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Getting The Most Out Of Your Industrial Training Efforts

Tue, 08/21/2007 - 11:00am
Preston Stiner, President, Evolve e-Learning Solutions
 
Considering the potential dangers of any industrial workplace, it's important to ensure that your employees get the training they need. Beyond safety concerns, there are environmental regulations, new equipment, new procedures and a wide range of other employee requirements. However, developing the courses can be time-consuming and stressful.
 
Define your objectives
 
Clearly defined objectives are crucial to an effective training course. Before you even start writing the actual content for the course, ask yourself what you want to accomplish with the course. For example, do you want to go over standard safety protocol or focus solely on individual safety scenarios and prevention measures? Decide what you want your employees to learn and break it down into points to cover.
 
Don't load too much information into one course
 
When compiling your information, be careful not to include too much material. The easiest way to drive a training course's effectiveness into the ground is to cram all the information there could possibly be on a subject into a single course. You might find it all interesting, but chances are your employees may resent spending an hour of their time taking a course when the same information could be presented in 15 minutes.
 
Stay on target
 
If you've defined your objectives, it should be relatively easy to stay focused and on-topic. There is the important information and then there is the fluff. Keep the important stuff, and discard the fluff, no matter how fascinating you think it is. Let your employees get in, take the course, and get back to their jobs.
 
Always have a conclusion
 
Just like a good article, a good training course needs a conclusion that sums up the main ideas in the course. By summarizing the main points of the course, you increase the chances of your employees retaining the information, which is the whole aim of a training course.
 
Get the most out of your courses
 
Try to make your courses as interactive and engaging as possible; don’t feel tied to a linear format. If you are using PowerPoint as your presentation software, you can utilize hyperlinks to create dynamic presentations based on a decision points. This allows you to create different paths for presenting the information rather than a pre-defined sequence that goes from one slide to the next.
 
Don’t overlook multimedia
 
Capture audience attention with audio, animations and illustrations. Anything you can do to engage employees in the presentation or material will help improve retention. For presentations with audio, it’s best to use the “on click” option to advance your slides. This allows you to synchronize your presentation with the audio you’re using. You also can utilize creative transitions for your slides. New information can slide in, spiral, fade or you can randomize the transitions.
 
Don’t get too caught up in these features at the expense of your training. If every word spirals in and blinks for 10 seconds, your message will be lost.
 
Take your training online
 
If you've developed a PowerPoint training course, you can easily distribute it to your employees using a learning management system with a flash conversion software program such as Swift Presenter. These software programs can turn your PowerPoint courses into online courses and allow you to record audio narration to synchronize with your animations to create an interactive course. You also can add an assessment quiz at the end to make sure your employees retained the information.
 
Don’t pay more for features you don’t need
 
There are several learning management systems out there, including many that are hosted so you don’t have to purchase and install software to your own servers. If you're interested in one, determine the features you really need before plunking down the money for software with all the bells and whistles. If you only need the bells, then why pay extra? Employee training doesn't have to be a headache. By taking the time to plan out and truly prepare your courses, you can ensure that your employees will be informed and knowledgeable in every aspect of your industry.
 
Fore more information, click here. Evolve e-Learning Solutions is a provider of training systems and programs.
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