Brand new technologies abound but people skilled in how to use them tend to be scarce at first.
It’s a lesson not lost on vendors like SAP, which has just rolled out its Early Knowledge Transfer program, designed to offer customers and partners immediate access to the skills they need for quick ramp-up of the software giant’s newest solutions. Built on the SAP Learning Hub, based on SuccessFactors technology, Early Knowledge Transfer reflects SAP’s overall commitment to faster innovation in the cloud era.
“Customers, partners and even our own people have to keep up with the knowledge they need to use all these new technologies successfully, whether it’s a new innovation or new release of an existing solution,” said Stefan Haenisch, Senior Vice President of Knowledge Transfer & Education at SAP. “We decided to modernize how we enable innovation, and to remove any barriers to adopting the latest, greatest SAP technologies.”
Learner collaboration and hands-on practice
Early Knowledge Transfer is an evolution of SAP’s longstanding Ramp-Up Knowledge Transfer program, providing a next generation learning approach that offers easy access to learning content, real-time collaboration and hands-on practice. Using learning rooms based on SAP Jam, customers, partners and SAP experts can engage in an ongoing dialogue with each other. These discussion forums allow participants to ask questions, post comments, consider suggestions and share best practices. Many Early Knowledge Transfer programs feature access to live software systems as well as simulations, helping customers and partners quickly understand new technologies and their best applications.
“Seeing the technology in action the way a customer or partner would apply it in a real situation is the fastest way to learn,” said Haenisch. “We’ve found that a dynamic, highly interactive online education model combining theory through video lectures, e-books, quizzes, checklists and other learning tools plus hands-on examples of the technology in real world settings is the most elegant and effective approach.”
Using the easily searchable platform, participants can keep track of assignments, including completed courses and new offerings aligned to individual and team learning plans.
Try before you buy
All the content in the Early Knowledge Transfer program is included as part of the SAP Learning Hub, currently totaling over 100,000 subscribers. In addition, SAP is offering free introductory access to the program and the Learning Hub for early adopters participating in the SAP Ramp-up and General Availability Care programs. Customers can extend complimentary access for up to five users for up to nine months, while partners can receive up to three months free.
A more effective learning model
Haenisch is upbeat about how the Early Knowledge Transfer program will bring education up to the same speed as innovation.
“We want as many SAP customers and partner as possible to become active members of the SAP Learning Hub. Our goal is to reach 300,000 subscribers by the end of this year,” he said. “With that many subscribers, anytime a new product is released, our complete community of people will have full, immediate access to all the innovation and knowledge they require to get started and generate faster business outcomes.”
Learning evolves with technology innovations
Mindful of changing educational demands across the technology sector, Haenisch says plans are already underway to more tightly couple the Early Knowledge Transfer program with standard SAP Training & Education offerings. “We want to provide customers and partners with the best of both worlds: intensive hands-on information they can apply immediately for faster value, plus ongoing education over time.”
In many ways, the Early Knowledge Transfer program reflects a learning approach aligned to the cloud-based world. Deployed effectively, cloud-based computing delivers faster time to value, along with greater efficiencies and consistency. It only makes sense to shift the learning gears behind that technology, and in doing so power an accelerated revenue-generation machine.
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