Training across business lines and languages – the multilingual jungle

September 9, 2009 at 9:39 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

The first project i handled was quite a complex one – supporting the rollout of a new system to users across The Netherlands.  We produced 10 e-learning modules in 2 languages, support documentation, trainer packs, and an updated e-campus site in under 2 months ! Lots of work ! So here’s a bit of info :

  • In April business trainers approached us to let us know that there was going to be a big software rollout in the Dutch retail organisation and that they needed e-learning lessons – in English AND Dutch !
  • We took a step back – asked ‘What’s the real problem here?’ ‘What will be most effective in supporting users through this rollout?’
  • 1500+ end users – the business trainers were going to train 100 champions in short 3 hr face to face workshops – these champions would then go on to train their colleagues as needed.
  • Geographic dispersion of staff: 300 offices, 13 districts, 1500+ total end users
  • Roll out timeframes: face to face training was delivered 4 weeks before rollout – danger of the training becoming irrelevant or effectiveness lost due to time between training and implementation
  • Wider change context: the software was only a small piece in the big change process happening within the organisation – how do we make sure our efforts have most impact?

Our Solution

  • After analysis we decided that an integrated training approach – not just producing an e-learning to solve our problem today but take a step back and look at the wider context and what was needed. Our solution solved the pressing issues and was also robust enough to support this implementation and others in the long run.
  • The solution consisted of a suite of support documents and e-learning lessons (4 main components: Pre work e-Learning, Trainings, Practical Labs and After Care Support) to support the immediate rollout and future trainings by the business trainers and by the champions out in the business. The deliverables we delivered were:

E-learning modules: The e-learning modules covered the basics of the software. They were designed to be used as pre-work for the super user trainings, as standalone training for the remaining 1500 users and in the After Care as refreshers. These modules ensure the delivery of consistent information across the whole user group at any point in time.

Learner and Manager packs: The Learner and Manager packs provided information on how to prepare for the training, including a pathway recommending what resources to access and when, tips on getting the most out of the resources etc. These packs will be handed to users during the training roadshow.

Trainer Kits: The trainer kits provided the super users with the key points covered in the trainings and advice on how to best pass on this knowledge to their colleagues. They also included recommendations on how to structure a small coaching session, activities for users etc.

PDF Practice labs: This consisted of a sheet of activities that users follow and complete once they get back to their desks. This helps shorten the time delay between the trainings and the use of the software.

Quick Reference Guides/Cheat Sheets: These outlined key steps/tasks in the software. They were designed to be used as memory joggers after the workshop sessions or the e-learning.

How did we do it?

  • What did we need to coordinate? Different teams, different deliverables, different languages, – integrated training approach was new to us. Some of the deliverables were new to us
  • What did we pull together in 2 months? New eCampus portal, 5 English  eLearnings, 4 Dutch  elearnings, 8 English support docs, 8 Dutch support docs, training kits, staff kits.
  • The translation of all our deliverables was the most challenging part and required a complete new way of project managing. The complex jargon and subject matter meant that all external translations needed to be reviewed internally – making the development cycle much longer.
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