So you have new users to SAP, and you’re trying to get them up to speed quickly.
It is common to find that after a company has invested a huge amount of money in training both old and new staff, a wide gap still remains between employees’ skill level at the end of their training and the time when they are fully proficient. Even after training new users on SAP platforms, training managers, SAP administrators, IT support staff, and team managers still have to deal with the many challenges that face their trainees. Even a meticulously planned and well-conducted training process does not guarantee competence, as some information is bound to be forgotten. This is because training is followed by a period when an employee is not yet fully capable of applying what he learned independently and proficiently.
The following are options for post-training guidance that team managers can apply to help employees attain full proficiency.
1. Provide Training Handouts
As the training manager, one of the best ways you can follow up on your training to help ensure transfer of key skills and knowledge to the job is to provide trainees with handouts that contain a summary of key information from the previous training session. You may use memory and job aids, including worksheets and checklists that trainees can take back to their respective workstations to implement training points. Make sure the handout is easy to use and highlights key information in bold. Use diagrams, charts, and pictures, if possible, as this will help you illustrate and reinforce the written information.
2. Use Performance Support Aids
Several technology aids for continuous learning and effective skills development are widely available, and training managers can utilize these tools to bridge the common gap between employee training and proficiency. They can ensure their employees learn online using instructional videos, social media sites, blogs and forums. These online guidance tools enable new users to obtain real-time assistance to enable them perform complex actions online. This way, employees can quickly master key skills learned during their initial training session by continuously practicing.
3. Lead by Example
A crucial post-training tip that team managers and team leaders can use to help employees remember what they have learned is by providing examples for team members to follow. Nearly all employees – old and new – look up to their supervisors, team leaders, and superior officers for guidance, inspiration, and motivation whenever they are performing a task for the first time.
4. Conduct Continuous Performance Monitoring
You need to continuously monitor the development of employee skills, as some results will only manifest in the long-term. Set up an effective system to enable your trainees grow continuously whilst you monitor their progress. Get direct feedback from team leaders or managers and supervisors, or set up an effective performance assessment system that evaluates the number of mistakes done, percentage speed improvement, number of times a trainee called for assistance and workload accomplished within a given time.
Even if there is no immediate improvement, don’t rush the employees; failed attempts to apply learned skills can still be viewed as learning opportunities rather than failures. Patience is the name of the game. Never “punish” an employee for attempting to apply or practice a new approach.