Rick is in-charge of training the staff of a multinational pharmaceutical company on software applications. Recently, his company implemented a new drug-modeling computer application, and he was asked to train its people on it. Rick ensured that an excellent training program was developed and delivered to the firm’s learners. However, the well-designed program did not yield the desired results. What has gone wrong? Why did even a good program fail to train people effectively on the software? Well, the reason for the failure – the program was delivered only in English.
Many companies have faced a similar problem. Often, organizations focus their energies on developing highly effective programs to impart good training on software. But, they fail to understand the importance of delivering these programs in the native languages of their non-English speaking staff. This results in poor learning because most software used by multi-national companies (MNCs) such as SAP are highly complex, and if the training program is delivered in English, then employees from non-Anglophone countries may face problems in comprehending the content.
Most firms use a blended learning approach to train their people on software applications. Classroom sessions are used to impart training on theoretical concepts while e-learning is used to help them master the use of the software. We will now look at a few online training elements that are widely used to provide software training which need to be translated.
These enable the learner to master the steps involved in the use of the product. Firstly, the steps involved in using the product are demonstrated to the learner. Then, he is given a chance to try the steps he has watched. He is guided with pop ups and hints at every stage prompting him about the next step in the process. Finally, the learner is all by himself and needs to apply the knowledge that he has acquired, remember the steps and do them on his own.
Your people can easily follow the steps presented in a simulation, if they are explained in their native language. Likewise, you need to see that the information displayed in the pop-ups is in the native language of the learners. This helps them better understand where they have gone wrong.
Job aids and end-user manuals
Several firms use micro-learning lessons to reinforce the learning in instructor-led training (ILT) sessions and as aids to provide just-in-time (JIT) support. These information nuggets are delivered on mobile devices and go a long way in enhancing performance of workforce.
It is essential to render the content delivered through job-aids in the native languages of your people. They can comprehend the content quickly, without any issues. This helps the staff members perform effectively.
It is quite common to deliver end-user manuals in the form of eBooks and other electronic formats. It is advisable to translate these ‘e-documents’ to facilitate efficient use of the software. Also, it is better to see that the GUI of the software is available in the native languages of your staff. Many software vendors make the GUI of their products available in multiple languages.
Imparting software training in the native languages of your people helps improve efficiencies in a big way. Apart from holding classroom sessions in these languages, you need to translate the content of simulations and job-aids. It is a good practice to render end-user manuals and the GUI of software applications in the native languages of your staff. Hope you find this post interesting. Do share your views.