, Think Learning has been supporting the public sector through this very difficult time. With nearly half a million users from around 60 clients – 17% of which are NHS healthcare – it was clear that Think Learning needed an incredibly robust hosting environment to fuel their platform.

The requirements

Working with organisations that are running 24/7, Think Learning’s key product requirements included:

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Public sector track record

Think learning needed a partner that they could join on the G-cloud digital services framework for public sector procurement.

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Security and compliance

Working with public sector clients, they needed the security, accreditation and compliance certifications to assure their user base around those key areas.

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A scalable solution

Think Learning tends to supply 2-4 sites per client, so the ability to spin up multiple servers and keep on top of everything was really important.

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Expert management

Something that they really needed was a managed service. With 100+ virtual machines, they were looking for really responsive support from a hosting supplier.

The solution

Think learning initiated a rigorous scan of the cloud market, which, following the shortlisting process, resulted in a partnership with Hyve. After an extensive and in-depth consultation process, Hyve designed and recommended a bespoke private cloud solution, to tick all of Think Learning’s boxes. As well as the high level of security that this service brought, working with the Totara Learning Management System requires a lot of power, so Hyve’s robust private cloud servers were the perfect match.

Matt commented, “We were really pleased with the way that Hyve suggested solutions. We went through a discovery phase together where we explained our needs and the Hyve team were incredibly helpful and creative. We were particularly impressed with Hyve’s support services and their positive can-do attitude that came out during the procurement process”.

The results

500,000

users served

100+

virtual machines supported

9,000

vaccinations booked

After experiencing hugely unpredictable high demand, the ability and the agility to spin up instances frequently and rapidly was essential. Hyve’s expert support team worked closely with Think Learning to migrate their existing client base quickly and without disruption. 

Matt commented, “It’s been good to get to know the team and feel that we’re engaging with real people; there is no faceless corporate service desk with Hyve. One thing we are particularly grateful for is the out of hours support that you’ve given us. Those touches are deeply appreciated, as that’s something that we pass on to our client base as well.”

During the past year, every single one of Think Learning’s healthcare clients has increased their user numbers dramatically, with thousands of clinicians logging in within days of the new platform going live.

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Matt commented, “Particularly through 2020 and the pandemic in general, scalability was a huge requirement and Hyve definitely helped with that. We grew very rapidly, taking on a lot more clients, including 12 healthcare clients at the height of the pandemic, so in line with that rapid growth, the scalability that Hyve’s solution provided was invaluable.”

More recently, Think Learning’s platform has aided the COVID-19 vaccination programme by acting as a booking system for healthcare staff to schedule their appointments.  Notably, 9,000 people in one organisation booked a vaccination appointment over just one weekend. The reliability and sheer power of Hyve’s servers really helped to provide a bedrock of concurrency to enable so many users to complete booking transactions at once.

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