How One Learning Organization Turned Adversity on Its Head
By guest blogger Sue Martin, Global Certification Manager, SAP
In 2008, our education organization at SAP faced a perfect storm that forced us to rethink the way we did learning. It’s a challenge that others may still be facing.
The economy hit our customers and channel partners hard, so they had smaller budgets to spend on traditional instructor-led training.
In addition, our business changed overnight, as the result of multiple SAP acquisitions. This transformed our channel partner landscape from a few organizations into a vast ecosystem of partners, consultants, and independents, who worked globally selling, implementing and supporting SAP software. Most of our new partners were small companies with limited resources, time and budget for training.
Our partners demanded more collaborative learning and more peer-to-peer interaction so that they could learn from each other and collaborate on global projects.
For our extended enterprise to successfully sell and support more SAP products, we needed an easy and less obtrusive way to access training.
Very early on, we realized that our learning technology would be a key part of overcoming these challenges. We began by implementing a learning environment that:
- Expanded our learning technologies to provide a global environment for social and collaborative learning.
- Developed a user-friendly “Amazon-like” front end that made self-service possible.
- Focused the technology to support virtual and modular learning, which our customers demanded.
The results have been impressive, with a large increase in virtual training consumption and to our surprise; the evaluation scores have actually been higher than traditional classroom courses.
Feedback from customers and partners has been excellent. Global channel partners with complex training and information needs who need training fast can easily find courses, enroll, cancel, and develop blended learning solutions that are tailored to their unique projects and staff.
Our ultimate goal is to enable the ecosystem to empower partners and employees to maximize the value of the customer’s SAP investment. We are pleased with the results so far, and are happy to be heading in a very positive direction.
As Sue points out, it takes a highly flexible, user-friendly LMS to engage channel partners, and encourage them to consume the training they need to sell your products successfully. It also takes a solid learning strategy. Your competitors know this, but making it happen is a big challenge. Here are more insights from other partner education leaders:
- Case Study: How Autodesk leveraged the power of its massive reseller network with ExpertusONE cloud LMS.
- Think Tank Summary: What learning executives say is essential for successful channel training programs.
- Webinar On-Demand: How to Build a World-Class Partner Certification Program.
To learn more about how our cloud-based LMS can make channel training more accessible and effective for your company, contact us at Expertus firstname.lastname@example.org.
Editorial Note: Thanks to our guest author, Sue Martin, Global Certification Manager, SAP. Do you have a real-world enterprise learning story to share, or do you have further questions about this topic? Contact our editor anytime at email@example.com.
Photo credit: Storm in the Sea by Rodolfo Belloli.