Customer Success: Accenture Technology Case Study

CUSTOMER SUCCESS:

Train 80,000 Developers in one year…WHAT?

Overview

Accenture builds and maintains IT systems for the world’s most
recognized brands. They sought a partner that could provide
scalable self-service learning to address the needs of a large,
multi-national developer workforce and enable the creation of
secure, resilient software applications for their clients.

Accenture logo

Accenture Goals Accenture Results

Train 80,000 software engineers

Teams had varying skill levels and job functions
focused on resilient design, secure coding, and robust application constructs.

Provide deep, continuous measurement

Reporting requirements included analysis by geography, job function, and business group.

Maximize training engagement

Driving completion would impact ROI for the training itself and pay dividends to Accenture clients as skill sets rose.

Goal exceeded by 40%

The successful pilot program and role-based training made it easy
to put 110,000 software engineers through a full learning path
within 12 months.

Full metrics visibility, quantifiable statistics

Weekly reports including course completion, ‘Belt’ System
progress, and competency baselines drove timely adjustments.

Participation across disparate groups

Seamless infrastructure and ongoing communication led to
significant swing in staff engagement, consistency of course
completions, and requests for more training.

Our goals were aggressive. We needed speed, scale, seamless integration, and ongoing expertise. Security Innovation’s superior and innovative approach utilizing cyber ranges with online courses achieved every goal. Their global reputation as an AppSec trusted advisor made them an obvious choice to help us stand up a program that resulted in our teams delivering more secure, resilient code.

Satish Janardhanan

Co-head Application Security, Accenture Technology

Approach – Tailored to Desired Outcomes

Undaunted by the scale and guided by our experienced customer success team, we developed the guideposts for success:

Blended Training

Proven* to impact engagement, courses coupled with Cyber Range challenges provided a practical way to practice knowledge and baseline skills.

Progressive Learning

Learning paths were created for 24 roles, based on three competency tiers (aka “belts”). Post-training assessments determined if users were ready to advance to the next level.

Scalability & Integration

Single Sign-On (SSO) provided seamless access to Security Innovation’s training platform and enabled continuous reporting. The platform could handle over 20k concurrent users.

Quality & Optimization gates

A continuous improvement mindset was adopted from day one. Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) were supported by weekly status calls and quarterly business reviews (QBRs).

* Cybersecurity Training Benchmark Report – Ponemon Institute 2020

Power of Communication & Optimization

Course completion was a stated goal for Accenture, which had seen training endeavors fail in the past. Security Innovation’s customer success team executed regular communication plans including emails, social media posts, and scheduled prompts to spur continued action. The concerted effort led to spikes in both enrollment and course completion.

Accenture graph

The Year of Advancing Security Skills

  • 1. Pilot, then launch
    Training started with Secure Development fundamentals courses rolled out to a small audience. Feedback yielded necessary tweaks before large-scale rollout including rigor scale-back for first-time learners and modification of course sequencing.
  • 2. Hacking to build & baseline skills
    Quarterly hacking events were run on-site and remote. These hands-on exercises targeted a full range of software engineering skills and provided metrics on individual & team advancement and industry comparison.
  • 3. Progress Check & Optimization
    Due to early success, the training goal was increased to 100k. Learning paths were tweaked to better align with job function and the belt program was fully implemented and “security champions” began to emerge.
  • 4. Final Results
    All goals were achieved or surpassed. 110k+ trained, 1M hours of course work completed, and all KPIs met. This provided clear insight into year 2 goals and expansion plans.