Following the investment in a Source to Pay system, you need to ensure you are achieving the best return and you are using it to its full potential. Your users need to know how to use the system, your system administrators must have sufficient understanding of its workings, and your suppliers should know how to interact with your business.
Training is a key component of implementing a new system, and even if your system has been operating for some time it is well worth providing a refresher or targeted training. An investment made in training saves time and money in the long run, by reducing errors and the level of queries raised with your support structure.
Further on, we will present the reasons why you should train, who to train, which are the types of training you may be using and a bunch of other useful tips and tricks to be considered.
Training needs will vary depending on where you are in terms of system maturity. Performance reviews or KPI scores may also highlight specific training needs that are holding people back from reaching their full potential or impacting efficiency.
Who to train?
Anyone who interacts with your system should have sufficient training to enable them to carry out their role effectively.
To ensure your business continues to run smoothly after go-live, users should be familiar with all the operations they are required to carry out, such as raising purchase requisitions, onboarding suppliers.
They will need a more in-depth training programme than users as they need to understand not only the standard business processes, but how the parameters and data within the system affect its functionality.
|Most Source to Pay systems involve some digital interactions with suppliers on processes such as the flipping of electronically received POs into electronic invoices. To ensure these interfaces run smoothly, you should provide training to the relevant suppliers.|
Types of trainingIn these days of social distancing there has been a move away from face-to-face training to remote methods such as webinars and videos, but printed materials will still be useful for participants to refer to. Some of the types of training you should consider are: printed materials (like manuals, workbooks), intranet content and eBooks, videos, webinars or classroom trainings. All of these methods have some pros and cons, and choosing one over the other depends on what works best for your company.
Training planThe purpose of a training plan is to communicate to all those involved the training objectives, who will be trained, in what parts of the system, and when. Depending on the methods of training delivery the plan should include details of dates, logistics such as hardware, security access, attendees, and trainers.
Attendance and EngagementIn our experience, non-attendance at training events is common and you should plan to minimise this problem. Communicate often with invitees to prompt their attendance. Once attendees are participating in the training, take steps to keep them engaged. Keep sessions short with enough breaks. Record attendance at each session to enable follow up training if necessary.
LanguagesWe have found that local language training can significantly increase the success of the training and, if some of your users are not native English speaking, it should be included in your plan. Webinars are particularly suitable for this multi-language delivery as different language sessions can be scheduled on different dates.
Our experience has suggested that the following tips should improve the effectiveness of the training you deliver:
- Tailor training specifically to your need and your budget
- Keep training materials up to date, reviewing them whenever changes are made to systems or processes
- Track attendance at training and follow up
- Consider linking training to access to a new system, allowing access only when training has been completed
- Create an inventory of training materials so that change impacts can be easily assessed.