Ramp time is generally the time between when a company hires a new employee and when he/she begins to produce at his/her new job, at a level that is proficient and independent of constant need of assistance. For reasons such as cost, project deadlines and team productivity, it is understandable that companies would want to speed up this period, and get new trainees up to higher competency levels as soon as possible.
Even when onboarding new employees to a complex business software like NetSuite, the benefits are not realized immediately or do not materialize until user has embraced it and is producing using the new applications and processes.
Below are 5 tips to accelerate the time period for new NetSuite users, and even make it as short as possible.
1. Define Productivity
To begin with, you cannot expect new employees to produce if there is no clear definition of productivity. You may use the following metrics to define productivity: social reach, time to revenue, lead to opportunity conversion, pipeline generation and management, all the above, etc. Clearly define productivity right at the beginning and ensure you are consistent. Moreover, your goals should be specific, measurable, and achievable for the specific activity and time. This will set the bar for your reps.
2. Personalize the Learning Experience
First, NetSuite administrators (or sales managers and training managers, whoever it may be) need to understand that the learning journey is never the same for everyone. New employees possess different talents, come from different backgrounds, and have gone through different experiences in their life, so sticking to a one-size-fits-all training program for everyone may not be effective. In addition, people learn in different ways and different pace, and this is why software that tailors learning to each individual’s skills and experience is more effective in keeping employees motivated.
3. Learn as You Work
Even the most effective training programs are no exception, as some studies show that as much as 80% of new information learned during onboarding period is soon forgotten. However, using effective, real-time guidance technologies such as WalkMe – which encourages employees to learn any software on their own – can help encourage employees to remember and apply new knowledge and accomplish tasks on their own without asking for help from coworkers or supervisor. This is because employees can receive direct and immediate step-by-step guidance, when they need it, so that they can complete their tasks more accurately.
4. Assign the Most Appropriate Mentor
Pairing up a new employee with another one who has been in the company for some time so they can have “small talk” or gossip at the coffee shop will not help to achieve the desired results. Instead, pair up new hires with experienced NetSuite users so they can benefit from a meaningful, structured mentoring program to shorten the ramp period. The new employee will also find a person to ask various questions.
5. Encourage Immediate Application of Skills Learned
As mentioned earlier, only a small percentage of new information learned is retained by new employees once the software onboarding period is over. It’s critical to encourage immediate, real-life application of skills and knowledge to help cement newfound information.
You cannot afford to let new NetSuite users linger for an extended time period; their productivity (or lack of it) directly affects you. So, take the responsibility and ensure you come up with an effective program to help shorten the ramp time.