Trained 2,500 nurses on SAP


Deploy SAP as the main nursing application
Train 2,500 nurses to use the new systems
Deliver patient services as normal


Assima Cloning and Assistant Suite
Technical support from Assima
Mix of eLearning and classroom training


Training time and costs reduced by 50%
Interactive exercises that mirror the live app
Option for in-app support via Assima AI-Powered Digital Assistant

We needed to train 2,500 nursing staff to start working with the new SAP systems before going live to ensure a seamless patient experience throughout the migration.

Leerhuis Hans van Herwaarden
Zuyderland MC Manager


Innovation can be challenging for health care providers. On one hand, the latest technology advancements are required to increase efficiency and deliver the best patient care. On the other, patient-facing staff must be available 24/7, which leaves little or no time to either deploy new systems or to train staff to use them. This was the situation for Zuyderland MC in Heerlen in the Netherlands.
The organization, which operates four hospitals, wanted to deploy SAP as its main nursing app, with no disruptions to patient-facing services. “We couldn’t afford any disruption or downtime during the SAP deployment,” noted Zuyderland MC Manager, Leerhuis Hans van Herwaarden. “Equally importantly, we needed to train 2,500 nursing staff to start working with the new SAP systems before going live to ensure a seamless patient experience throughout the migration.”

Zuyderland MC calculated that nurses would need up to seven days of classroom training before using SAP in live situations – time that would be much better spent with patients. “The cost of putting nurses out of action for seven days was much too high – both for the hospital and for our patients,” said Hans van Herwaarden. “What we needed was a different way to train nurses that were less expensive and disruptive.”


After evaluating different training technologies and approaches, Zuyderland MC chose Assima Train to support its mission critical SAP training program for nurses. “Assima Train was unique among the training systems we looked at,” noted Hans van Herwaarden. “Instead of using expensive, standalone training clients and classroom-only training, it creates clones of the live application that can be used online or in classes as the foundation for interactive online training.” Based on their extensive knowledge of patient care processes, a team of Zuyderland MC nurses built approximately 300 Assima training exercises to prepare staff in advance of the SAP deployment. Technical consulting was provided by an on-site Assima consultant, who helped the nurses clone the live app and develop the required training materials. The training was created in a number of media outputs to suit the specific needs of different employee types and demographics. “Some of our nurses respond better to printed training materials, while others want to watch videos or take interactive classes online,” said Hans van Herwaarden. “With Assima, we’ve been able to create great multimedia training resources – all stored in a single, centralized, easy-to-maintain system.”

Assima creates an exact replica of the live app that is completely interactive, but with no sensitive patient data to worry about.

Leerhuis Hans van Herwaarden
Zuyderland MC Manager

Results and Benefits

With Assima Suite, Zuyderland MC trained 2,500 nurses on SAP rapidly and cost-effectively. Classroom training requirements for nurses were reduced by 50%, delivering associated cost savings and freeing staff to spend more time with patients. Zuyderland MC has combined instructor-led training with eLearning, reducing the classroom training requirement for each nurse from seven days to just three and a half days. “Instead of training 2,500 nurses from scratch in the classroom, we sent out a link to Assima eLearning exercises and asked them all to prepare in advance of their classroom training sessions,” said Hans van Herwaarden. “That meant classroom sessions were focused on consolidating their knowledge and answering questions, which made the whole thing much faster and more efficient.” Halving the classroom training requirement for nurses delivered major cost savings for the hospital, while also improving the patient experience. “By cutting classroom training times for each nurse by half, we’ve been able to increase time and budgets available for core patient-facing services,” said Hans van Herwaarden. “Less time training means more time looking after patients, and that’s what it’s all about.”

High quality, effective training

The quality and consistency of Assima training also helped Zuyderland MC enhance patient care. “Because the Assima clones are exact copies of the live SAP application, nurses are building their skills and confidence on the new system very quickly,” said Hans van Herwaarden. “As a result, the SAP migration has been completely transparent to patients, who received excellent care throughout.”

Protection for sensitive patient data

Assima solutions enabled Zuyderland MC to train nurses with no risk to sensitive patient data. “Assima creates an exact replica of the live app that is completely interactive, but with no sensitive patient data to worry about,” said Hans van Herwaarden. “It’s a secure training approach that is also compliant with health care industry regulations for data protection and management.”

Continual improvement

In the near future, Zuyderland MC will deploy Assima Digital Assistant, an in-app support and training system that helps nurses minimize errors and provide the best patient care in the long term. “We’re keen to deploy Assima Assist which provides prompts and guidance for nurses from within their SAP applications,” said Hans van Herwaarden. “As well as helping them complete tasks more efficiently, the technology also checks customer’s medical and billing details against a range of databases to ensure that mistakes are minimized.”

Taking process changes in their stride

Assima Assist also helps hospitals manage frequent updates in process and compliance requirements. “Every month, our systems change in some way, and we can’t retrain nurses every time it happens,” said Hans van Herwaarden. “With Assima Assist, we could inform nurses of changes in SAP as they work, which is a huge advantage for us, and also for our patients.”