The debate rages on. Structured Training or Knowledge Transfer for your project teams?
Okay class, raise your hands if you’ve heard this one: “You can’t have your cake and eat it too. “I say why not? Same for training. Why wouldn’t you take every opportunity to learn from the people who can help you?
To be clear, when we talk about knowledge transfer we mean the informal, on-the-job sharing of SAP knowledge that systems integrators (SIs) are so good at providing during SAP implementation project. On the other hand, structured training can take many forms depending on how you like to learn and what you’re learning. Think classroom, self-paced learning, collaboration, and so on.
What’s your perspective? Are you a consultant who’s provided knowledge transfer in a project? Or, have you experienced the other side of the coin ꟷ as a learner preparing for a project or executing one? Based on your experiences, how can people learn best?
To start the conversation, I asked some of our resident training experts for advice to share with you. Here’s what they came up with:
- It’s best to start learning as soon as possible. Once your business decides to deploy an SAP solution (or is seriously considering a decision), it’s the perfect time for your people to hit the classroom to learn about its functionality, the business processes it supports, and configuration options. This will help them understand the possibilities of the SAP solutions you’re implementing. For those taking part in system design workshops, it will make it easier to play an active role in deciding how your systems can best be configured to achieve your business objectives.
- Classroom training is still cool. Let’s face it, sometimes it’s best to have an instructor to guide you in a live learning session. Like when you’re prepping for an exam ꟷ it helps to understand which topics will be covered! Or, maybe you’re learning something super-technical like programming. And what if you want to collaborate with peers in similar roles at different companies? Come to class! These days most SAP “classroom” training is held virtually via SAP Live Class. But that’s okay. You get the same course materials, the same training systems, and the same expert SAP instructors leaning over your shoulder (virtually) to help you learn.
- Pay attention to your SIs ꟷ they can teach you a lot! We haven’t forgotten about knowledge transfer delivered by SIs. After all, these are the people you hired to make your SAP implementation project a success! They know SAP, and with every project they build their expertise in cloud deployments. Make sure your people take the time to learn from them. Here’s a hint: SAP Learning Hub coupled with SAP Live Access is an ideal learning platform for 1:1 knowledge transfer sessions with consultants in a live, pre-configured training system.
- Sometimes you need to “go private” with your training. SAP’s public training is great. But sometimes it’s better to have training sessions just for your team. This is not only possible, but it can also be economical. SAP can deliver customer specific training that takes standard SAP training and configures it to your needs. This allows us to emphasize standard course modules that are most useful to you. Also, since training is for your team only, all questions, class discussions, and sidebar conversations will focus on the challenges of your business.
- SAP innovation never stops. Learning shouldn’t either. SAP cloud applications are updated quarterly. To unlock this innovation, your people need to stay current on SAP technology updates. SAP Learning Hub provides the latest delta training to keep your people current on the latest innovations in the solutions you rely on. Your team can also use the hub to expand their knowledge to other SAP solutions you’ve implemented or are considering.
Here’s the bottom line: Start learning early. Learn from the best. Keep learning. And if you bring cake to class, bring enough for everyone.
Have thoughts on this blog? We’d love to hear from you in the Comments section below. If you need information about SAP training, check out our SAP Learning Journeys. And, if you’d like to contact us directly please send an e-mail to us in the Americas, Europe, or APJ and Greater China.