General FAQs
A comprehensive list of all the questions you might have about Small Batch Learning and how it works, including "Is it true I don’t have to pay to use Small Batch Learning?"
Introduction: What is Small Batch Learning?
What is Small Batch Learning?
Small Batch Learning is an online workplace learning platform that provides free online training to the hospitality and retail industries, covering beverage education, beverage service and product knowledge. Unlike traditional learning management systems, unlimited learners can join and use the platform for free, browse and select their own courses, lessons, recipes and products to study, and collect badges and certificates that help them move up leaderboards.
Meanwhile, outlet managers can: either add their own company training materials or customise any Small Batch Learning content; train different roles across multiple teams, in different outlets and in different countries; and use Small Batch Learning to communicate with and track progress for all of them. For further understanding, click here.
What is a Learning Management System?
The longer answer: a software application for the administration, documentation, tracking, reporting and delivery of educational courses, training programs, and learning and development programs. The short answer: a system to deliver and track online training, en masse, for your team.
Why is Small Batch Learning different to other LMSs?
Small Batch Learning has been built specifically with the demands of hospitality training in mind. We want to ensure our solution works for your business, not ours.
Our training content not only covers service skills and beverage education, but also the product knowledge needed to successfully generate revenue for your business, organised in a structured learning tool that mirrors an outlet’s own drinks list – called the Virtual Menu.
Moreover, our technology allows users to customise Small Batch Learning’s content so that it aligns with your own training and allows managers to reach different team members with tailored training optimised for their individual role. And – did we mention? – it’s free.
Do I need to install anything?
No, access to the platform is through the website – look for the “sign in” button. However the platform is also available as both an Android and iOS app – see our User FAQs for more details, but here are the links:
For Android, click here.
For iOS, click here.
What device can I use to access Small Batch Learning?
Any smart device (that has an internet connection): phone, tablet, laptop, computer.
Pricing: Free (except for certain third-party content)
Is it true I don’t have to pay to use Small Batch Learning?
Yes. Any hospitality operator (or individual learner – see “user accounts”, below) can sign up to Small Batch Learning, create a learning platform just for their outlet, then onboard as many staff members as they want, and start training – all for free.
As the platform manager, you can access our free online hospitality courses with certificates or create your own free training program, and never have to worry about paying for more employee licences or renewing your account.
That seems crazy, what’s the catch?
There is no catch. As well as the training courses and product information provided by Small Batch Learning on the Virtual Menu, we work with brands to create lessons to train service professionals on the products sold in their outlets.
This training helps staff fully understand the products they serve, increasing their confidence when it comes to making recommendations for guests, in turn helping to improve the customer experience and revenue for the outlet.
The brands pay Small Batch Learning a fee every time a staff member completes one of these product training lessons, and this keeps the platform free for users.
Is there any content that I have to pay for?
Yes. Some third-party content providers may charge learners and outlets to access their training. However, all Small Batch Learning-authored content and user access to the platform will remain free – forever.
Is it really free for individual users too?
Yes, your profile is completely free and stays with you for life. And it’s not just all the Small Batch Learning content that’s free; unlike some “free” online training models, we won’t ever charge you to download your certificate after finishing each course.
Outlet platforms: Team capacity, large groups & management control
How many staff can join my outlet’s free training platform?
As many as you want, it’s always free.
What if I have more than one venue? What if I have 100 venues?
It’s still free – for as many staff or venues as you need. And forever. We won’t introduce a payment after an initial introductory period, or try to upsell you on extra team space or features.
I manage 1,000 venues across 12 countries, can you support that?
Absolutely. We built our technology with large hotel groups in mind, and the hierarchical structure of the platform allows you to manage from the top down, while giving regional and local managers the access they need to manage their sub-platforms.
There are several ways to implement effectively (and you’d be surprised how quick it is). Send us an enquiry and we’ll walk you through it.
Who controls my outlet’s training platform?
You do. We set up your platform and then invite you or one of your team to join as the first platform admin (your platform manager). This person is given "admin permissions" and can set up your outlet’s training and add staff (or, we can help you do this too, but it’s easy to do by yourself – and we have great videos to show you how!). See User FAQs here for more explanation of "permissions".
Once the platform admin has got the hang of it, the platform is yours to control, forever. We won’t delete it unless either you ask us to or if there’s no activity for a very (very) long time. And we’ll always ask you first.
User accounts: Individuals, lifetime access & switching jobs
How are outlet platforms and user accounts different?
Every user has their own user account, which is separate from an outlet platform. If you’re part of a team on Small Batch Learning, ie you’re training through an outlet platform, and then change jobs, you keep your user account with you – it doesn’t belong to the outlet; it belongs to you.
This means your learning record stays with you, and doesn’t get deleted when you change jobs. (Note: you can also change the email address on your user account when you leave a job, in case you signed up using a work email.)
Can I use Small Batch Learning as an individual?
Yes, click here to sign up for an individual account. You don’t have to be part of a team or real-life venue to learn on Small Batch Learning. As an individual learner, you can access the training library and save content you want to learn to your My Shelf space.
Later if you join an outlet’s training platform, any lessons assigned to you by your new manager, which you’ve already done, will show as completed – so you won’t have to repeat training each time you move to a new job (but you’re always free to review completed training).
What happens to a user's account once they leave my business?
The learner and outlet are separate entities – so if a staff member leaves your business, you simply remove their access to your outlet platform. (Note: they can even change their email address on their account before leaving if they’ve signed up with a work email). A learner retains their profile for life. If they re-join later, or move to another outlet that uses Small Batch Learning, their learning statistics follow them.
Content: Training, languages & quizzes
What languages is Small Batch Learning currently available in?
English and Mandarin.
Who writes Small Batch Learning's training content?
Small Batch Learning’s own courses are written by our in-house content team, but are peer-reviewed to make sure the training matches the required standards of the industry. These courses are clearly labelled with "SBL". However, Small Batch Learning also welcomes third-party content providers to host their training content on the platform, and encourages outlet managers to upload their own outlet-specific training content too.
Outlet platform: Can I add my own training?
Yes! Outlet managers are encouraged to use the platform – for free – as their business’s own bespoke online training platform. You can add as much material as you want with our easy-to-use content creation tool, including text, photo and video, with options to attach audio, pdfs or power point slides. You can also mix our content with your own, to make tailor-made training courses that match your team’s specific training requirements.
Outlet platform: Can I create quizzes to test my staff on the content I upload?
Yes, you can create quizzes for each lesson using our simple content authoring tool. Quizzes are presented in multiple-choice format, with answers and questions that can feature text or photos.
Outlet platform: Can I upload my own cocktail recipes and specs?
Yes, the recipes feature allows you to build your spec sheet into a Virtual Menu, as well as allowing access to our library of classic cocktails – use our recipes as they are, or customise with your outlet’s own specs and brand calls.
Outlet platform: If I add my own content, who can see it?
That’s up to you. Most admins choose to only share their private content with members of their outlet – their real-life team, in other words. Managers can assign each training course to specific individuals, or share with the whole company – and it’s all protected to ensure your content remains private. Once a staff member leaves your business, simply remove their access to your private content with the click of a button.
Outlet platform: Can my staff also create content?
Again, that’s up to you. When adding a person to your outlet’s team, you select the permissions that are granted to that person – "admin" permissions means they can write or delete content.
How can brands offer product training on Small Batch Learning?
Through the Virtual Menu tool, by adding extra lessons to their products information pages, or by creating training courses as a third-party content provider and then sharing access to their courses with outlets.
Outlet platform: Can I upload SCORM content?
No, we don’t support SCORM wrapped content. The decision to build our own content authoring tool was not one taken lightly; however, the flexibility required to deliver job-optimised training for all team members meant that SCORM was not a solution that would deliver on our promise to you, and your staff.
Who uses Small Batch Learning?
What industries do you serve?
Hospitality and retail.
Which companies use Small Batch Learning currently?
Check out what some of our valued clients are saying about us here.
Is it possible to integrate with existing technologies used in my organisation?
Yes, it is possible. Depending on requirements, there will be a one-off fee associated with a new integration based on the scope of work required. Rest assured, we are currently working on several integrations with popular complementary technologies. Enquire with us about a bespoke solution built around your business needs.
Can you support large organisations?
Yes, our technology is designed to cater to all hospitality businesses – whether 50 staff or 50,000.
What kind of support do you offer?
When your outlet signs up, you’ll be assigned an account manager who’ll be responsible for customer support. For technical support, our team is online 24 hours a day.
How do we get started?
If you’re a manager of a hospitality business, send us an enquiry and we’ll be in touch. If you’re wanting your venue involved, but are not the decision maker, connect us with the relevant person and we’ll take it from there.