Using the ELF Tool

The ELF tool is not designed to be used directly by end users. The intended users of the ELF tool are training, communication, and deployment managers. The following sections provide step-by-step guidance on how to use the ELF tool.

Note   The ELF tool can be found online at http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=74204.

On This Page

Home Page Home Page
About the ELF Tool About the ELF Tool
Get Recommended Topics Get Recommended Topics
Report Report

Home Page

After navigating to the ELF online tool, the tool’s home page, shown in Figure 1, appears. This page serves as your introduction to the ELF tool and is the starting point for using ELF. This page contains a brief overview of the ELF tool and its intended use.

Figure 1. The ELF tool home page

Figure 1. The ELF tool home page

To provide feedback to the ELF team, a Site Feedback link is available at the bottom of each page.

About the ELF Tool

After reviewing the information provided on the home page, select the About the Framework link located near the top of the home page for a detailed view of the features and benefits of the ELF tool, information on whom the ELF tool benefits, and instructions on how to use the ELF tool. Figure 2 shows the first half of the About page, which illustrates the ELF tool’s key benefits and target audience as well as how the ELF tool works.

Figure 2. The About page (part 1)

Figure 2. The About page (part 1)

Figure 3 shows the second half of the About page, which illustrates how to use the ELF tool and also provides tips on how to successfully proceed through the report-creation process.

Figure 3. The About page (part 2)

Figure 3. The About page (part 2)

When the benefits of the ELF tool are understood and team members have a general understanding of the tool’s use, they can enter the next phase of the ELF by clicking the Get recommended topics link.

The Get Recommended Topics Phase consists of three steps used first to define the presented subject matter, and then to allow team members to further refine the results that will be included in the report. The criteria include basic categories such as employee categories and situations, deployment timeframes, hardware-specific topics, special situations, and feature-specific topics. When a team member selects all appropriate criteria, the tool provides information about the requested topics.

Step 1: Choose Products

During the Choose Products step, select which products for which the ELF tool should provide guidance. Figure 4 illustrates this step. Select all pertinent options from the list, click Next, and then proceed to Step 2.

Figure 4. Choose products

Figure 4. Choose products

If the user does not provide the required inputs to allow ELF to properly move to the next step, a validation violation will occur, and a descriptive message such as that shown in Figure 5 appears.

Figure 5. Sample validation violation message

Figure 5. Sample validation violation message

Step 2: About Your Employees

Step 2 consists of three sections that allow you to define the type of employee being targeted, the timeframes that should be reported, and the recommended topics that should be included with the report.

Section 1: Select Audience

In this section, shown in Figure 6, select an appropriate audience from the available user categories. This selection is used to place the topics on the appropriate place in the timeline. For example, Support employees get topics much earlier than information workers.

The Support category does not imply that the ELF tool includes technical and troubleshooting topics, which it does not. Rather, it suggests that support employees should review the same topics that end-users do, only much earlier.

Figure 6. Select employee categories

Figure 6. Select employee categories

Section 2: Select Deployment Timeframe

In this section, shown in Figure 7, select one or more deployment timeframes to be included in the report. The selections are used to provide content relative to the stage of deployment that is to be communicated to the employees.

Figure 7. Select the deployment timeframes

Figure 7. Select the deployment timeframes

Section 3: Select Situations

In this section, shown in Figure 8, select the appropriate options from the list as they pertain to the employees’ environments. These selections are used to provide appropriate instructional content for the employees. These selections represent employee-centered scenarios that cross products, rather than specific features.

Figure 8. Select Situations

Figure 8. Select Situations

Step 3: Refine Topics

In the Refine Topics step, shown in Figure 9, select various filters and topic categories to further refine the information used to create the final report. After making the appropriate selections, click Finish and proceed to the Results page.

Figure 9. Refine topics

Figure 9. Refine topics

Report

The information provided in the previous phases of the ELF tool is used to create a report of recommended user learning topics grouped by category and timeframe. Within each category, team members can select those topics that are relevant to the organization.

Refine Topic Recommendations

If the results listed in the final report are not a match for the targeted employees and must be adjusted, click Modify Search to return to Step 1 of the Get Recommended Topics Phase. All previous selections are maintained, so team members can review them and make any required adjustments. Clicking New Search resets all options to default values and returns the user to Step 1 of the Get Recommended Topics Phase.

After completing this last phase of selection and filtering, send the listing of selected training topics to a file or an e-mail message. If the team member selected more than one deployment timeframe during Step 2 of the Get Recommended Topics Phase, each deployment timeframe appears separated by a highlighted section marker. Within each section, Create HTML E-mail and Create Text E-mail buttons are available that, if selected, creates a new e-mail message containing those items that have been selected.

Figure 10 and Figure 11 illustrate sample listings of recommended training topics grouped by deployment timeframes.

Note Highly recommended topics are preceded by an asterisk (*).

Figure 10. Sample report (week before deployment)

Figure 10. Sample report (week before deployment)

Figure 11. Sample report (deployment day)

Figure 11. Sample report (deployment day)

Create Document

Click Create Document to create a template training document. When created, team members can edit this document to ensure that it meets the organization’s needs, and then share it with employees. Selecting any of the hyperlinks listed in this document opens an Internet browser session, redirects the employee to Windows Online, and provides the desired instructional materials.

After clicking Create Document and opening the created document in Microsoft Office Word, a report appears that contains the selected training topics for all listed deployment timeframes. A sample report is shown in Figure 12.

Figure 12. Sample document

Figure 12. Sample document

Create E-mail

Click Create HTML E-mail or Create Text E-mail to generate a template e-mail message.

Note The current version of the ELF tool is limited to creating template e-mail messages on computers on which Microsoft Office Outlook® is installed. The Microsoft Internet Explorer® Pop-up Blocker should be set to Disabled. Otherwise, the user may not be able to view items such as the e-mail help page. Also, the Internet browser security settings must be adjusted so the Initialize and script ActiveX controls not marked as safe option is set to Prompt. If this setting has not been configured and the user selects Create HTML E-mail or Create Text E-mail, an information window such as that shown in shown in Figure 13 appears, prompting the user to follow the proper configuration procedure.

Figure 13. Configuring settings in Internet Explorer

Figure 13. Configuring settings in Internet Explorer

Sample e-mail messages that have been created using the ELF Tool are shown in Figures 14, 15, and 16. Team members can edit the e-mail messages, and then send them to employees. When an employee receives this communication, he or she can select any hyperlink listed, each of which opens an Internet browser session and redirects the employee to the desired instructional materials.

Figure 14. Sample e-mail message (a week before deployment) in HTML format

Figure 14. Sample e-mail message (a week before deployment) in HTML format

Figure 15. Sample e-mail message (deployment day) in HTML format

Figure 15. Sample e-mail message (deployment day) in HTML format

Figure 16. Sample e-mail message (deployment day) in text format

Figure 16. Sample e-mail message (deployment day) in text format

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