Ongoing training is needed in all industries to ensure that staff is aware of and implement the most recent and relevant knowledge and techniques. This is particularly important when it comes to matters of compliance.
Too many companies view this training as something they have to get over and done with. This can lead to poorly planned and ineffective training that results in staff getting frustrated or bored, which results in knowledge gaps or misunderstandings.
Steps for Improving Training Effectiveness
Even if it takes a full day, a well-planned and strategic training session is never a waste. Improving how you approach and implement this training will ensure that staff members walk away with improved on the job skills that ultimately save time and money.
1. Survey your employees beforehand
For effective training, you first need to identify gaps in your employees’ knowledge and areas that need improvement in your service delivery and organizational processes. Surveying your staff, users and suppliers will give you a complete picture of organizational procedures and where improvements can be made.
2. Create key outcomes and communicate them
Determine what you expect to accomplish at minimum with the training and communicate this clearly to participants. Trying to cover more than one subject at a time might not be feasible but sometimes necessary in order to demonstrate a complete procedure. Try to find a balance so that your key outcomes are still clear and achievable.
3. Create an on-going learning path
Create an on-going learning path that your staff can follow throughout the year (or even multiple years). These can be tailored to teams or individuals, depending on your requirements. A culture of life-long learning is something that you should encourage within your organization if you want to stay ahead in your field or industry.
4. Choose the right training software
Training software can help you plan and schedule training sessions as well as monitor outcomes and track progress so you can identify areas that need improvement. Good training software will also facilitate surveying of staff, users and suppliers so you can identify the types of training needed.
5. Stay informed on industry trends
If procedures, processes and software requirements change in your industry, especially if they relate to compliance, you need to be aware of these changes in time to implement the necessary training. Being informed about these changes is the responsibility of the company and a failure to implement them with proper training could lead to penalties.
6. Refine your teaching methods over time
Gather data from your training sessions and look at outcomes to determine what areas should be changed, omitted or refined. Surveying participants both before and after training sessions will also help determine what worked and what didn’t. This may seem like a lot of extra work, but once you’ve refined your teaching methods, you’ll need to do it less often.
7. Identify the best time for training
Training for new products or procedures, as an example, need to take place a reasonable amount of time before they are implemented. If you get the timing wrong, staff won’t have a full understanding in time and your customer service will suffer. Also, avoid scheduling training sessions for busy times of the year such as before the annual shutdown.
8. Incentivize or reward training achievements
Staff members might view training sessions as an unwelcome interruption, which is not unwarranted if they’re really busy or working towards deadlines. To encourage a culture of learning and attentiveness during training sessions, rewards or incentives can be offered to staff members who are proactive or achieve exceptional results.
Training software from isoTracker
isoTracker’s training software module helps you plan and implement training sessions for employees, users and suppliers. The survey functions also help you understand what training is needed and by whom. Built-in corrective action features allow for easy resolution of any training or survey issues.
This software can stand alone, or it can be integrated with other isoTracker quality management modules including document control, CAPA, complaints management and audit management software.
Contact us to find out how our training software can help your business implement effective training sessions and surveys.