User training is essential when rolling out new software or expanding existing systems. Here the activity mustn’t focus solely on the functionalities of a system; it is much more necessary to present a new system within the context of a company’s business processes as THE tool to support its processes (and its functionalities in the context of these processes) and to provide training on this basis. For this reason, Linden-CRM recommends adopting a «train-the-trainer» approach:
Here Linden-CRM focuses on training and enabling the key users to pass on to other users their knowledge about the system combined with their expertise and experience in the relevant business processes.
The training concept comprises three elements: critical user training, user training, and training for internal administrators. It is also assumed that the key users will expand and consolidate their knowledge of the new system and its functionalities on an ongoing basis while working on projects (involvement in planning and review meetings, acceptance tests, etc.).
Key user training
Key user training comprises two main elements: basic training, which covers the basic functions of Salesforce, and «indirect» training, based on key users’ participation in review meetings where all new project-specific implementations are presented and revised. Key users can build on this knowledge and put it into practice by taking part in the acceptance tests. Key users should complete their basic training before the first UAT session. It takes the form of a one-day session with a maximum of 10 participants. The number of training sessions depends on the number of key users nominated. We recommend nominating at least one, but preferably two, key users from each organizational unit (functional and geographical).
The training sessions cover the following areas:
- General introduction to Salesforce
- Basic functionalities
- Interest management
- Account and contact management
- Security concept
- Specific content within the context of the implementation
User training (for all other users) is a combination of the general Salesforce basic training and the specific training, the contents of which depend on the roles and duties of the system users.
As mentioned above, it is recommended that the key users lead the user training sessions. This is advantageous as the training sessions can be held in parallel, decentralized, at the relevant company locations. In addition, the key users can pass on their practical experience from the UAT combined with their knowledge of internal business processes. They speak the same language as the users, appreciate the problems they encounter daily, and can use examples from their day-to-day work. This approach is especially helpful in increasing user acceptance of the new system.
The number of training sessions required depends on the number of future users and the number of critical users available to lead the sessions. We recommend allowing for a maximum of 10 to 15 participants per training session.
To assist critical users in holding user training sessions, Linden-CRM can provide additional resources to accompany the sessions and help key users with general Salesforce-related content and specific implementation issues. Assistance can also be provided in preparing the training documentation; however, this should, in principle, be put together by the key users themselves.
During and immediately after the go-live, Linden-CRM can provide support infrastructure if required.
The preferred communication channel is the Linden-CRM Customer Portal. Linden-CRM gives its customers access to this platform, where support queries are issued, answered, and documented accordingly. Other communication channels that can be used to resolve problems and communicate with Linden-CRM (e.g., telephone, web conferences) are used where it is necessary and practical to do so.
In the context of the Linden-CRM service processes, support means helping users to help themselves and does not involve any modifications or expansions for customers. Linden-CRM helps its customers independently resolve their problems by giving them the relevant know-how. A change request must be made if additional requirements, configuration changes, functional enhancements, or entire software upgrades are needed. Here Linden-CRM recommends initiating a structured change management process, which should also address the client’s organizational structure as a critical factor.
The response times for support queries are agreed upon within the relevant SLAs. Our international support team is staffed by employees with the requisite certified Salesforce expertise. If required, dedicated resources can also be provided, which – as part of a change management process – can be given in-depth training on the process and system landscapes both before and during the go-live. Thanks to our highly qualified support staff, we expect to resolve around 50% of queries immediately.