Course Admin Doesn’t Have to Be a Drag (But Here’s 8 Reasons Why It Is)


How do you feel about the amount of admin you do? Proper administration is critical to the success of any training organisation and learning department. Tracking who has been trained, when re-certification is due and issuing certificates can become an admin nightmare. All that repetitive, routine manual input can be incredibly time-consuming, and not always the best use of your time. So, what can you do about it?

8 reasons why admin is a drag

Woman stressed at desk

It happens to every professional. We get bogged down in minutiae of our work, and even though we excel at time management, time just slips away from us (OK, more like runs away very, very quickly). You know that your training admin is starting to drag you down when…

  • You can't easily find the information you need
  • Compliance tracking has become almost impossible
  • You’re flitting between too many systems to track training and resources – it’s slowing you down, no matter how efficient you are
  • You’re performing a hundred tasks at once – but not finishing all of them to a high standard
  • Your role has morphed into dealing with duplicated data – so you spend too much time correcting inaccuracies and deleting unnecessary information
  • You can’t give your full attention to your role, your training, and your organisation

1. Never-ending data entry

It’s one of the the main duties of any learning department – artfully placing data onto your company’s system. But it never seems to end, does it? No sooner have you cleared one lot then another round of info is crying out for attention. Let’s be honest, it’s not the most interesting part of the job. Especially when…

2. You’re dealing with stubborn spreadsheets – ‘nuff said

Why won’t those rows and columns behave themselves? Why won’t they do what you want them to? Why are spreadsheets so counter-intuitive? Sometimes it feels like, just by using spreadsheets, you’d turning a five-minute job into an hour-long epic. So, if you’ve ever raged at Excel, then congratulations, you’re not alone.  And in between that, you’re…

3. Amending and editing inaccurate info (that you didn’t input in the first place)

Accurate information is critical to the smooth running of any day-to-day business. Even more so with the introduction of GDPR, demanding your delegates’ data is up-to-date. But mistakes do happen – and even when it’s not your fault, it’s usually it’s up to you to go through the system and correct all those problems. It’s not like you’ve got any other work to crack on with, right?

And it’s even more difficult when…

4. It’s easier to find the Holy Grail than it is trying to find a delegate’s information across all those different systems

Bespoke systems for this; CRM for that; LMS for the other – and don’t forget to place some of your delegates’ data inside a Master Spreadsheet (that’s Master Spreadsheet Current 2018 v1.00565657, by the way, not Master Spreadsheet 2018 v1.00565656). it’s difficult enough using so many systems to duplicate the same old information over and over again, but you need the talents of a bloodhound to hunt down every scrap of data you hold on a delegate…

Head full of disparate systems

Does this look familiar?

5. You’re running so many programs simultaneously that your computer sounds like it’s running on steam (and hope. So much hope)

As if it wasn’t bad enough that you can spend a lifetime switching between stacked systems, the more you do it, the less your computer likes it. So, by now, you’re working on a whirring, clunking mess of electrics that struggles to even open Word, let alone all the other programs – which means you end up wasting time watching egg timers and loading screens instead of cracking on with the job. If only you could manage your training using just one program (and stop having to call the IT team every few days)!

6. Procedures and processes that haven’t changed in 20 years

There are some procedures that have been hanging around your company for so long that even the MD doesn’t know why you’re still doing them. Sure, once upon a time there was a very good reason for filing three copies of every course booking – but that was back when telephone orders were the chief way to process bookings.

Now, all those processes are just corporate habit (and probably a waste of your precious time), when really, detailed, data-driven business insights would better help you refine your procedures.

7. The headache caused by double bookings

You don’t know how it happened, but somehow, you’ve ended up with two courses planned at a single venue. Or maybe you need one of your trainers to literally break the laws of physics in order to appear in two places at once. Whatever the problem, double bookings can be a nightmare to deal with, from rescheduling those important courses to dealing with unhappy delegates to taking steps to ensure it never happens again.

8. 5 o’clock rolls around and you’ve still got tons to do

The real problem with admin is just how long it can all take, right? But it doesn’t matter how many items are on your to-do list, and how many emails you clear away, you’ll still get asked to complete an urgent task. Then another. And another.

Whether it’s processing course bookings or sending out compliant-critical course reminders, it’s time to add another few hundred administrative jobs to that to-do list for this week… It’s enough to drive you to distraction. You end up rushing jobs and not giving them the full attention they deserve.

What is the answer to your admin headache?

Running a learning department takes time; running it effectively takes even more time. And the only way to really focus on making your company a success is automation.

  • Want to lower operational costs? Automate.
  • Want to remove manual processes? Automate.
  • Want to eliminate data duplication and human error? Automate.
  • Want to add additional value to your proposition? Automate.
  • Want to become more efficient as a business? You guessed it, automate.

Download our free guide to identify the areas of your role that you can automate to eliminate those admin heavy processes.

10 ways to automate whitepaper

Related articles include:

The 4 Biggest Challenges Faced By Training Companies

Interesting Results From Our Training Industry Survey!

What All Learning And Training Professionals Should Know