Your channel partners will benefit from training if they have the right knowledge to work with your entire operation. Channel partners require training them on your brand, your offerings, regulations, and marketing tactics. The entire supply chain, from your vendors and distributors to wholesalers and retailers is important. They serve to ensure that your supply chain runs smoothly and that your company achieves its overall goals. To ensure their success, you should provide the best training possible.
However, since they are not your employees, it is not possible to train them internally and expect a direct impact on their performance or morale. There’s no doubt about conducting channel partner training. The question is how. Following these steps is the best way to develop a strategy that actually works.
Identify Channel Training Needs
Make sure you have a thorough understanding of what your partners need. Some partners, such as those who sell your products or run your franchises, may require marketing training. On the other hand, sales representatives and distribution centers need more practical training, such as how the different features of the product work.
You can help your channel partners succeed by determining what type of training they need. You can do this by conducting frequent surveys and identifying problems that frequently arise.
Align Company Goals with Your KPIs
Your Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) measure the performance of your business. It’s easy for some partners to lose track of these KPIs, due to a lack of training or lack of awareness.
Your channel partner training can be more effective if you align it with KPIs and make the program’s goals clear and understandable. For example, if your company’s goal is to boost client retention by 20%. It should be clearly communicated in customer retention training. A channel training program aligned with business KPIs will also give you insight into the profitability of your partner training strategy. Because it will allow you to measure how well they perform after training.
Choose the Right Platform
You can foster relationships among channel partners by holding workshops and face-to-face training sessions if you only have a few channel partners. Do you know what to do if you had many partners, and they are scattered around the globe?
Learning management systems (LMS) can play a crucial role in this process. You can deliver training and assessments by using LMSs online. It allows channel partners to participate in training and assessments according to their schedules, without having to travel or take time away from work. Some of the best LMS for this purpose are Blackboard, 360 learning, and many others. In choosing an LMS to train channel partners, you will have to consider factors such as your budget and the features that you require. Assess your needs and compare the options available with the prices.
Encourage Channel Partners
Setting clear expectations, offering rewards, and making partners feel appreciated is crucial for keeping them motivated. Your training goals can be broken down into milestones that team members will focus on during the program. As a result, you have an opportunity to motivate your team by recognizing their achievements, while improving the efficiency of training. For completing training sections, certificates and incentives may be offered, for instance, a certification for product knowledge. A leaderboard can be used to track these incentives to encourage friendly competition.
Incorporate your business’ values into your training to encourage training completion and improve performance. You need to explain to channel partners the values that the company holds for its employees, partners, and customers, as well as how channel partners represent the company’s culture.
Make Communication Easy
Communicate within your relationship with your partners, and train your channel partners to do the same. Make it easy for students to ask questions by using LMS features such as message boards in discussions and forums. Partners can also use these features to learn from and collaborate with others. Allowing users to submit questions directly to you will ensure that your training guides, sales information, product details, and other materials will be more accurately interpreted.
Training in Stages
At work, training is rarely an isolated event, and channel training should be no different. Make sure your partners proceed through your training in sequential order. As a result, you can keep them informed about the latest information, but without being too overwhelming. Providing your channel partners with different levels of training over time helps them stay engaged with your products and services, thus meeting your objectives.
Channel partner training makes your business’s representatives more successful, helps you build stronger relationships with them, as well as accelerates your business’s growth. Businesses of all sizes, in all industries, can benefit from this training, which is why it must be treated with care. So, create your partner training program with the best LMS and authoring tools to make sure you hit your target goals.