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How Modern Distributors Can Ensure A Highly-Trained And Capable Workforce

Every brand owner dreams of channel excellence, but such performance is not easy to achieve.

Changing relationships, evolving customer expectations, and widening skills gaps can all bring down channel efficiency. To overcome these challenges, distributors need to constantly work towards training and upskilling their workforce.

Excellence comes only with continuous learning, coaching, and feedback, which is why it is important for channel actors to lean on modern workforce training solutions.

The importance of training and upskilling for distributors

Distributors play a crucial role in the growth of any consumer product business, yet they are found to be constantly fighting to win the attention of customers and business partners. The increase in competition makes it extremely hard to establish long-lasting partnerships with stakeholders. The only way distributors can outdo their competitors is through enhanced performance. Sell more to be valued more, is the mantra!

And educating and training the workforce on the latest products and upgrades and equipping them with all the product information and knowledge is critical to driving sales and upsell.

Customers now have the luxury of engaging with different brands through a variety of traditional and modern channels. Establishing effective distributor training programs can allow the workforce to be in sync with market trends, customer needs, and product updates. That will help them win over customers by delivering unmatched experiences.

Training the workforce using advanced training tools and technologies can help in upskilling their capabilities. As a result, distributors can keep the workforce aligned with business goals, reward positive behaviour, and improve interactions with customers.

Key challenges

Distributors do understand the importance of training and upskilling their workforce to improve business outcomes. But curating course modules and taking decisions about product and sales training delivery, measurement and retention isn’t always simple. Listed below are the most challenging areas for distributors in training their workforce:

  • Uncovering training needs and ensuring they’re in line with customer requirements
  • Providing training to a workforce that’s geographically dispersed and constantly on the move
  • Building course material that addresses the unique needs of different workers with different skillsets
  • Creating a culture of continuous learning that doesn’t stop at attending a minimum number of courses a year
  • Empowering the workforce to apply concepts and techniques learnt via training to the sales process
  • Educating and engaging the workforce on different products, features, and enhancements and differentiating them from competitors
  • Updating and regulating the training process to keep pace with the changing nature of products and the distribution environment

How solutions like Lean On can deliver clarity and impact

Modern workforce training solutions that utilize advanced technology and are easy to use are now indispensable across the distribution network. A solution like Lean On that uses mobile technologies and analytical games can act as the perfect teaching tool to make learning easy and engaging for distributors and their workforce.

Providing high-quality content via continuous industry collaboration,  such solutions can enable teams to learn new skills and apply them in their day-to-day jobs, while constantly honing their competencies. Here are 5 features of an advanced workforce training solution that can deliver clarity and impact for distributors:

  1. Gamification: Workforce training solutions that offer gamification capabilities can deliver amazing results in the distribution landscape. By applying gaming concepts to learning or training sessions, they make training extremely engaging – moving far away from traditional classroom-based or textual learning. Right from delivering “win” schedules to offering badges, gamification aids in creating an interactive and rewarding environment. That allows distributors’ employees to not just learn new concepts but also retain, apply, and transfer knowledge. At the same time, through gamification, distributors can also provide instant feedback to users, allowing them to quickly acquire new skills while also advancing to the next level.
  2. Built-in analytics: Workforce training solutions with built-in analytics can allow distributors to measure training effectiveness and gauge the level of knowledge acquisition and retention. By providing supervisors and managers with insights on the performance of salespeople in relation to their objectives, distributors can track efficiency and take steps to ensure the workforce is on track with weekly goals and that mistakes are fixed right away. Analysis also helps in ensuring that the workforce keeps up with pre-defined KPIs and delivers the level of productivity needed to drive the business forward.
  3. High-quality digital courses: Offering the workforce high-quality digital courses can help them more easily access and acquire knowledge about selling techniques, tips, and best practices as well as uncover the tasks they should focus on for repeat sales. Since digital courses can be accessed from anywhere, at any time, and using any device, it does not compel the workforce to attend training modules from a place or at a pace that’s not comfortable. Digital courses that offer immersive learning experiences mean the workforce can learn, apply, and hone their competencies far more efficiently.
  4. Interactive quiz sessions: Making the distribution workforce participate in interactive quiz sessions is a great way to engage and upskill them. Not only are quizzes fun, but they can also help in tracking and evaluating learning progress and outcomes. Comprising different levels, this type of learning can ensure learners have successfully digested the information, before moving on to the next section. At the same time, interactive quizzes can help distributors grab the attention of learners while motivating them to stay focused.
  5. Self-assessment: Training platforms that offer the option of self-assessment play a pivotal role in making learners feel more engaged. Regular use of self-assessment can not only lead to deeper learning and better performance; it can also help them in reflecting on what they’ve learned. By gaining greater insights into their skill levels, they can feel more confident about their abilities while also setting realistic future goals for improvement. At the same time, they can enhance capacity building, make corrections quickly, and select training programs that are best suited to their needs.

If you want to take your business to the next level, you need to enhance the performance of your workforce. That’s how you can scale seamlessly over time and achieve optimum profitability – smoothly and efficiently. A modern, tech-driven workforce training solution can play a great role in ensuring a highly-trained and capable workforce. Solutions like the iSteer Lean On can help businesses in responding to customers’ demands of ‘being available instantly as, when and where they need’, keep the business updated, and influence future success.