Institute offers customized software training for businesses

Seeing a continuing need for customized software training in the business community, SUNY Oswego’s Institute for Professional and Organizational Development offers training for both individuals and groups at a time and location convenient to clients. 

Ann Comerford, co-owner of J.R. Comerford and Son Inc., an Oswego-based HVAC company, took advantage of the customized training. “One of the institute’s instructors, John (Fuller), came to my office and saved me long, frustrating hours of trying to figure out how to transfer our manual accounting records for our medium-sized businesses to QuickBooks,” she said.

While admitting that the process to convert the manual records seemed “overwhelming” at first, Comerford said it ultimately saved time and money. “Not only did John help me learn QuickBooks, but because he has an in-depth knowledge of accounting, he coached me on accounting processes as well,” she said. “I can’t say enough of what a tremendous help John was and continues to be.”

Linda McKinstry, the Town of Schroeppel’s community service supervisor, appreciated her instructor’s knowledge and flexibility.

“She did an extensive assessment of my staff’s work functions in relationship to our software training needs,” McKinstry said of her instructor, Donna Yager. “We then worked out a training schedule that didn’t interfere with our busy season. Donna helped us to fill the gap between what we already knew and what we needed to learn at a time that was convenient to us.”

After working with numerous businesses in the community, Yager found that “many people have learned how to use software programs on their own, with the help of a co-worker, or while in school. At times, what they don’t know gets in their way of becoming efficient with the program and using it to its potential.”

As a result, “it can be very frustrating to employees to try to figure out specific functions in order to produce reports, analyze data, create visually appealing presentations, and other tasks,” Yager said.  “What I am able to do is to fine tune their skills. It’s very rewarding to me to see the ‘light go on’ and a client get excited about how much easier their job will be because of the individualized instruction.”

During a minimum of three to four hours, a software instructor can assist one individual or several by answering questions, identifying shortcuts and demonstrating efficient methods to tap into all the features of any Microsoft product or industry-specific software program in a customized, hands-on training session. Program organizers predict individuals will immediately increase their confidence, efficiency and job performance by using actual work-related data and assignments.

The SUNY Oswego Institute for Professional and Organizational Development is dedicated to partnering with business, government and non-profit organizations to develop and deliver customized employee training based on current and future business needs. Its mission, “Your Success Is Our Business,” focuses on bottom-line results.

For more information on how to secure the assistance of a software expert, call 312-6430 or visit

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(Posted: Jan 18, 2006)