Three methods for training your CRM users

When it comes to training your CRM users, what is the most suitable method for your company?  Should you go down the route of face-to-face, e-learning or even self-setup?  Here we are going to take a look at all three, analyzing the pros and cons of each:

1. Face-to-face CRM training

Digital may be rife and everything may seem to be becoming virtual, but that is not the case when it comes to this type of training. If your company would suit a more hands-on approach, then this is for you.

Pros

  • Ease of communication between trainer and group – use of speech and body language
  • Fully interactive – learners can get involved in practical exercises overseen by the trainer
  • Fewer distractions and ensures that users actually complete training

Cons

  • Possible travel involved depending upon location – may result in higher cost and wasted time in-transit
  • Chunks of time spent away from work-related activity potentially longer, resulting in productivity loss. Difficult to organize for shift-based workforces
  • Instructor-led training generally more expensive

2. E-learning CRM training

If self-led online learning is a possibility for your workforce, this can be a good choice when properly implemented. E-learning can have a positive impact on employees as it allows them to fit training round their schedules - but make sure they are engaged enough to complete it without extensive management interference. 

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Pros

  • Access available 24/7, so employees can fit it around busy schedules
  • Lower cost than vendor-led demos – no need to pay for a trainer, and e-learning modules are often included in price of system
  • Employees can go at their own pace and review things they don't understand

Cons

  • Not suitable for
  • Learners don't learn together, so there is less support available
  • Less accessible for non tech-savvy users. Training can be impacted by internet connections or incompatible browsers

Self-setup CRM training

In this scenario, training responsibilities would normally be assigned to one or more members of staff ('superusers') who would then train employees in-house.

Pros

  • Cost - this can be a lot cheaper than other methods and works well as basic or 'top-up' training
  • Working as an internal trainer, your staff member will have a good understanding of the company’s processes and systems so will be able to customise the programme to suit

Cons

  • Quality – if the in-house trainer is not suitably skilled and knowledgeable, results can be disappointing.
  • Time – you will need to allow the trainer time to get up to speed with the new CRM before they can begin to instruct others.

Which type of CRM training is best for you?

So now you have the positives and negatives of all three methods, you can make your decision.  This will likely be influenced by:

  • What type of resources you have at your command in-house in order to deliver training via the self-setup route – you will need a suitably qualified individual and time for preparation as well as delivery of the training.
  • The demands of the CRM system – the more rigorous the input demanded from the users, the higher the quality of training needs to be.

If the system is going to be heavily process-oriented, then the e-learning and self-setup methods will be less effective as if you try to do this with insufficient attention to detail, there will be many possible failure points.

If you do opt for self-setup, make sure that you do not underestimate how much time the in-house trainer will need to become totally au-fait with the new system and able to spread the word effectively.

  • Training internally (self-setup) will only work if you have the right person to deliver it.
  • Training externally (face-to-face or e-learning) will only work if the organization providing the training has a good grasp of your company’s processes.

Whichever option you go for, it is essential to realize how important training is when it comes to users adopting the new system. Choosing the right approach first time will save you significant time and money in the long run.

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Jane Tareen

About the author…

An MBA-qualified professional, Jane specializes in all kinds of copywriting and creative content production. With many years spent working in advertising and publishing, she is also skilled in editorial production and proof-reading. Whilst writing, she has a constant companion in the form of one very large Fox Red Labrador!

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Jane Tareen

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