Skip to main content

Estimating the Cost of Dynamics CRM Implementations: Part 6 -- Training

No software implementation is successful without adoption, and most enterprise solutions require training in order to be adopted.    Training is often shortchanged in Dynamics CRM and xRM implementations. 

You should include training in your project plan, and start work on training materials as soon as use cases are created for the solution.     Analysis, development, testing, and training all should be tightly connected so you end up training to the requirements and usage scenarios you have identified.

Several options are available for training on CRM, including:
  1. Custom hands-on classroom training in a lab environment, tailored to your specific implementation. This is the most intensive and expensive option, but is appropriate in many cases, especially for critical and complex solutions.
  2. Standard CRM classroom training.  Microsoft authorizes training centers around the world to deliver the standard approved training for its products. 
  3. Video training.  The content may be similar to classroom training and even allow exercises and interaction.   One advantage is that it can be done at any time, and the cost does not increase based on the number of users or times that the training is used.
  4. Commercial training materials.  Microsoft and third parties publish training materials such as books and videos which are a great way to learn Dynamics CRM.
  5. Train-the-trainer. If you hire a professional services firm to develop your solution, you may want to have them train your training and support staff. Many organizations have professional trainers on a fulltime or part-time basis.
  6. Hybrid training.  A combination of these training approaches may be best for your organization.
  7. Free training videos.  Microsoft and its partners have published hundreds of free training videos on Dynamics CRM that are available on YouTube and microsoft.com. These are great for getting a quick response to a specific "how do I" question.
In terms of cost, classroom training at a training center is several hundred dollars per person per day (often about $500).  In person custom training is sometimes charged based on the number of students or at a flat rate of $2,000-3,000 per day including materials.    Online training materials and training subscriptions are often less than $100 per person. 

Remember that the generic training materials are less expensive, but not tailored to your solution or implementation.    In general, these materials are good for IT professional rather than end users. 

A good place to start for online resources is http://crm.dynamics.com/en-us/support-overview

You need to understand your users in order to choose the correct training approach.    Is traditional classroom training effective?   How much time can users spend in training with their other job responsibilities?   Will they be overloaded with information in a multi-day training session?

In addition to end user training, you will want to provide training for system administrators and other IT professionals.   You may also want to train developers for maintenance tasks and enhancements to the system.   You may need to customize some materials so they related to your particular implementation, but advanced admin training materials are readily available.

Generic product training is most appropriate for IT staff.   End users are usually better off with training geared toward their particular implementation, including forms, reports, and workflows that are unique to their organization.

Don't wait until the end of your implementation to begin training.  User acceptance testing is a great time for initial training of a subset of users.     An incremental rollout or a pilot is also a great chance to refine your training approach before it is too late.

Refresher training is a good item to include in your budget.   It can help renew enthusiasm for the system and improve user satisfaction. 


Popular posts from this blog

Key Concepts for Microsoft Dynamics 365: Tenant, Instance, App and Solution

To understand Microsoft Dynamics 365 (formerly Dynamics CRM), you need to learn some new terms and concepts that may be a bit different from what you know from databases and solutions that are hosted on premises. This post introduces some of the key terms and how these concepts are important for planning your implementation. While Dynamics 365 is available on premises, it is most commonly deployed on the Microsoft cloud.  This blog post discusses only cloud implementations. Microsoft has multiple clouds such as commercial and government community clouds. We start with a Microsoft tenant .  A tenant is the account you create in the Microsoft Online Services environment (such as Office 365) when you sign up for a subscription. A tenant contains uniquely identified domains, users, security groups, and subscriptions.  Your tenant has a domain name of .onmicrosoft.com such as acme.onmicrosoft.com.  User accounts belong to a tenant, and subscriptions are assigned to user accoun

Understanding Dynamics 365 and Office 365 Admin Roles

Managing Dynamics 365 instances If you run Microsoft Dynamics 365 (formerly Dynamics CRM) in the Microsoft cloud, you need to understand how your Dynamics instances relate to Office 365 and choose which of your administrators receives which roles and permissions to manage Dynamics 365. In on premises deployments, your network administrator would create and delete user accounts.  The Dynamics 365 admin would then assign permissions to users in Dynamics 365. This post explains three administrator roles: Office 365 Global Administrator Dynamics 365 System Administrator Dynamics 365 Service Administrator You may think that the Dynamics 365 system administrator would have power to do all the actions needed to manage Dynamics 365, but this is not the case. What's different in Microsoft cloud deployments is that licenses and user accounts are managed in Office 365 by an Office 365 Global Administrator.  This role is analogous to a network administrator for an on premises

Replacing Microsoft InfoPath with Power Apps

Source:  https://powerapps.microsoft.com/en-us/infopath/ Microsoft has offered a number of forms automation products over the years, and the most long running was InfoPath which was released as part of Office 2003.  InfoPath is a powerful and flexible product that stores user data in XML while offering form features such as rules, data validation, scripting, and integration with SharePoint.  The popularity of SharePoint resulted in many organizations standardizing on InfoPath for forms, especially internal forms which are hosted on an intranet such as employee reviews, leave and payment requests, and human resources forms. Microsoft has discontinued InfoPath, with mainstream support ending July 13th, 2021, and extended support ending July 14th, 2026. Microsoft has named Power Apps as the successor to InfoPath .  Power Apps has much in common with InfoPath.  Both products include integration with SharePoint.  Both are geared toward the citizen developer and do not require advan