Serious procurement training:
If you are considering E-learning as part of your training for your procurement team there are several options available to you:
1. Buying a library of courses and making them available to your target audience.
2. A Buyer Development Plan, where you motivate your learner’s to follow a learning path, based on desired competence per role (or even on an individual level)
3. A mix of the above.
Putting a library at the disposal of your learner’s (option 1) shifts the responsibility for learning from the manager to the learner. As a manager, you would actually rely on the self-discipline of your learners to follow the courses. Experience suggest that in such a situation, most of your team will not complete the courses. The time and motivation are lacking. But for some reason, this is the “service” that has been promoted by most vendors. Given the poor success of E-learning implementation in corporations. It is our view this will change quickly.
If learning is to be taken seriously, we believe that you will have to create a formal learning framework. This can be done by creating a number of learning plans for a buyer, senior buyer, induction training plan etc … based on the desired competences; which you will need to manage and monitor. Setting up your own Academy is the ultimate practice which demonstrates your commitment to developing your procurement teams capability.
However, simply up-skilling your team is only half the battle. The saying “there is nothing worse than sending a changed person back into an unchanged organization” is very true. If the organization does not allow them to put their new found skills into practice – people will quickly revert back to old ways of doing things, become demotivate and worse of all leave the organization to practice their skills where they are welcomed better.
So if you are serious about your procurement teams training – you should also address the organizational barriers preventing them from practicing their skill set. This remains a challenge for most CPOs today.