Acquisitions are critical to growth, and the overall success of an acquisition often hinges on the employees at the heart of the business. Integrating newly acquired businesses into one larger consolidated company is a complex yet essential process for private equity firms and their portfolio companies. Having centralized and scalable training for these acquired service-based businesses ensures all employees have the skills and confidence they need to thrive.
Centralized training presents an opportunity to ensure employee performance, assimilate the workforce into the new company, and clarify the organizational structure, job expectations and advancement opportunities. It standardizes operations and provides a single repository so your team can manage training from one place.
Here are five proven strategies for using centralized training to boost performance across your growing portfolio.
Tailoring Training Content
A one-size-fits-all approach to training isn’t the most efficient use of anyone’s time, so it is essential to know what your employees know and what they need to learn. Assessing branch- or employee-specific training needs allows you to customize training to bridge skill and knowledge gaps without repeating things your labor force already knows. An assessment tool is the most effective way to gain objective insights into employees’ training needs, establish a custom learning path and monitor progress.
Customized training saves time and engages learners with a dynamic learning experience that can be adjusted to meet individual learning styles. More importantly, students can advance at their own rate, allowing them to get extra help when needed or move on to more complex material.
Interplay Learning offers customized Learning Paths—curated roadmaps created to help team members learn the right skills in the right order based on their assessments. The Learning Paths present learners with the most relevant courses, in the correct order, to provide the fastest and most complete journey to their training goals.
As part of the learning process, workers participate in realistic, hands-on simulations representing practical, real-world scenarios, which lets them troubleshoot on lifelike equipment in a no-risk environment. Studies have shown that simulations encourage active learning, and learners who engage in simulations retain information better.
Developing Clear Communication Strategies
Clear communication is essential to any training program, but even more so when acquiring and merging smaller service-based businesses into a larger, consolidated company. Employees from different organizations may have different working methods, expectations and experiences, making effective communication even more critical.
Overseeing training for multiple locations can become more challenging as businesses grow, but centralizing training and establishing clear communication channels can help companies streamline training and standardize operations.
With Interplay, you can combine your existing content with our technical content or integrate our content into your learning management system, so it is all together in one place and easy for each branch to access.
Virtual reality and simulation training can drive performance across each branch, but it only works if your employees are engaged. Learners will check out quickly if they get bored or don’t understand why they are doing it. Different employees likely value different rewards.
Performance-based recognition, such as advancement and certification, will motivate some workers. You can outline clear ramp and onboard paths, promotion and raise paths, and certification paths to show them how to advance. Highlighting their career progression through training achievements can provide added recognition for them while also inspiring others.
Some employees are looking for more instant rewards and recognition, and gamification can create a more engaging experience for them.
Monitoring and Feedback Loops
Feedback is an integral part of an effective training program. You need to know how employees are doing so you can provide direction and coaching and employees need to be able to share consistent feedback. As part of the Interplay Learning system, there are robust tracking systems so trainers can easily identify completed training, attempts, and scores, which can be broken down per person, region or branch for more customized learning.
You can make training content better and more effective by adapting training content based on analyzed data and facts. When employee performance improves, you get a return on your investment faster.
Empowering Trainers and Service Managers
Trainers and service managers need to feel supported in order to fulfill their training expectations at scale. With Interplay, they can complement the training they already have in place by flipping the classroom and assigning pre-training. Your trainers and service managers can use Interplay training to cover fundamental skills and equipment foundations before classroom learning–ensuring everyone has the same foundational knowledge and optimizing in-person learning time.
These roles can also tap into Interplay’s assessment tools in order to gauge the technical acumen of their employees and track their learning progress. Since customization is so important for these roles, understanding the strengths and weaknesses of their team will allow them to take a more tailored approach to training, maximizing productivity and focusing on what truly matters .
If you communicate early on how digital training like Interplay enhances the systems your trainers and service managers already have in place, they will be more likely to adopt.
Ensuring Success With Interplay Learning
Technicians are essential to the performance of service-based businesses, and centralized, scalable training ensures they have the knowledge, skills and confidence to perform. Their performance is crucial when your company is growing through acquisitions.
As part of the Interplay Learning platform, you can easily assess skills, review employee metrics, and empower everyone to learn. Interplay provides enhanced training opportunities that offer immersive, real-world experiences to engage learners so they learn faster and get the most out of their training.
Drawing on Our Expertise
Acquisition success is enhanced when training is consistent, scalable, and aligned to your growth goals. Interplay Learning does the heavy lifting, providing you with the resources your business needs to develop a strong performing team of technicians across all of your locations. Our team can work with you to establish practical use cases that solve real problems at each stage of the training journey to set up your program, team and company for success.
Interplay Learning’s immersive online and VR training platform for HVAC, plumbing, electrical, and more, includes expert-led video courses, hands-on 3D simulations, skills assessments and custom learning paths to upskill advanced technicians and help new technicians be job-ready in weeks, not years.