e-learning – 6 ways manufacturers can take advantage of it

 manufacturers and e-learning

Manufacturers need to work smart to stay ahead of their competition. They innovate and take advantage of technology to improve efficiency and reduce waste.  Their processes are geared to minimise downtime and ensure staff are productive for as much of the working day as possible as well as reducing their impact on the environment. Is your training department keeping up with the pace of change?

In many of the north east companies I’ve been talking to recently they are still not using technology for learning. There are not many manufacturing plants using the same equipment and processes of 30 years ago. But take a look at their training plans. They might have swapped chalkboards for whiteboards and replaced the overhead projector with powerpoint but in some organisations little else has changed. Of course, many manufacturers are using online learning to great effect but if you’re not on board with it yet, this is no time to hang around. Most budgets have been cut drastically and e-learning enables you to do more with less. Less time. Less resources. And less money.

One issue does come up though – if most of your staff work on the shop floor and don’t have much access to computers, how can they do an online course?

Here are 6 ways to get your staff learning online:

1 Office staff
You could start with office staff. Take Safety training for example – most manufacturers have great training in place for their high risk staff but the office workers sometimes don’t get the training they should. They can still sue you when they fall off an office chair after clambering up there to get a file. Even you do involve office staff in safety training it can usually be done very effectively online.

2 Let them learn from home
Most people in employment have a computer at home now. e-learning can be done from anywhere with an internet connection so you could give people 1 hour each to do a course from home. The Learning Management System (LMS) will track what they do online and how long they spent doing it. You could ask them to email their manager a certificate of completion or bring it into work with them.

3 Use the local library
Many libraries make computers available free of charge and many will let you book them in advance so this can be good for staff who don’t have pc’s at home.

4 Training Laptops
It only costs a few hundred pounds to buy a laptop these days so you could lend them to staff to use in a meeting room or to take home. Wifi ‘pay as-you-go’ dongles are a good option too so that people can get online at home when they don’t have web access.

5 Learning Resource Centre (LRC)
An LRC doesn’t have to mean a flashy room with a bank of computers and in fact this often puts shop floor staff off –  especially if it’s not near where they work. One or two pc’s in a quietish location is all you need. This is a good place to leave information on college courses and other courses you deliver as a company too.

6 Inductions
With e-learning you can have staff do essential safety training online – before they even set foot on your premises. If you want to move things up a notch,  you could create an online induction programme too so that new staff can learn about the business and get started on the job faster.

Leave a Reply