We learned about the Race for Mindshare last week, and how a strong, branded customer experience increases customer loyalty and accelerates the buying process. Training is a part of that experience that must be addressed on its own, as it’s an area where specialty manufacturers can increase their competitive edge quickly within a unified commerce environment.
There are many reasons why the “Old-Timey Training” approach doesn’t work anymore. Dated and obsolete paper training resources, as well as hard to navigate catalogs and giant repositories of information are a turnoff to a new generation of workers who have grown up with multimedia at their fingertips. Whether delivering the latest sales promotion, or maintenance updates for customer service technicians, training needs to be modern, cost-effective and fast.
By 2020, According to a PwC study, 50% of the workforce will consist of millennials. This generation not only values digital resources and interactive content, they demand it. In addition, they require access that is not anchored to a desktop by can be experienced via any mobile device, 24/7.
A unified commerce system incorporates the capabilities of a strong learning management system into the overall customer experience with a focus on modularized learning. Instead of a “one size fits all” approach, learning is packaged into components that are focused on specific objectives and outcomes. With the right content capabilities, you can create a portfolio of searchable titles for specific customers and scenarios. The easier it is to find the right information in the right format, the more likely your customers’ employees will consume and retain the information. This holds true whether it’s a channel partner trying to sell a new piece of equipment, or a service technician learning a new maintenance update.
Unified commerce can help deliver modern, effective training which in turn strengthens the overall customer experience. To build on that promise, training for the new workforce must demonstrate the following capabilities:
- The training experience must be customized for specific customers’ needs. That means creating targeted learning modules to achieve the objectives and outcomes required for each unique channel partner, distributor and reseller.
- Training must be provided via different methods. In some cases, paper manuals may still be effective while others might require video, audio or other means of delivery.
- Delivery is key, particularly via mobile devices. Training systems must be designed to be responsive, but they must also accommodate the need for print and more traditional delivery methods.
- Training effectiveness must be measurable. Specialty manufacturers need to determine not only the ROI of training systems, but also how well certain processes are working based on training completion, time spent on training and specific learning outcomes like tests and quizzes.
It cannot be forgotten that the ultimate goal of training is to increase value for your customers. A unified commerce solution eliminates old timey training with modern, effective learning management systems. The end result is not only a significant reduction in the time spent learning, it is a dramatic increase in the intellectual capital of your customers’ workforce.