Before starting Instruqt, we worked as IT consultants. We helped clients with Cloud transitions and DevOps transformations, and our main job was to help development teams to improve their skills and knowledge. We gave trainings and workshops, but we quickly found out that it wasn’t enough. We needed something that scaled better.
A few years ago, when we were still working as consultants for Xebia, we co-organised a conference together with HashiCorp We had a small booth, and were brainstorming about how we could teach the attendants something, while making it fun and original. So we came up with an idea: we created challenges for all the HashiCorp tools, and we measured the time people took to complete the challenges. It was a great success! And almost everyone told us this was an awesome way to learn new technologies.
That’s how Instruqt was born. We pivoted from a competition platform to a learning platform, and opened up the engine to let developers create their own challenges.
Learning in IT nowadays
Most companies are investing a lot in education. As an employee, you get a training budget, access to e-learning platforms and the freedom to attend and organise meetups. Next to that, there are numerous free trainings and tutorials available on the internet.
But we discovered that this isn’t enough. A lot of trainings are nothing more than just a happy flow. Monkey-see, monkey-do. But what if stuff breaks? Then you really need to know the internals of the tools or platforms you’re working with. And it’s easy to complete a training with multiple choice questions when you can Google for the answers. But did you actually improve your skills? Are you able to debug the software you’re using under time pressure?
Our vision on learning
We strongly believe in hands-on learning. The best way to learn is by getting your hands dirty. Think of it as a drivers license: next to passing your theory exam, you need to become proficient by driving yourself. For safety, the instructor sits next to you, but you have to do it yourself. That’s how we envision Instruqt. We offer a safe environment, in which you can acquire hands-on skills and knowledge. And we also believe that everyone has something to share. And that knowledge is perhaps even more valuable than anything you can find on the internet.