Stay Connected and Flexible with On-Demand Training/Learning Management Software
At the time of this article, many states are in the process of reopening their economies, and many employers are in the process of returning to work after extended periods of absence or reduced operations. With all of the business impacts caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, many of these employers might also be finding that they’ve fallen behind on workplace EHS training, or have concerns about how to manage training in light of social distancing guidelines that are still in effect. Employers who traditionally delivered training through in-person classroom sessions or on-site consultants may now be finding that those methods are either unavailable or ineffective moving forward.
A growing number of employers are now realizing the benefits of On-Demand Training (ODT), also called Learning Management software, which leverages eLearning technologies to provide workers with access to a wide range of training content on EHS topics that can be taken anywhere or anytime, and gives employers advanced tools to simplify training management. In what follows, we’ll take a brief look at how ODT can help give employers the tools and flexibility needed to keep their workers safe in these challenging times.
If your employees are still working remotely, they may be feeling isolated or experiencing difficulty adjusting to changes in their normal routines. For workers returning to the physical workplace, they may be struggling to balance their normal job functions and responsibilities with the demands of return-to-work safety protocols, and the uncertainties of COVID-19. Either way, it’s possible that they, just like many of us, are having a harder time than usual staying focused on safety.
ODT gives employers access to a library of training courses that they can deploy at any time, so they no longer have to interrupt their workplace training programs because of external disruptions like COVID-19. This helps ensure your workers are current with the training they need, and is especially useful for workers placed into new roles upon re-entry of the workplace who need to quickly get up to speed.
Addressing your training needs quickly, preferably before physical re-entry occurs, helps you ensure your workers are safe throughout your return-to-work process. As a bonus, you’ll save money because you won’t have to divert time and resources to training once you’re back in the workplace.
OK everyone, this question requires audience participation. With a show of hands, how many of you love being in a crowded classroom for dull lectures on workplace EHS training topics? Anyone? I didn’t think so. I don’t much care for those sessions either, and I’ve been in plenty of them.
My next question is, if none of us actually like training in that format, why do we assume our employees would like it? Why would we assume that they’ll be engaged with our training if we’re relying on those same old tactics?
ODT can help us improve engagement by offering training content that our workers can consume when and where they choose, which ultimately improves their ability to focus on the training content rather than the people around them or the other priorities on their schedule. They can also take the training at their own pace. We all learn a little differently, so the freedom to consume training content at the rate we can most effectively absorb it helps workers complete training more effectively.
The truth is, none of us know what the future holds when it comes to COVID-19. Overall numbers of reported new COVID-19 cases and fatalities across the country are currently falling, but the numbers continue to climb in many states, as shown in this chart updated in real time. That’s not even factoring in the potential for a resurgence of COVID-19 cases, or the potential for future pathogens to emerge. As this CDC’s infographic shows, the world has been confronted with multiple epidemics just since 2003, when the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the SARS pandemic a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC).
Upticks in the numbers of COVID-19 cases, emerging information about the disease, and publication of new federal or local government guidelines could all prompt greater levels of social distancing in the workplace, if not outright workplace closures. These developments, in turn, could further affect our options for conducting workplace EHS training.
The advantage of ODT is that employers can deploy it anyway (or ways) they need. If you want to do classroom training, even with smaller class sizes, ODT can help you do that. If you want to let employees take the training on their own schedules, perhaps through remote learning, ODT can help you do that too. The flexibility offered by ODT and eLearning formats is still being realized.
We’re living in uncertain times, so why not give yourself the agility to keep your workers trained and safe, no matter what the future may hold.
Training is important for covering basic safety guidelines, improving risk awareness, and meeting EHS regulatory requirements. But more than that, training is a way of staying connected to your workers, engaging them in your workplace safety culture, and showing your commitment to their health and well-being. It shows them you support them and are invested in their future, which is something all of us need to know right now, more than ever.
By keeping all of your employees tuned into your workplace safety culture and EHS programs, ODT helps connect workers to both company leadership and to each other, and shows them that even in a changing world, their company continues to keep safety top of mind.
Let VelocityEHS Help!
Looking for more information about ODT? Be sure to check out our ODT Solutions page, which includes a list of expert-designed EHS training courses and details about how our Learning Management System (LMS) software can help simplify training delivery, tracking and reporting.
For additional information and best practices on managing training in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, click here watch our on-demand webinar.
VelocityEHS continues to closely follow the ongoing developments from regulators and public health agencies during the COVID-19 pandemic, and we’re committed to connecting you with the information you need to stay safe and healthy during these challenging and uncertain times.
Check out our VelocityEHS COVID-19 Resource Site for a growing library of helpful resources, including free access to tools that can help you simplify compliance and focus on what matters most. One of our most recent additions is our State by State Guide to COVID-19 Guidance and Recommendations, which may be especially useful for employers operating in multiple states.
If you want to hear more about our cloud-based EHS software solutions can help, including managing SDSs and other hazard communication obligations for cleaning products, IH management, audits and inspections management, and compliance management, please feel free to contact us.
Please stay safe, continue to follow guidance provided by public health experts, and we’ll get through this together.