Top ERP and CRM Training Tips
It’s no secret that enterprise software like CRM and ERP can truly revolutionize the way your company operates, connecting your departments and streamlining processes across your entire business. Also not a secret: the possibility that an ERP implementation could end in failure. Some implementations backfire because employees struggle to use the software correctly, abandon it out of frustration or input and analyze data incorrectly—all recipes for dangerous errors and poor ROI.
That’s why CRM and ERP training for your organization is so crucial. Proper training is the only way to ensure seamless user adoption of your new enterprise software or integration platform throughout your business. Read on for some top ERP and CRM training tips for your next software project.
Advocate for the Software
If your employees are fully informed of all the benefits that the software project will provide, they should be truly excited to start making it an integral part of their daily tasks. That kind of enthusiasm has to start with the project team—the group who first believed in the power of an ERP or CRM solution and who must be tasked with getting everyone else to believe, too. After all, you must have had a host of reasons you wanted to take on the new enterprise software; it shouldn’t be hard to get people excited about learning more. The first step of successful training is sparking that initial interest before you even get started with the finer details of the process.
Involve Staff in the Project
By making sure that your employees are fully involved in the design of your enterprise software, you will naturally build a system that is tightly integrated with your business processes and intuitive to users. Instead of just boring your employees with endless presentations that all the free coffee and bagels in the world can’t improve, let your team get their hands dirty. Ask questions and allow open feedback so that you know every employee has their questions answered and their specific tasks supported. If they are directly participating in the architecture of your CRM and ERP, they will be innately trained in that system from the get go—you’ll get education and help with your software plan at the same time!
Build a Training Hierarchy
While it is imperative that everyone using the new platform is trained, there should also be a training pyramid in place. Focus your most intense training efforts on the super users who will be utilizing the system most and drawing the greatest value from it. These employees will be your greatest assets when it comes to getting your whole organization to jump on board the project, and they will need the most time and effort when it comes to the education process.
At the same time, you don’t need to overwhelm all of your employees with every single piece of information and best practice when it comes to your CRM and ERP training. If you inundate them with use cases and terms that are not relevant to how they will use the software, they're guaranteed to tune out everything you’re telling them. Instead, filter out only the truly valuable nuggets of information for each department and employee. It will not only make training go faster, but also show every individual the specific benefits the software will provide them. With a hierarchy in place, the training process will be significantly expedited and more effective for users.
Give Staff Homework (Yes, Homework)
A common complaint that we often come across during large ERP or CRM projects is the time taken away from normal business operations for the training, change management and implementation operations. One way to make sure that proper education is happening without delegating too much time away from revenue-driving activities is to develop a CRM and ERP training homework plan.
Yes, even the term "homework" may evoke painful memories, but it doesn’t necessarily have to be done at home, just in spaces of free time or short blocks in the office so that you can keep training consistent, making sure that your staff is going to be truly ready for the go-live date. These small bites of training can be anything from validation of certain systems to figuring out specific problems that might emerge within the software.
Training Doesn’t End at Go-Live
Failing to continue process and software training post go-live is an invitation for your CRM or ERP project to falter as soon as it leaves the gate. Ongoing training is a crucial part of your software project and should be budgeted for from day one of planning. Your software is not intended to be static. Its value, processes and data will change over time, and your training should too. Without it, users will quickly fall out of step with your software, changing best practices and new company policies. If software isn’t used properly, it just won’t perform the way it’s promised. Poor practices will lead to frustrating, mistake-ridden software—not exactly what you paid for. It's crucial that you always keep your users up to date on the best way to use your valuable software.
This post-implementation CRM and ERP training will also include any new updates and upgrades. The world of technology is notoriously fast-paced, so you should never stop educating users to maximize the value of your software.
Proper CRM and ERP training and change management are crucial in any successful enterprise software project. The best kind of software training shouldn’t feel like a dull class—it should be interactive throughout all points of your software journey.
For more information on your own upcoming enterprise software implementation and integration, or advice on how to whip your own CRM and ERP training strategy into shape, contact a consultant at Datix today. We've served as ERP, CRM, eCommerce and integration experts for over 20 years, making us a one-stop shop for software solutions and services. Our experience has equipped us with effective strategies for successful software projects. Reach out to us to get your entire enterprise on board with your new solution!