Ongoing Training Needs for Microsoft Dynamics


Every new business system project has a budget line for training. No one ever buys a sophisticated piece of software like Dynamics and says ‘you know what – we’ll just figure it out.’ There is a budget and a number of training days are done before the system goes in and often, those people go back and do a “train-the-trainer” exercise for the others.

If this is the first time they’ve used Dynamics, and especially if no comparable system was in place before, then the amount of change involved means that just getting the basics is all users manage with that first pass. No criticism is intended of the people involved, even the brightest people can only take on so much new information. You need the system to become instinctive (with the old system they didn’t have to think, they just did) and that takes time and practise.

What very few companies do however is any follow-up advanced classes to take those staff to another level and get the most from the company’s substantial investment. Once it goes quiet, and processes just happen, it’s all considered OK and good enough. That’s like saying to children once they’ve done their first maths lessons and can complete basic addition and subtraction they can stop learning.

Often I visit companies that have used Dynamics for years and cannot believe how the people are actually muddling through because of lack of knowledge. I remember visiting a company in Hull that was doing 13 separate things many times a day; when I leaned over an employees shoulder at the company and pushed the F7 key, pointing out on the statistics page the number she was calculating – she nearly hit me!

I’m also constantly amazed when new people join an organisation and are expected to pick up from colleagues or sometime even the person who’s leaving. Talk about the blind leading the blind! By the time that’s happened a few times the rumours and whisper effect is really taking hold as you see some absolutely mad processes as a result. Fair play to those people – they are doing what they can to get the job done and keep the customer or colleague happy. It’s not their fault.

You wouldn’t buy an expensive CNC machine or a big specialist lorry and trust it to someone who had never seen one before let along been properly trained. Your Dynamics system is one of the most critical ‘machines’ in your business – don’t waste it by cutting corners on the training. There is a fair chance that a rookie will mess up the data while they learn by trial and error and it will take a very long time to get it back right – that’s going to cost you a lot more than a few hours tuition for them.