Mastering Autodesk Software for AEC Staff Onboarding, Upskilling & Retention

By Brenda Araujo | Training

To succeed in today’s competitive construction environment and ever-changing digital landscape, architects, engineers, and construction professionals must lean on online learning to help them obtain the skills they need to stay ahead – especially considering the increase in remote working.

Whether you’re an architect, engineer, contractor, or subcontractor, this educational platform is fully customizable for various roles and goal paths that share educational content specifically targeted toward each user’s unique skills gaps, roles, or projects.

In this article, we will be sharing some best practices and tips for architectural and engineering professional staff hiring, onboarding, upskilling, and retention.


CADLearning Employee Lifecycle Image


A résumé that says a potential employee knows a software program is essentially worthless. How deep is their knowledge? How well do their actual skill sets align with the specific roles or projects you are hiring for?

Pre-hire assessments are a powerful way to prove that candidates have the requisite skill set for the job. Links to pre-hire assessments can be sent to external users, with no need to enter them into the CADLearning system. You can then easily compare results to see which users perform the best. You can even drill down to see which questions candidates answered correctly, and which they struggled with.



Do you have the same onboarding process for each new employee? How much time do they waste covering content they have already mastered?

CADLearning lets administrators create playlists with just the content that a new hire needs to know to get to work in a specific role, task, or workflow. By starting with the assessment, new hires eliminate lessons they already know from their learning paths, providing them with the exact content they need to get to work and start contributing to the team quicker.



When we talk to customers, most say that they can only let employees train for about 20 minutes each day while keeping them billable.

How do you ensure that your teams continue to progress in this limited timeframe?

CADLearning offers fully customizable roles and goals paths that automatically surface content specifically targeted toward each user’s unique skills gaps, roles, or projects.

Because of the unique taxonomy of CADLearning content, it’s not tied to an artificial course construct. Instead, we can map competencies and skills to roles, tasks, and projects to surface custom learning paths. Users are also offered stock certification paths that align with Autodesk Certification Exams or role-specific content.

As users answer questions from their dashboard or take assessments to establish their current knowledge base, their progress is recorded. When questions are answered correctly, those lessons are automatically completed in the certification path. If that same lesson appears in another certification path, it’s completed there too, eliminating redundant learning.

Before certification is completed, users must demonstrate that they have reached full mastery. Otherwise, their knowledge gaps are just going to grow, causing problems down the line. The iterative process exposes and eliminates knowledge gaps until users have exhibited full comprehension and, thus, full certification.


Employee Retention

We all know how expensive it is to find and train a new employee. When you add in the loss of productivity as they upskill, the cost is even more substantial—from 20% to up to 200% for high-level executives.

Do you know that 60% of employees leave their current position because they don’t feel that they are learning or growing?

Providing employees with the tools that they need to learn and progress in their roles is the best way to limit churn. CADLearning Roles and Goals give employees the power to not only continuously refine their current skills but also choose their own path for progressing into new roles and responsibilities.


Knowledge Retention

Training programs are expensive, yet they are often ineffective. Within a week of live training, more than 50% of knowledge is lost.
CADLearning provides on-demand learning from anywhere, at any time, on any device. CADLearning is a great companion to in-person training. Distribute playlists with prerequisite knowledge before a training session. Afterward, provide a playlist with information that was covered during the session for quick references and ongoing learning.



Firms spend thousands of dollars on software, and they want to secure their ROI on that purchase. If a user gets lost in the program or has trouble getting started, adoption suffers.

CADLearning Assist provides immediate answers at the point of need so users can overcome obstacles without frustration.
Contextual content suggestions are surfaced based upon the commands, tools, and functions currently in use, and relevant content is populated automatically.

Users can also search the full CADLearning library right inside of Assist. Video lessons and scrolling narration play directly in the Plugin—no need to open a browser.

The AI expert, which can be added to CADLearning Assist, answers natural language questions by leveraging more than 35,000 lessons in the CADLearning Library. Answers are accompanied by lesson suggestions. If the AI doesn’t know the answer, the question can be escalated to a subject matter expert. The expert only answers the question once, and the AI will know the answer next time.

Optionally, an enterprise can program CADLearning Assist with common workflows. When Assist recognizes that the workflow is in progress, it will provide suggested next steps and surface playlists of content on that specific workflow.

Without leaving the Autodesk application, without losing valuable time on a manual search, users find the answers that they need to keep designing.

Competency Paths are another way to suggest a wider slate of Autodesk products. Content creators can input a variety of criteria, such as required skills, competencies, and programs.

CADLearning will then generate a custom learning path. Just syndicate the content and point the API toward a web page. Add your messaging, and you have a fully formatted help, role-based, or workflow-specific page in moments.


Help Desk

How many hours do you spend answering internal emails that ask the same few questions over and over again?

CADLearning Help gives you these hours back by providing real-time, natural language answers.

Train the AI expert to answer your own frequently-asked questions. Custom content and workflows are surfaced automatically. CADLearning content is leveraged to provide instant Autodesk answers and suggest relevant videos.

Questions CADLearning Help doesn’t know the answer to can be escalated to your experts or CADLeanring experts. Help will learn the answer for next time.

Help links into tools like Skype, Slack, Teams, and SharePoint to destroy silos of information.

Stop answering redundant questions and give yourself the time to start focusing on the important tasks that will lead to real productivity gains.


Global Teams

How do you localize learning content across global teams that speak multiple languages?

CADLearning neural translations, available in more than 60 languages, provide a seamless learning experience in the language of your choice. Build custom courses and playlists in the language you are comfortable working in, and viewers can choose to view the content in the language they prefer. Website fields are also translated, providing a seamless user experience.


Project Management

How do you identify the most qualified team members for each unique project?

CADLearning project placement functionality will remove all the guesswork by leveraging analytics to identify the perfect candidate for each position.

Putting the project functionality to work in your organization is simple—just add a few details to create a project, then input the positions you want to fill. Each position can be completely customized with its own software and competency requirements, so you can pinpoint the most qualified team members at every level.
If you already know the perfect person for the job, assign them immediately.

Have standard positions that repeat across projects?

Create a template with roles and project requirements, then add it to a new project search with one click.

If you find the perfect internal match, click the checkbox, and an email will automatically be sent to that employee, letting him or her know that they have been assigned to the project.

Didn’t find anybody internally who fits your criteria?

Quickly create an assessment to help you identify the perfect external candidate.

When a project needs change, you can easily update software and competency requirements, remove employees from the project, and search for new matches.

The CADLearning portal already has the most comprehensive data about your employees’ current skills and knowledge, as well as their skills and knowledge gaps.

With projects, you can put that data to work for you, saving time and money while ensuring that each unique project has the most qualified team.


Product Help

Nobody wants to spend hours wading through content to find answers. They want to immediately find the exact content they need to get back to work.

With more than 35,000 videos on more than 50 products, CADLearning offers the most comprehensive library of Autodesk learning content in the world. Because CADLearning’s content is uniquely atomized to focus on just one tool, command, or feature, when combined with the 4D Technologies platforms, lessons can be used as building blocks for everything from A-Z training, to product support, to just-in-time training.

The integrated assessment engine quickly identifies user skill and knowledge gaps and provides just the content they need to fill those gaps. Generate a playlist from that assessment for a learning path specifically targeted to each user.

Users and administrators can create custom playlists and share them with other users. With one click, users can generate an assessment from the playlist. Through an iterative process of reassessment and building new playlists, users can continue until they reach full mastery.


Convert to Subscription Model

The introduction of subscription models paired with the rapid growth of the industry means that traditional e-learning is no longer enough to keep up with modern learning needs.

Today’s enterprises require ongoing performance support that upskills workers and improves productivity in a way that creates tangible outcomes.

CADLearning content is atomized to focus on just one concept or feature per video, providing short, digestible microlearning that is immediately actionable and leads to better knowledge retention.

When combined with the 4D platforms, CADLearning content can be used as building blocks for everything from traditional A-Z training, to flipped classrooms, to in-application performance support.

Customers have the flexibility to create pre-hire assessments, individualized onboarding, and upskilling learning paths, and project-based workflows, making their enterprise portal a unified talent, knowledge, and competency management solution available to users whenever, wherever, on any device.

CADLearning has the ability to release content incrementally in alignment with Autodesk dot releases. This provides immediate value, while also ensuring that users are taking full advantage of the latest and greatest features in each release.


We are excited to announce that CADlearning has recently been acquired by Eagle Point Software! This strategic move signifies a new chapter to provide even more comprehensive and innovative training solutions to our valued customers.

Eagle Point Software is a leader in enhancing your learning experience and delivering cutting-edge resources to empower your professional growth. Stay tuned for exciting updates and opportunities that this acquisition will bring to the AEC community.

To learn more, click here and discover how this partnership will benefit you.

INDUSTRIES: Architecture, Buildings, Civil Engineering, Civil Infrastructure, Construction, MEP Engineering, Structural Engineering

Published on June 9, 2021 in Training.

About the Author

Brenda Araujo has been with Microsol Resources since 2018 and currently holds the title of Training & Marketing Coordinator. She manages content strategy for digital marketing through social media posting and engagement, digital advertising as well as CAD/BIM training logistics in all three office locations including virtual training for the AEC community.