Amazon is a big company with a lot of different parts: It’s the king of e-commerce, for one thing, and a major video streaming company, for another. But Amazon’s single most profitable division doesn’t have anything to do with its online store or the stuff that you can watch on a Fire TV device. Amazon’s big moneymaker is Amazon Web Services.

Amazon Web Services — or AWS, for short — is Amazon’s cloud services offering. Amazon has a ton of cloud server space, and it uses that cloud computing muscle to give businesses new tools to make their work more convenient, more scalable, and more efficient. Your business may well be able to use AWS to grow and improve, too. But, to do that, you’ll need highly trained employees who know how to use AWS properly.

AWS and your business

Businesses all over the world rely on AWS because Amazon’s cloud services arm offers powerful solutions for businesses of all shapes and sizes.

AWS offers cloud storage, of course, but that’s just the beginning. It also offers cloud computational power and allows businesses to run apps and dynamic websites in the cloud. AWS also makes it possible to share and deliver content securely all over the world, as well as to send out mass emails to mailing lists — perfect for staying in touch with your customers or setting up a company newsletter.

But AWS is only as effective as the people who use it. And if you want your business to use AWS properly, powerfully, and efficiently, then you need to invest in AWS training. Here’s how to know when it’s time to kick off a new training session.

How do you know when it’s time for AWS training?

A few indicators will clue you in to the fact that your team is ready for AWS training. Some are more obvious than others, but all are important. Consider the sum total of your circumstances, and then make a smart call.

Let’s start with the most obvious: Your team needs AWS training when your business relies on AWS. Don’t bother to pay Amazon to use AWS if your business isn’t making the most of it. And using AWS to its fullest potential takes training. Giving your staff (and yourself) broader knowledge and a deeper understanding of AWS and its capabilities will make your business more efficient and may even open up dynamic new possibilities.

You also need to consider your employees. How familiar are they with AWS? If they’ve used it before, did they use it in the same ways that your business does right now, or in the same ways that your business might use it in the future? If your employees are unfamiliar with AWS, or if they aren’t familiar with the right parts (like if, for instance, they know about cloud storage on AWS but not the content delivery features your business might use), then that’s a good indicator that it’s time to consider AWS training.

Finally, you should think about the quality and completeness of your team. Ideally, you want to be able to train all of your employees at once and then hold onto those employees long term. Hiring qualified employees to replace departing ones is expensive, and so is helping less-qualified replacements catch up. And if you expand your team shortly after training is completed, you’ll have to start all over again with the new hires, and that’s inefficient.

With the right choices and the right timing, your team could be using AWS — and, more importantly, using it effectively.