Training on eSourcing Tools – How to Make it “Sticky”

How can you make the training on your new eSourcing platform “sticky”?

You may be wondering what I mean by sticky. I may not be able to give you a perfect answer. What I do know is that the trainer succeeds in making the student a believer in themselves.

Sticky training makes the average performer great and the great performer a superstar.

Let me share a great success story that should illustrate my thoughts.

“Mary” is a career purchasing professional with more than 20 years of experience with a large retail company. This retailer relied on offline tools like Excel, email, Word and PDFs to conduct sourcing events.

She recently joined a fast-growing organization that purchased a cloud-based eSourcing platform to manage their purchasing and procurement events.

The company that provided the eSourcing platform believes in hands-on training. They don’t provide a manual or video training. In their experience that type of training just doesn’t work very well.

Instead, the trainer works one-on-one with the new user to set up and launch live events. People working on “their own stuff” are much more interested and focused. They know the details and simply need to be taught how to apply them in the new tool.

The First Event

The trainer walked Mary through her first event. In the training, Mary was taught how to complete a task and then she “pushed all the buttons” to complete it.

To be fair, it was a challenge. Even though she knew what was needed based on her prior experience, it took about 6 hours for her to get the event ready to launch. The training normally takes 3 hours on an initial event.

At the end of the event the trainer showed Mary how she could copy and paste some or all of the information from the first event into her next event.

The Second Event

To start the training on the second event, the trainer again reviewed the areas that could be copied and walked Mary through that process.

Mary’s knowledge of sourcing played a big part in the second event. She quickly realized that much of the information in the first event could be “reused” or quickly modified. She was able to quickly set up the supplier information and qualification requirements. She also used the previous bid template as a base and modified it with some assistance and recommendations from the trainer.

The time to complete and launch the second event was 2 hours – a huge improvement and Mary was proud of her progress.

The Third Event

At the start of her third event, Mary suggested that she wanted to set it up on her own without instruction unless she asked for it.

Just over 1.5 hours later she was done and smiling.

Mary and the trainer reviewed the event together. The suggestions the trainer made were cosmetic.

They agreed that before the next event that they would focus on advanced shortcuts that would help her to save even more time.

Can it really be that easy? I believe it is. These are my two main thoughts:

  1. The approach used by the trainer is effective because they are patient and willing to let the student make mistakes.
  2. The strategy used by the company works because people are motivated when they are working on their own projects.

I have presented at conferences on a national, regional and local level. The questions people ask are almost always personal. “I am working on this challenge, what would you suggest?”

If the eSourcing tools at your company are not being used, perhaps the tools are too complicated or the training is too general.

Action Step: Every organization wants to increase the efficiency and effectiveness of their procurement group. If the tools in your company are gathering dust, a procurement professional like myself can provide guidance and expertise to help your organization achieve the results you want. If you would like to explore this topic in greater detail, please contact me.

If you want to explore a purchasing or procurement topic in greater detail, I invite you to request 30-minute discovery conversation. In my experience the next step will be apparent at the end of the call. I never assume that my recommendations will be right for everyone, so don’t expect a sales pitch. You can reach me at 973-936-9672.

Organizations of all sizes are reducing costs and increasing efficiency, without changing the way they conduct business. If you would like to know how, simply give me a call or send me an email with your contact information and the best time to reach you.

You Won’t Drift to Success©
Think about it.
Until Next Time, I Wish You Great Success in Your Business and in Your Life
Mike Jeffries