Training, Testing and Performance Evaluations

January 31, 2019 Steve HolmgrenEastern Ontario 401 Views

Does your company have senior employees who have, through years of experience, developed a wealth of knowledge in specific areas that will be lost once they retire? The challenge is to find a way to transfer this knowledge to younger employees in an organized manner.

1. What is your company’s current situation?

How many employees do you have that will be retiring in the next 5 years? How are you planning to replace them? How many younger employees do you have that you want to give specific training to?

The group spoke to a person on the need to replace upwards of 60% of their staff/employees over the next 5 years, some face 60% with particular attrition of young stationary engineers, spoke to the hour glass effect of the labour force. Firms were speaking to the success of month long co-ops and relying of faculty staff to provide a heads up as to whom should be spoken for future recruitment. Loss of maintenance people just after completing apprenticeship programs citing lower wage rates – Manufacturing GPS for real time labour market compensation data to provide guidance for manufacturing.

2. What types of training are you presently using to give employees specific training?

How well is it working? How do you measure what the trainee actually is learning?

It was cited that hiring young without the preconceived notions of how things should work has been advantageous. Asked if the colleges were doing the job - “it depends on the year.” Mentioning that one must be careful and ensure a work term to test the waters on the person. Training for younger workers works using a tablet – others using paper and pen, and some hold the data in the head of the supervisor. On company spoke to their electronic system Training Tracker – (might be a good reason for a visit to look at the system – hint??) Others mentioned the use of SOP’s and Supplier machine instructions to assist with training of new employees. Methods were primarily video, with some paper applications. HR download has been helpful for training and tracking. Mentoring was mentioned and its importance to the new hire – with mention made of reversing the roles to create greater empathy and skill development. SF spoke to her initiative to assist our labour market demands with immigration support for skilled and semi-skilled employees.

3. What programs or training materials do you use?

This can be both in the office or the shop floor.  How do you schedule the training? And is the training happening as planned?

One company spoke to the top down driven demands of the CEO to ensure training is being done and measured. Its part of the appraisal process with procedures documented. Month long training on days ensuring a mentor for the program for each new hire – someone who is constant in the person’s work life despite the number of trainers this person has in a given period. Onboarding work being done over that period where new hires get the full knowledge of the culture and policies of the place of employment. Training action plans provided focus to ensure completion. CS spoke to their special needs employees and the requirement for a fuller assessment of the behavioural profile of the person in question prior to introductory training and then deployment to various customers. New employees must be able to source the proper documentation quickly and accurately.

4. How do you make training a priority over the day to day fires that have to be extinguished?

How much time do you have people devote to training in a given month? Do you monitor the trainee’s progress?

It was mentioned What gets measured gets done. It takes discipline and perhaps recognition in wage progression to ensure training is effective and to be executed. Additionally, it must be driven from the top. Training matrices were discussed. By task and duty by person on a 1 to 5 rating. Lead Hand to perform with follow up quality checks. New hires at interim 110 and 240-day evaluation points for with annual Role, Responsibility and Expectation set accordingly.

5. Do you have any successes that you think apply to this group discussion?

One company spoke to their recent success in recruiting from Queen’s. 5 outstanding applicants with 2 chosen. Were sent into Field Operations to become full acquainted with where it all happens for the company. CEO met with them to review their progress and get to know the Engineers. CEO left very impressed with the talent that the company had secured.

6. How would you step up the training so that it happens in a shorter time period?

What other types of training approaches are you considering using? (E-learning, Webinars, paid courses, in-house training materials, etc.)

Group spoke to speeding up the training and learning of motor winders – discussion around training the trainers to ensure adult learning methods are utilized. Some aspects of specialized training are not delivered given they do not occur on a regular basis – knowledge spikes were mentioned – European motors as an example – how does a company ensure completeness of training if relying on – on-the-job training with existing work orders. Discussion around supplier documentation, Blue prints, OEM doc’s and manufacturers information supplied for equipment would lend itself to providing the basis for training.

7. Do you have experience with employee self-directed training?

And what tools did you use to program it, schedule it, and measure how effective it was? Some discussion around the table on this except for the Training Tracker program used – it provided the awareness by supervisors and employees alike. Tuition pay programs at most facilities with reimbursement after passing program.