Training across the extended enterprise is all about reaching common business goals with the help of your channel partners — but to get there, you need learning objectives that set you up for success.
Make goal-crushing learning objectives to boost productivity
Learning objectives, like any other kind of business objectives, are specific ways to reach high-level organizational goals (think streamlining product production or improving customer experience). And the more specific, the better — follow the S.M.A.R.T. objectives formula (specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and timely). To maximize the ROI of your training program, objectives must be communicated clearly so learners in any part of the supply chain know what is expected of them and so you can keep score fairly.
Of course, these factors will depend on industry, workforce demographics, size, and company culture, to name a few. To keep you inspired, here are four examples of things to shoot for in your extended enterprise training program:
Inside-out product knowledge — One of the best ways to ramp up your productivity and ROI is ensuring workers spanning the supply chain know what the company has to offer and why it’s better than other options. Not only will this wealth of knowledge help reps provide appropriate recommendations (and upgrades), it will help empower employees to feel more confident in their roles (and their company).
For example, a tech company could require its channel partners to accurately describe all product offerings and their corresponding upgrades. Or, a frozen food manufacturer may require the employees to know how to identify improperly loaded products in order to prevent cross-contamination.
Mad skills with tools and tech — In a perfect world, having tools and systems in place across the enterprise would deliver cookie-cutter efficiency. But getting there requires that your workers and partners have plenty of tips and tricks up their sleeve.
A retailer’s objective might reflect this goal by requiring in-store staff to complete product returns in under five minutes by using shortcut key commands via customer sales software system.
Consistent (and awesome) brand experience — Every employee, whether in your warehouses or corporate headquarters, represents your company. Ensuring interactions with stakeholders are positive is a good idea for any organization — so create a learning objective that can help you spread the good vibes for all prospects and customers.
For instance, a software company might list the objective for all its employees (customer-facing or not) to possess knowledge of company values, its mission, and have a high-level understanding of product offerings.
Solid company-partner relations — When you can’t always mandate training for your vendors and partners, it’s important to establish a training objective for your external teams. You may want to require managers of resellers to clearly communicate sales processes and commission structure to minimize questions directed at the corporate office.
For extra credit (and productivity), create a certification program to ensure all partners are all-stars when it comes to how your organization gets things done.
How the right LMS can help you reach your goals
You can have all the fancy learning objectives you want, but without an efficient means to a goal-crushing end, you’re outta luck. The right LMS, like Bridge by Instructure, can set employees, and ultimately the company, up for success — here’s how:
Retention tools: The forgetting curve states learners will forget about half of the information they learn unless it’s repeated over a period of time. Product features, like Bridge Retain, ensure course information is remembered by sending follow-up quizzes at an established frequency for 30 days after training for maximum recall when it really counts.
Robust reporting: Track training analytics in real time. Use data like quiz scores, course adoption rates, and time spent on each course per learner to identify knowledge gaps and overall effectiveness of training, then optimize courses as needed.
Keeps learners in the loop: Online courses state objectives up front for learners so they know what to expect and can pay extra attention to the good stuff. And progress bars within the course show the ETA to course completion.
Measures mastery: Quizzes and evaluations make it easy to “check yes or no” on whether those objectives are met at the learner level. If individual learners aren’t getting it, they can retake courses and be reevaluated.
Flexibility and scale to fit your network: Most importantly for extended enterprises (emphasis on the “extended”), e-learning is deployable and scalable to your widespread network.
Mobile first: Today’s workforce is a phone-in-hand kind of gang, all the time, and that doesn’t exclude company training. A cloud-based, mobile-friendly LMS can be accessed on any device for anytime learning (and not just when they’re at their standing desks).
Remember, making S.M.A.R.T. learning objectives will create smart employees across the supply chain. Training a huge, widespread enterprise doesn’t have to be a lost cause, especially when e-learning makes it seamless. Download “The Handy Training Course Checklist For Your Enterprise” to start aligning your goals, objectives and courses while stepping up productivity and revenue.