On our Train the Trainer courses in-house, we get involved in the design of training in many unique training situations. Recently, I was involved in the creation of training for trainers who are involved in Systems Training. When we deliver training on software or computer systems, this type of training is known as Systems Training. Effective training is essential for any successful new software or system implementation. When we deliver training on new software or a new system, the five pillars of instruction (Structure, Question Technique, Personal Qualities, Aids and Content) are still valid. 

Top tips for effective Systems Training delivery:

Ask People What They Want To Know – If you can, send an agenda out beforehand and use a survey to determine what they believe needs to be addressed.

Establish A Contract – Sending an etiquette type list can be helpful. Reinforcing this with an effective contract can help with potential issues, e.g. phones or making mistakes. Remember, when we create a contract, this is best conducted at the start of the training. It can be re-addressed during the training. Effective use of reasoning techniques when creating a contract will aid individual input and, therefore, compliance.

Practical Application Is Essential – You can’t deliver Systems Training by using a lecture as a standalone option. There needs to be a practical application and practise throughout. When done correctly, training should be fun and interactive. Practise scenarios are a great way to implement learning. When appropriate, trainers can then step back and allow learners to experiment.

Allow Mistakes – Whenever we learn anything new, we make mistakes. We would argue you have to make mistakes to really learn anything well. As a trainer, we should encourage mistakes to be made, and by doing this, you will encourage individuals not to feel bad when they make one. We should actively promote them and the subsequent learning that comes from making them!

Group Learners – Putting varying skills levels together can create a beneficial mentoring process in place. People learn from others, and if you encourage effective teamwork in the contract to help others, this will be rewarded with collaborative learning.

Allow Reflection – Give people an opportunity to reflect on their learning; it will help identify strengths and development opportunities. This can be done at the end of each session and reinforced at the beginning of the next session. Questions such as ‘What could we do differently’ is a compelling coaching question.

Ralph Moody is the founder of Target Training and specialises in trainer and management development.  You can read more about him here.