My name is Craig Taylor and I work for an organisation called URENCO UK who are part of the Nuclear Industry. You WILL be pleased to hear that in my personal opinion the nuclear Industry is VERY safe, which is obviously a bonus when you consider the implications of it NOT being so!!!
This is down to us operating in a highly regulated industry, its inherent risk aversion, bureaucratic procedures and the fact that it is regulated by the Nuclear Installations Inspectorate, the Office of Civil Nuclear Security and the Environment Agency ALL add to creating a + safety culture but one that also brings a LOT of training.
We have approx 2600 statutory training requirements. Many of these events have a refresher period attached ranging from 3 months to 4 years, soyou can see that that we deliver a LOT of statutory training VERY often.
The challenge was set for me to reduce this massive drain on our resources.The first option I undertook was to critically review the need this amount of training. To be fair though the statutory, legislative, H&S related events were there for a reason so I hadn't expected much of a win in this area.
The next option was to review the refresher periods for these events, this achieved greater success but as I was removing refresher periods from one event our Danger Experts (or H&S Advisers) were busy studying HSE guidance to stick a refresher period on another event so it was like robbing Peter to payPaul.
So I was left with what I felt was the final option and that was to look at whether our employees actually had to jump through hoops in the form of refresher or whether we had to prove that individuals were competent,I was really pleased (and surprised) that we were only required to demonstrate competence and not formally retrain.
We adopted an Assess-Train-Assess approach, essentially an INDIVIDUAL undertakes formal introductory training via whatever medium f2f, elearning, etcat which point their refresher clock starts ticking down. Prior to that countdown clock running out, the individual undertakes a competency assessment
If they are able to demonstrate the requisite level of competence then the clock is reset, if they are unable to demonstrate the requisite level of competence then they are required to jump through that hoop again in the form of undertaking some undertake some additional development in that area.
We trialled this approach via a f2f assessment for our Pendant Crane Operators, of whom there are 118 people having to undertake a 1-day refresher every 12 months!!! Like I said a BIG drain on resources.
Over the first 2 years of this approach not 1 person was identified as requiring additional development. 236 man-days of training had just been saved! This approach was a great success and was met with open arms by the learners themselves, not to mention their Line Managers and the L&D function.
This success led us consider how we could apply this to other subjects but use technology to smarten up the process even further.We currently have 4 events that are being assessed using our rapid elearning tool and a similar number using Survey Monkey.
One of those assessments is for our Basic Radiation Workers event, this event is aimed at those who are classified as ‘monitored workers’ . The initial f2f training takes place during the induction period of the target audience on completion of which their refresher period starts counting down…
Prior to that refresher period expiring the individual undertakes a scenario based e-assessment. Success means a restarting of their refresher period, failure means re-attendance at the f2f event.
We started to use our rapid elearning tool to develop scenario based assessments, however this still took some time to produce due to the complexity of the tool and the relative inexperience of the Subject Matter Experts.
So we have started to utilise Survey Monkey and in particular the page logic function which allows scenario type assessments to be created far more quickly than in an authoring tool albeit without the pretty graphics and UI
Both the rapid elearning development tool and SurveyMonkey have allowed us to create multiple choice type questions to kick start an assessment or part of an assessment, but we have been extremely careful to ensure that once a multiple choice type response has been provided that we then…
… dig down into that answer by using free-text responses to test their deeper understanding of their previous response to ensure that it wasn’t a lucky guess. i.e. “why would you not come to the site in the event of an emergency call out in the middle of a night”
So for what is left of these 20 seconds I would like ALL of YOU to consider what you can do to challenge and innovate the assessment of the statutory training within YOUR organisations.
Hopefully, you’ve all identified 1 area to potentially challenge and innovate in. Why not share this with me via the comment section of this slideshare page, Twitter, or even my blog?
Using Technology to enhance an Assess-Train-Assess approach