When buying a new ERP system, many companies tend to focus on the features or the initial cost of the business software, yet spend little to no time considering the importance of high-quality ERP training.
Let’s face it – the choice to purchase an ERP system is a difficult one that requires the investment of significant time and resources. After spending valuable time and money, it’s natural to expect that your business processes will run more efficiently and smoothly across your company’s business units.However, in order to gain all of the necessary benefits that you expect from your ERP investment, it is important that the effort does not stop with the initial purchase of the system. Many organizations that have purchased an ERP system admit to only using a percentage of its capabilities, which means that they are not fully capitalizing on their ERP investment. Your users must have access to proper knowledge and training so that they may utilize all of the system’s capabilities to their fullest.
High-quality ERP training has many benefits, including:
- Awareness - When users know where the data they use comes from, and who will use the data they create, it helps to keep them engaged and aware of the system’s complete capabilities. If people are simply trained to hit certain keys or run menu items in a certain sequence, not only do they get bored, they will not understand enough about the system to help with process improvements.
- Knowledge Transfer – If only one or a few of your employees knows how to properly use an ERP system, the organization becomes vulnerable. Relying on a small subset of users within the organization means that your system knowledge can dwindle quickly in the event that one of these users leaves the company. Fully training all ERP users helps to better ensure that your business won’t skip a beat in the event that a user leaves or a new employee arrives.
- Protection of Your Investment – When your company makes the decision to purchase an ERP software system, the expectation is that this investment will benefit your company for years to come. However, just like any software system, it is only as good as those who use it. Although features like business process management and business activity monitoring help to greatly reduce manual administration, these processes still need to be facilitated by a user who is knowledgable of the system and how it should benefit your organization.
Without proper training, you may hear common gripes within your organization that the ERP system doesn’t work or doesn’t have the required capabilities. Often times, the ERP system has more capabilities than you can imagine – you just need a qualified trainer to help you understand how to best use these capabilities within your organization.
Many ERP vendors offer training options, but it is important to thoroughly assess your company’s needs and the offerings of the vendor.