One of the most important factors that determines the success of any new software rollout is how quickly staff are able to master it,
and accept it as part of their daily working lives. A 3D kitchen planning solution is no different. Kitchen retailers considering training approaches at the deployment stage are already ahead of the curve: for many organizations, post-deployment training is an afterthought.
An easy-to-use 3D kitchen planning solution combined with a proactive training strategy will be characterized by short learning curves, productivity gains and clarity among staff on how the solution fits into their working days. For this type of successful rollout where staff are excited by the potential of the tool and eager to use it, deployment and training must be considered in parallel.
Diversified program to support multiple learner types
It would come as no surprise to most business leaders that classroom-style training remains the most widely used training method even today, accounting for 42% of a company’s training hours on average. A subject matter expert or training manager prepares a classroom experience – usually a lecture-style presentation with a PowerPoint as a visual accompaniment – and presents in front of a group of trainees.
However, this is an outdated trend: training experts agree that different people respond best to different types of learning approaches. For example, some might respond well to self-driven learning to be accessed independently online. Others might prefer to be guided through the tool via virtual training and others still, might respond best to the classic face-to-face instructor-led learning experience. Depending on the size and location of the workforce, organizations might consider a mix of techniques: in fact, almost 70% of training in 2018 in the US was delivered with blended learning techniques.
Learning platforms with short, manageable modules
This is an era of short attention spans and limited time, where skilled staff like kitchen designers have multiple demands on their availability. It is therefore unlikely that designers will be able to take significant time out of their days to attend extended training sessions. What’s more, for a multifaceted 3D kitchen planning solution, it might be difficult for employees to absorb all the aspects of the platform at one sitting.
Retailers could consider creating a learning platform hosted on the corporate intranet or delivered via an app, that provides 3-4 minute capsules on the various aspects of the solution, such as creating a room, incorporating building rules, how to populate a catalogue, creating concept rooms, pricing strategies, and more. Staff would have the flexibility to download and review these modules as time permits, and also have the option to revisit modules at their convenience. This approach is gaining currency around the world: one study found that 77% of American companies offer e-learning as a professional development tool.
Gamification to whip up excitement
Gamification is one of the hottest new trends in corporate learning today, holding out the potential to make even mundane learning experiences more engaging, and motivating employees to pursue learning and practice more actively with recognition and rewards. Offering custom-built, simple learning games as part of the training around a 3D design solution makes important information more memorable, and provides a way to measure progress towards learning objectives.
Gamification can be implemented at various levels for a 3D design solution: the simplest way is to award tokens or points as employees complete certain modules or hours of training. A slightly more sophisticated approach could be to track learning outcomes, for instance by creating friendly competitions in free tools like Kahoot.
Taking this one step further, gamification can be used to track how training translates into job performance. For instance, training might involve participants selling a certain number of kitchens by using the 3D planning solution in order to win points, which could be redeemed for vouchers or even financial incentives. This cements the idea that the knowledge that participants are gaining, translates to real revenue for the company, plus money in their own pockets too.
‘On the job training’ with built-in rules
An equivalent of one day a week is wasted by employees in searching for information: and in the case of kitchen design, this commonly consists of searching for the appropriate local building regulations, that might affect the design that a consumer is interested in. An important element of training and upskilling is to ensure that concise and relevant information about building rules is available to kitchen designers right when they need it. These tools provide immediate just-in-time guidance and support, ensuring that employees are more efficient and productive at their job.
Advanced 3D planning solutions enable retailers to minimize errors and accelerate use by incorporating these building rules and guidelines into the platform itself, with the latest regulations being automatically updated in real time. Simple alert signs within the tools flag to designers that a particular plan is not compliant and needs review. By providing these automated ‘steers’, the most intelligent 3D planning solutions will improve teams’ knowledge of industry standards on the job.
A blended approach works best
3D modelling solutions have the potential to transform kitchen design experts’ productivity, conversion rates and value to the organization. Staff in turn will be better skilled, motivated, and provide added value to consumers. However, the right training is essential.
The widespread adoption of digital platforms and communications has irrevocably changed employees’ response to training and development. The training process and tools retailers use to bring staff up to speed with 3D modelling solutions need to evolve accordingly to keep up with these changes. With employees differing widely in age, comfort with new technologies, and learning approach, a blended approach to training is ideal.
To further explore how a 3D planning solution can support team training, increase efficiency, and ensure consistently high quality across an expanding workforce, visit our website built specifically to serve kitchen retailers where you can organize a demonstration of the platform with a member of expert team.