If you work in a facility that is part of a large corporation, the workers at your site need YOU more than they ever have!

Why?!? Because you have knowledge of the procedures necessary to your plant’s operations and you have knowledge of the training gaps that exist within your facility. Gaps that are hindering outputs of more and better products! Gaps that result in increased scrap and lost revenue for your corporation!

Up until the last decade most training purchases were made on the individual plant level. Those purchases were typically made by individuals, like you, who either had actual plant floor experience or by professional trainers.

Today, the buyers of technology training solutions have changed. And, in many instances, that has not been a good thing for learning outcomes.

Recently, driven by e-Learning technology, many of those same purchases, that you routinely made, are now executed at the corporate level and, far too often, by individuals who have come out of an HR or technology environment. Few of these corporate buyers have had prior shop floor experience or ever were professional trainers.

Unfortunately for the workers who have to take the training, much of what is purchased today are ex-PowerPoint presentations or ex-written procedures that have been re-purposed for e-Learning delivery. And, as we all know by now, those types of e-Learning do not teach anyone anything. They violate almost all knowledgeable instructional design principles. They totally ignore the fact that half of our nation’s workforce does not comprehend above a 4th Grade reading level. And, as national statistics prove, 70% of re-purposed PowerPoint and re-purposed written procedure courses are never completed by the trainees.

It’s past time to get some of our supervisors, with plant floor experience, and plant training personnel back into the corporate decision process.

Without our knowledgeable people involved, far too many e-Learning purchase decisions are based on “title searches.” And, that has proven catastrophic. “Pump Maintenance” is just a title with little learning value unless it has been produced by someone who understands that the results of media-based instructional design is vastly superior to the “read-only” courses that have, disastrously, begun to proliferate.

A few vendors have actually done nothing more than stock their e-Learning catalogs with re-purposed written procedures and re-purposed PowerPoint presentations that had been produced years earlier on a customized basis. The fat catalogs they publish are actually listings of nonsense. They’ve called these re-purposed programs “e-Learning” but that claim could not be further removed from any effective learning process. Those vendors are relying on corporate buyers looking at the large number of titles being peddled and, then, making the mistaken assumption that those titles will actually contribute to the learning process.

Other vendors will send their courseware production activities overseas where the courses can be templated and stamped out, one after the other, with no awareness of the design requirements disparate subjects require.

Nope. “All titles are not created equal.” American corporations had better bring our subject knowledgeable employees and our training knowledgeable employees back into the corporate buying process — and, quickly!

More on Thursday – – – – –

— Bill Walton, Founder, ITC Learning