Anatomy of Corporate Training: Delivering Continuing Education Materials

The human body is made of many interdependent systems that work together to help you get through your day. Likewise, many components go into providing continuing education materials for your training courses.

  • Printed training materials are like the cardiovascular system—they are the lifeblood of your training program. Course books, learning guides, and exams are at the heart of helping students learn and retain information presented in your classes. Many studies support the idea that reading printed materials is a better match for deep, intensive reading of important information.
  • Formatting and design are part of the process and can be represented by the respiratory system. Good design and sleek formatting breathe life into content, making it easier to read, with a proper flow and clean appearance. Branding is consistent when colors, logos, and other elements are handled by the same organization that puts your materials on press.
  • Online training materials are akin to the nervous system. Do your students have a trigger finger, ready to tap on a smartphone or a computer mouse to receive your training content? If so, the content should be available there, where your learners spend so much of their time already.
  • Physical digital media (CDs, DVDs, and USBs) are the digestive system. Students can take home a USB, plug it in, and read content on a screen without having to be connected to the internet. This gives them an opportunity to really “take in” the information you presented in class, in their own time, on their own device.
  • Order fulfillment is best represented by the muscular system, and not just because it takes strength to move boxes of course books from our warehouse to your course site. Bringing your printed materials to your learners takes strength of a different kind, too—robust order systems that can handle the kind of customization each and every client deserves. Smaller muscle groups do important work, too, like kitting services, to make life easier for your instructors and your organization.
  • Inventory management, in closing, is the skeletal system. Imagine rows and rows of metal shelving, where printed training materials are managed, and you’ll understand why a skeleton is the image behind inventory. And make are no bones about it—managing your inventory in your office, while it becomes overrun with boxes stacked in every corner of floor space available, is a drag. When you trust a printing partner with the task you’ll lose the hassle without giving up control. With reports available to you 24/7, you’ll know the score.

Corporate training is a complex series of systems that, together, help your training program run smoothly and efficiently, just as the human body does. If the systems that help you deliver continuing education training content have been less than healthy lately, reach out to Omnipress for a consultation. We’ll have you back in tip-top shape in no time!

Dream Big to Achieve Your CE Training Goals!

Why do associations decide to handle print and fulfillment of continuing education training materials in-house? Is it simply a matter of cost, or is there something else that makes them reluctant to let go?

Some organizations are uncomfortable having another company manage this on their behalf. They want to maintain control so they can personally ensure that each learner receives the right materials, for the right course, in plenty of time.

While a commitment to the learner experience is to be commended, the hard truth is, there are only so many hours in the day. As much as we’d all like to personally handle every aspect of a program to ensure that expectations are met, there’s something to be said for delegating tasks that, while essential, don’t necessarily require your dedicated attention.

You may find that there is freedom in letting go of control so you can focus on other priorities. Many organizations find this to be especially true of print and fulfillment. Let an expert handle the intricacies of international shipping while you, for instance, grow your catalog of CE training courses and manage content creation and revisions.

Few association professionals are experienced with printing and shipping, and even fewer enjoy dealing with it. Have you ever met a colleague who pursued a career in continuing education to pack boxes? Neither have we.

Can you imagine how your workday might change if print and fulfillment no longer fell to you? Allow yourself to dream and you’ll find that you could regain enough time to achieve other, more mission-critical goals. Focus on what’s most important—providing your learners with valuable, useful skills to advance their careers—and you’ll find that handling print and fulfillment in-house was a barrier to achieving your true potential.

Ready to take the next step? Contact us to get the conversation started.

Experience’s Undervalued Benefit

When you look for someone to do business with, whether it’s a car mechanic, house painter, or doctor, experience is important, for many reasons.

First of all, you feel more comfortable trusting your car or your health to someone who knows what they’re doing. “Rookie mistakes” are common enough to earn their own term, and you’re not interested in being the training wheels while professionals get the hang of the work they do. Fair enough!

Another important aspect to choosing a partner based on experience is more subtle, but no less important. When you work with an experienced professional, the body of work that precedes your visit means that the service provider has probably encountered your challenges before.

As such, the doctor or mechanic or hair stylist is elevated from a person who can merely get the job done to someone who can serve in a consultative role in helping you move forward with your specific issue. The stylist knows how to get you through growing out your bangs. The doctor can give you tips to help you lower your blood pressure.

Omnipress has been working with associations for decades and our expertise carries over into print and fulfillment of continuing education training materials. We can also help organizations manage their print inventory and bring their CE training content online.

We know managing content changes can be difficult when it comes to CE training materials. A change in best practices or an important new regulation could cause your organization’s training materials to be outdated, literally overnight. We print on demand, charging only for the inventory your learners order. Working with us means that changing content doesn’t have to cost you. That also means that your office space isn’t overrun by outdated materials.

When some associations initially partner with us, they take the opportunity to update their CE training materials. Maybe your course books could use a facelift, too? (For an example, read the Vibration Institute case study.) Omnipress can help you with rebranding, as well as other cumbersome tasks that many organizations are happy to delegate, like international shipping and inventory management.

Bringing CE training content online is appealing to many organizations, but it can be difficult to know where to start. Omnipress offers event content online as well, and knows how important online access to materials has become to the average member/attendee/learner. To keep your organization relevant and tuned in to the needs of its membership, it makes sense to offer materials online. To make it easier on you, trust the Omnipress team to guide you through the process of bringing content online.

“Delivering knowledge” has been long been Omnipress’ mantra. We apply it to all that we do, whether your focus is events, training, or publications. If you are looking for help with your CE training materials, we are here to help.

To the Victor Go the Spoils!: Training Print & Fulfillment

Victors in wars for independence often claim a bounty—land, resources, and the like—for their side. What would you like to claim for your kingdom (i.e. your staff)? What if the best bounty you could bestow on them wasn’t land or riches, but a far scarcer resource in modern office life—time?

When we speak to organizations about their continuing education training materials, we find that most are using internal staff to process and fulfill orders, and sometimes also to print course books. Some of these staff members have experience and/or degrees in marketing. How would your association benefit if they spent that time on growing membership instead of packing boxes?

Let’s say just one staff member’s time is reallocated to membership activities. This person, Cathy, spent 10 hours a week on order fulfillment; now she can devote all of that time to building membership.

Cathy launches an email campaign to build awareness among industry leaders. She writes and implements a social media plan, gaining the organization dozens of fans and followers on LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook. Twice a week, she spends two hours calling former members to ask why they let their membership lapse and presenting a case for renewed commitment.

After just one month focusing on membership activities, Cathy has recruited 10 new members and renewed 8. New members pay $1,000 in dues; renewing members pay $750. Within the first week, when she recruited just four new members, she earned the association the additional income to pay for the entire year of print and fulfillment series from Omnipress.

The other 6 members recruited and 8 renewed? Icing on the cake. If Cathy continues at this pace, she’ll bring in $120,000 in dues from new members (10/month x 12 months/year) and $72,000 in renewal dues (8/month x 12 months/year). That’s almost $200,000 gained on account of the 10 extra hours/week Cathy can spend on membership. (Results and prices may vary.)

You don’t have to go into battle to reclaim staff time. Working with a partner vendor that can take the print and fulfillment of CE training materials off your plate is enough to make a major difference. To get started, read our story of two association professionals who made this change (whitepaper), listen to our Training and Development Talk podcast, or simply reach out to us!

To the victor go the spoils! Take what you need—productive time—and give it back to your staff. Use it on mission-critical work and all of your members will be winners.

3 Ways to Fulfill Orders, 1 Vendor Partner

Let’s say your association offers continuing education training. Your members sign up for instructor-led training and now they need printed coursebooks. Organizations can set up their process to fulfill the order in one of three ways:

  1. The learner places an order through the association using email, phone, or fax. An association staffer is given the order to fulfill in-house or send on to a fulfillment house for completion.
  2. An order is placed through the association’s online store. Association staff receives email confirmation of the order. If order fulfillment is handled in-house, the book is packed and shipped. If not, the email is forwarded to the fulfillment house.
  3. The learner orders a coursebook through the association’s online store, which sends order data directly to the fulfillment house. No action required on the part of the association! The process is completely automated.

Clearly, the third option makes the process easier for association staff, especially if the fulfillment house also manages inventory on its behalf. The automation eliminates any inconsistency of data by removing the threat of human error. The more people that “touch” the order data, the more likely it is to be unintentionally corrupted.

When the first or second way is used, the fulfillment house will likely charge an order processing fee. The third option involves more cost up-front, but the ongoing “dings” to the budget, on each and every order placed, are eliminated by the automation.

That said, the third option doesn’t make sense for every organization. If coursebooks are being ordered one at a time, and the association receives just a few orders each week, the first option might work out just fine. As volume grows, however, automation streamlines the process.

Whichever order procedure works best for your organization, Omnipress can be your partner for CE training print and fulfillment, helping you bring training materials to your learners. We can facilitate your process as you grow, too; your association may start with the first method and, after a period of growth, switch to a more efficient order process.

Listen to the April 15th episode of Training and Development Talk podcast, featuring Omnipress’ Dan Loomis and Tony Veroeven, for a discussion of this topic.

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