I was chatting with my friend Colin Ashurst from Durham Business School this morning about the world of the information worker. He was saying he still thinks there needs to be more focus on helping get the technology deployed and getting people to use it. I think he's right, especially with all the new stuff Microsoft has produced in the last 6 months. One helpful resource that I think should be highlighted is the Enterprise Learning Framework.
To quote the site:
The Enterprise Learning Framework (ELF) is a tool that helps corporations develop a training and communication plan for employees during Windows Vista and the 2007 Microsoft Office system deployment. The ELF identifies the most relevant learning topics on Windows Online Help and Office Online for different stages of deployment and different types of users. With the Enterprise Learning Framework you can:
Minimize concern by preparing employees for deployment and raising awareness of the new versions’ benefits Minimize disruption on deployment day by getting employees up to speed with a short list of "must know" topics Select tips-and-tricks and other productivity topics to help employees get the most from Windows Vista and the 2007 Office release after deployment
The site takes you through a little wizard, what applications are you deploying, what stage of the deployment are you (month before, on the day, week after etc.) and what kind of users are they. It then gives you a list of resources.
I think it is a good idea, there needs to be more material added to it - I was underwhelmed by the lack of Groove materials there, however the principal is a good one. When deploying new technology, you need to plan the user education side of it carefully. I like the approach of thinking about a timeline and tuning the learning requirements accordingly. Also of course, don't forget about the Desktop Deployment Planning Services which are part of your Software Assurance benefits. These are proving to be extremely useful to companies about to deploy Microsoft desktops. Experts will take you through the important decisions and help you put together your plans and use all the latest tools and techniques.
There are also a wealth of basic training and self-teach courses available (for example have a look at training for Excel 2007) on Office Online which are great for sharpening your skills during your lunch hour. All of these can be incorporated into your own end user training programmes. What other approaches have worked in your company?