The training phase of a Salesforce implementation project is an opportunity to drive end-user adoption. Training serves as a way to build a strong knowledge foundation, understand team members’ motivations and expectations, and increase user proficiency.
Here are 6 tips to consider when training and preparing Salesforce end users:
Setting and Learning Expectations
Coming into training, understanding attendees’ motivations and what they are most interested in learning about can help to ensure the training is tailored to the audience’s needs. As a trainer it is also essential to set expectations of what will and will not be covered during the time together.
To help keep the conversation on track, a Parking Lot can be utilized to curate questions and suggestions. Whether it is using a Q&A Chat if video conferencing or post-it notes and a piece of chart paper in person, a Parking Lot can be used for questions, opportunities for follow-up, or ideas for system enhancements. It is important to maintain the expectations of training and not get caught up in the minutiae.
Scaffold for Understanding – “I Do, We Do, You Do”
The ultimate outcome of Salesforce training is for the attendees to be comfortable and proficient to be able to utilize the system independently. For this reason, a strategy such as “I Do, We Do, You Do” is helpful to progress the training from the hands of the trainer, to practicing together, to the end users applying what they have learned on their own.
Since everyone learns differently, it is beneficial to not only scaffold and model how to navigate the system but also to do so with an emphasis on different learning styles. Some trainees may be visual learners, auditory or even kinesthetic learners who learn best when able to get hands-on in the instance. For both the training delivery itself and accompanying materials, it is important to consider not only various learning modalities, but also accessibility and inclusivity as well.
Providing documentation is also a helpful way to provide support for learners who learn in different ways and at a different pace. Whether it is recording the training or creating a manual or e-course, attendees can refer back to supplemental resources as a written compliment to the live training demo and discussion they participated in.
Check for Understanding and Gather Feedback
To ensure attendees are understanding content, it is important to provide checks for understanding and opportunities to collect feedback throughout the different phases of the training. As a trainer, the feedback shared can help to identify areas where additional review or supplemental support resources may be needed.
Utilizing a pre- and post-survey can show end users’ knowledge gains across the session, as well as can capture motivations and expectations and how well the training achieved its targeted outcomes. Also implementing knowledge checks can add to the self-reported knowledge gains and check in on how well attendees are understanding the content whether in person or completing the training online.
As mentioned earlier, the Parking Lot can be used to gather ideas and suggestions for system enhancements and to compile questions that can be answered during the training or as a follow-up.
Find Your Power Users and System Champions
Power Users, just like the training itself, are integral for a Salesforce implementation’s success. As a built-in person for other end users to go to with questions and for best practices, Power Users help to champion the project and can demonstrate a strong sense of business processes to be able to support the day-to-day workings of the system.
Training provides an opportunity to provide a leadership opportunity for existing Power Users to model and support other end users or could serve as a chance to identify System Champions based on their questions and engagement within the training sessions.
Whether it is leading a breakout group or driving a demo, Power Users can model for other end users what an internal team member is capable of doing within the system and provide an aspirational example of system utilization.
Go Live in a Sandbox and Find Creative Ways to Involve Attendees
Rather than solely relying on a slide deck or screenshots, going live with a demo in the system can be a way to engage the audience and give actual exposure to the Salesforce org. Power Users or a volunteer can even be given the opportunity to drive the live demo as an opportunity to practice their Salesforce skills.
As part of the training, setting up a sandbox for end users to be able to practice in is a helpful way for users to experience and test out their understanding of processes and navigation in a safe environment. As mentioned with the “I Do, We Do, You Do” instructional strategy, the sandbox is a place where users can practice within the system with little worry of making a mistake or trying something new.
Sandboxes and additional practice exercises can also be made available outside of training time for end users to apply their new knowledge and gain additional experience within Salesforce.
Make it Fun and Keep the Training Momentum Going
Whether it is embedding a little healthy competition with a Kahoot! game or ensuring there are plenty of snacks out of the table, adding a little bit of fun to the training goes a long way. System scavenger hunts, user role plays, and session icebreakers are all ways to engage attendees and make training more enjoyable for the audience.
Recognizing training is not a one-time event is an important aspect of a successful training experience. To help keep the learning going, pre-reading materials and Trailhead module recommendations can be provided before a training, while reviewing content during an All Hands Meeting or a Lunch or Learn can be used as a follow-up step.
The influence of a positive training experience on Salesforce end users should not be underestimated. We hope that with these 6 tips in mind, you are set up for success to support your Salesforce end users and kick off a meaningful training experience.
For more information on Salesforce training best practices, be sure to check out the resource links below!
- Trailhead Module: User Training and Enablement
- Resource Center Article: How to Train Yourself and Others to Use CRM
- Video: Effective End User Training
If your team is interested in learning more about training Salesforce users or how your users can best utilize Salesforce, connect with us via the website form at the bottom of this page or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.