Training several distributors across different geographical regions is by no means an easy task. With the help of classroom training it is not easy to train your extensive dealer network. It is a tedious task involving lot of logistics and consumes much money and time. E-learning gives you the advantage of training with less time and money. The major reason for hesitation that companies have in implementing eLearning is that they might lose the human touch, i.e. the human relationships with dealers. In such situations, blended approach is an effective solution that combines both the methods. Here is the success story of how “TOSHIBA” implemented blended learning fruitfully and has since reaped its benefits.
Success Story of Toshiba’s Effective Dealer Training Realized through Blended Learning:
Toshiba telecommunication is a well-known brand serving small and large business clients and regional branches of big firms. Toshiba has 350 dealers in the United States and 3500 subsidiaries.
Like any company of its size and spread, Toshiba also faced problems with classroom training which included exorbitant costs, lack of time and need for coordinating logistics such as transportation and accommodation. They considered eLearning for some of their training since the other parts of the training still required classroom sessions. Therefore, Toshiba offered the blended approach. They started the “CEM” approach i.e. the Classroom, ELearning, and MLearning approach to training. They felt that blended learning would be a good medium to train, with a lot of benefits. Let’s look at some of these.
- ELearning was considered as Easy learning since dealers didn’t need to do anything except just log in with their username and password on to the computer, click the URL and access the course in their own time.
- Content is retained for a longer period. Unlike in classroom sessions, if the learners had any difficulty they could go back to the course and revisit the content for better comprehension.
- Time allotted for training sessions was decreased. It was reduced from seven classroom hours to three bite sized modules with a total time of 45 minutes. This was more appealing to the learners. The time saved could be used for business advancement such as prospecting and selling.
The Toshiba management says eLearning made their dealers’ life easier and saved many resources. Thanks to the blended approach they managed to retain the human touch and their relationships with their dealers through classroom sessions.
Dealer should have product knowledge while selling the product and technical knowledge to maintain the equipment. It’s the responsibility of training and supply chain managers to make sure that their distributors are up to the mark. If not, they should be trained on it. Only then, will they ensure regular sales revenue. Training your dealers helps you in improving your business effectiveness. Blended learning gives you the combined advantage of classroom and eLearning for training your dealers.