Outsourced product training for customers
Outsourcing has become increasingly more common in a variety of business areas. Companies abound these days to do training for other companies – from accounting and business training to sensitivity and counseling training. However there is one area that has been almost overlooked until now: Although there are many companies that send out trainers to teach their customers on the proper use and care of the company’s own products, there is a noticeable lack of outsourcing companies that provide this service for the manufacturing companies. The need for such outsourcing companies has obviously been slight to non-existent, until now.
With company budgets getting tighter and world travel getting both more complicated and more dangerous the need for small to medium-sized companies to outsource such training is increasing. Being able to turn to another company that is used to the ins and outs of international travel and whose trainers understand the cultural, security, and logistic problems of the country in question can relieve several concerns that the company’s management would have to address. Concerns other than the ones listed above include having training employees on hand full-time, insurance concerns, losing the productivity of those employees while they are gone, and having to make sure that the target country has been researched for everything from visa application to whether or not it is monsoon season.
For a company that may need hands-on trainers anywhere from once every few years to twice a month the benefits of outsourcing can allow them to concentrate on what they do best – instead of their resources being diverted to do something that they may not be familiar with or just don’t want to bother with. With the political turmoil in some regions of the globe they may even find that their employees are reticent to get shipped off to either unknown regions or to regions that are all too well known from recent news reports.
These world conditions have become fertile ground for a new type of representative: the intrepid business representative for hire. These are people who know how to deal with everything from the effects of the local water and food to personal security and how not to offend the customer in his customs. They must enjoy other cultures and respect their ways in order to properly represent the manufacturing company to customers in remote areas of the world. Added to this they must be patient and able to get across the information and ideas that the customer needs. The trainer needs to be familiar with the product to the extent that, if something does go wrong he or she can efficiently handle the problem and secure future sales. Let’s face it: things will sometimes go wrong. This means that the trainer may need expertise in areas as diverse as how to use software, fix a mechanical malfunction, or being able to explain a misunderstanding about the use and maintenance of the device. There is nothing like problem solving right there and then. On-site hands-on training is sometimes a must, and usually the best way for the customer get the most out of the product he or she has purchased.
That means customer satisfaction – which of course translates into more sales.
– John Spinuzzi, Remote World Training