Getting Training Right for Go-Live

16th April 2021

Go-live is an exciting and intimidating time in every Salesforce project.

How do organizations ensure go-live does the following?

  • Achieves overarching success..
  • Leads to users adopting strategies
  • Leads to project sponsors achieving return of their investment quickly.

All of this takes planning far ahead of your go-live date.

Timing

When deploying a new Salesforce solution, timing is important. Discuss what else is on your end-users plate during go-live. Will they be ready to go-live according to the project plan, or are they undergoing other changes such as launching a new product or restructuring their sales organization?

Avoid holidays that may delay a deployment and impact end-user enablement. It is also recommended to avoid deploying any new solutions during routinely busy periods such as end of month or quarters.

Communication

Communication really is key. As you approach go-live, the organization stakeholders must know what change is coming and how it will impact them.

Communication should be tailored to each impacted user group - what do they need to do prepare and how will they be supported during go-live and after. Don’t be afraid to over-communicate in a variety of channels, every step of the way, people much rather have more information than not enough.

Training

Plan to train and enable your team close to but before go-live. Training too soon will result in people forgetting things, and training after go-live can create unnecessary errors and risk the adoption of new tools and processes.

With the recent switch to virtual work, training is occurring more than ever since we don’t have the ability to walk over and ask a colleague for support. Plan to train your team with exactly what they need to know - an approach we call “just in time training”.

When applying “just in time training” less is more. You don’t need a long lecture; provide the essential information for each impacted user group. For example; sales may not need the ins and outs of the finance process, only whom to contact and when it is necessary for them to reach out to those team members.

While we may not be in rooms together for training and go-live preparedness we need to keep training live and interactive. Training needs to be engaging and actively involve the end user  with activities such as hands on exercises, knowledge checks and participation demos.

Create scenarios for each business unit so your team can learn and immediately apply the content to their role in the new system. Scenario based training ensures end users can practice in a training sandbox before applying what they’ve learned and have to do as their day-to-day tasks.  Always allow time in training for users to do practice exercises during training.

Training is NOT a one time event - after the training for go-live ends, you should:

  • Immediately begin developing refresher content.
  • Create a meeting cadence to re-engage with the end users.
  • Have a support strategy and point of contact who will check up on their progress using the new system and tools.

There are many opportunities to train people outside of formal training sessions.  We recommend regular lunch & learn sessions. Require managers to bring up training topics in team meetings. You may even be able to create e-learning videos with key information, processes and important reinforcement points.

Neocol has a full service change management team to support every size project; our team is certified in Salesforce, training and instructional design to maximize speed to adoption. Reach out for a customized proposal to ensure you get it right before go-live.

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