Thank You from OSTraining
2012 is here, our 2nd birthday is approaching in a couple of weeks. It is time for some thank yous. A lot of thank yous.
OSTraining is a new business that has been a long time in making. I used to work full-time as a teacher, doing webdesign in the evenings to pay the bills. From the beginning, the webdesign was powered by open source. My first Mambo ( Joomla ) site was in 2003. Three years later, as open source really started to become popular, the evening job was more profitable than the day job. So I went full-time with Alledia.com, where we did traditional webdesign and SEO services. But the urge to teach remained and over time the teaching side of Alledia grew until in 2010, I split it off into a separate company.
Still, at the beginning of 2011, OSTraining was just me and a large team of part-timers. A year later and we have the equivalent of 5 full-time staff members, plus an even larger team of part-time live trainers and video creators. So a big thank you to Rod, Nick, Ed, Thanh, Stacey, Tessa and everyone else who’s worked with us this year.
Some 2011 Training Stats
Thanks to all of you who took training with us last year. You helped us reach several milestones:
- Online Training: We’ve now passed 500 videos, 5,000 members and 35,000 support forum posts.
- Live Training: We did 124 live classes across North America. The classes were almost perfectly divided between Drupal (63) and Joomla (61).
- On-site Training: New clients included the U.S. Departments of Energy, Education and Commerce plus the U.S. District Courts. In the private sector, our clients included Pfizer and Wiley Publishing.
- Books: Joomla Explained was published and became the best-reviewed Joomla book on Amazon. In addition, a video version of the book is almost done and should be released shortly. We’ve also written a Drupal version of the book and that’s coming in early 2012.
Major 2011 Goals: Drupal
We had several big goals for 2011, but one is particularly worth reflecting on because we have a lot of thank yous to say. We spent a lot of time and effort this year trying to break into the Drupal market. Sometimes the Drupal community can feel like the Freemasons and you’re left without knowing the secret handshake to get in. We were very fortunate to meet some great Drupal people who vouched for us, believed in us and helped open a lot of doors. Major thank yous go to Dave and his team at Mediacurrent, Heather at Acquia, Ryan at Commerce Guys, Doug Vann, Diana at Four Kitchens plus Jeff at Phase2 and Cindy in Washington.
Did all the effort pay off? Yes.
We taught at both DrupalCons in 2011 and were the only beginner class to be accepted in London. We’re back again for DrupalCon Denver in March.
We taught at five DrupalCamps: Atlanta, Ohio, Indianapolis, Austin and New Orleans.
Major 2012 Goals
Open source changes so quickly that last week’s goals keep on getting left in the dust, but here’s what we’re currently aiming to do this year:
- OSToolbar: A reboot is coming within a couple of weeks and our members will be getting the first copies as part of their subscription.
- Support: Our members have questions and poured hundreds of them into our support forum every month. In 2012, we hope to answer them even faster and more effectively. We’re going to work really hard on making it easier to ask questions and on having more staff available.
- WordPress: Very few companies have truly managed to be a cross-platform success. We hope to become one of the few in 2012.
- Other CMS platforms: We likely won’t provide full training for other CMSs but do look for more blog posts on more CMS platforms, starting with an introductory series on Silverstripe, Concrete5, ModX and others.
Finally, thanks to all of you reading this. Without a doubt, we’ve benefited at some point from your help. Whether you write code, hold events, run an open source business or are one our customers, we all help each other. Open source is an enormous, inter-connected industry and community. Thank you for being a part of it.