BT profits from using Tutor to train staff in software upgrade

Rob
McLuhan describes how a training package which delivers support straight to users’
desks smoothed BT’s introduction of a new version of accountancy software

Training
staff in a new version of software can be one of an organisation’s biggest
headaches. When BT Europe needed to upgrade the Oracle accounting software used
by 100 key staff it wanted to do so in a way that would impose the least
burden.

But
the upgrade involved moving from a character-based interface to a graphical
one, which would mean substantial changes and potential disruption for the
system’s users.

BT
chose Oracle’s Tutor training, which it believed would make it easier for
existing users to learn the new system and provide new users with better
training facilities.

"Tutor
also offered us two clear business benefits," says Alan Womack, finance
system manager at BT Europe. "It would reduce the burden on our department
of dealing with a lot of fairly routine queries and it would also help us to
provide a better service to our end-users."

Although
the company had used Oracle courses for training staff in new upgrades, it had
previously relied on expert users within BT to coach new recruits in using the
system. But this "train the trainer" approach was less than ideal,
Womack points out. "The expert users who are supposed to provide training
are usually extremely busy, and training other people is a low priority for
them," he explains.

Using
Tutor, training and support can be delivered straight to users’ desks, in a
form that is easy for them to use. It is also valued for the ease with which it
can be tailored to reflect real procedures in the organisation.

The
team supporting users has seen a reduction in the routine queries that used to
take up a disproportionate amount of its time. Used in conjunction with
strategic end-user training, it has helped ease what could have been a major
transition to the new version of the finance system, Womack says.

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