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Are You An Overworked Training Manager? Here’s Big Help!

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Are You An Overworked Training Manager? Here’s Big Help!

At a recent gathering of training managers, one of them was heard commenting about her hectic work life. She said, “Work’s hectic! What with having to keep track of multiple training programs across four locations, keeping them up to date, and juggling trainings for want of space. And then there are the assessments and collation of those results; and tying up goals and achievements! And then, when it’s all done, I start all over again with the next batch of trainees – it never ends!”

Then, as an afterthought, she added, “… it’s exhausting! I wonder if I do justice to any aspect of my job! My plate’s more than full and I desperately need help!”

The rest of the group agreed that there were several times when they had all felt that way.

Sounds familiar? How often do you, as a training manager or instructor, feel overworked and unable to devote sufficient time to training? Here’s an account of an organization whose instructors felt that way.

The Organization

A premier training organization actively involved in training industrial security forces on disaster management, aviation security, and critical infrastructural security.

The Training

Conducted over a 53-week period; almost 3,000 periods of both indoor (classroom) and outdoor training that includes specialized training, upgrading of managerial skills and knowledge, and induction of sophisticated gadgetry. Cadets pass out with the highest mental and physical fitness.

A big part of a training manager’s job is to assess training needs, create training plans and courses that are relevant, up-to-date, aligned with company goals, and fulfill training requirements. The efficacy of courses is periodically reviewed, and training must be conducted regularly and consistently.

Often, a small training budget, lack of funds, and ignorance on the efficacy of automation of processes, leaves training managers doing all the work manually. Even if these managers have subordinates who can manage these processes, they must still involve themselves with collaborating and evaluating training programs, training, and feedback, the training itself, analyzing the efficacy of training programs, and so much more.

The day-to-day responsibilities of this organization’s instructors extended beyond just training, as well.

The Day-to-day Responsibilities:

  • Planning and updating training calendars and material
  • Enrolling participants, assigning faculty, and allocating facilities
  • Recording attendance; collecting feedback
  • Creating and delivering indoor and outdoor training; creating assessments
  • Evaluating assessments, training, and feedback; Creating individual report cards
  • Consolidating reports on performance, attendance, and feedback

While these are part-and-parcel of a training program, an instructor’s quintessential job is ensuring the workforce receives sufficient and satisfactory training. But, pre- and post-training chores rob instructors of time and energy that could be spent on conducting training – and could lead to dire consequences.

The Consequences:

  • 80% of time spent on manual administrative work and only 20% on training
  • Phenomenal amount of paperwork across departments that had to be collected from all departments, and collated
  • Difficulty in tracking and training learners
  • Reports were late in coming in
  • Notifications on course updates were put up on noticeboards and were often missed by both faculty and students 

Instructors were overworked, and this affected training. There was also a greater chance of errors with manual entries.

In this era of technological inventions, there is no reason for us to be bogged down with work that can otherwise be automated. Technology-enabled learning has helped us take most of our training online, and manual training processes can be automated to cut down time, costs, and wastage of resources; and that’s the path this organization decided to take.

The Plan:

  • Decentralize training for easier management
  • Improve efficiencies
  • Reduce costs
  • Enhanced training approach using technology 

Organizations across the globe are using technology-enabled methods to reduce manual labor; however, blindly delving into a plan – especially one that involves new technologies and methodologies, is never a good idea.

The plan that was devised by this organization was doable, but it was important to look at the big picture and what could be at stake – highly classified information, several thousands of learners – and probably more in the coming years, and the problems associated with using unfamiliar technology – to name a few.

Taking all these considerations into account, the organization listed out the important features they required in an automated system.

The Requirements:

1. A Learning management system that is:

  • Secure
  • Able to accommodate growing requirements
  • Simple and easy-to-use
  • Has knowledge sharing features
  • Able to automate all manual processes associated with training and reporting

A reliable learning management system can automate manual training-related processes and perform actions that were unheard of a decade ago (such as customizing learning, tracking learning and training, and creating customized reports).

2. Development/evaluation of final test and performance

3. Deploy pre-training, eLearning, and final assessments using the new technology 

The Solution:

Open Source Learning Management System (LMS)

  • Scalable and secure
  • Customized to reflect organization’s branding and image
  • Configured to include required features
  • Simple and clean user interface
  • Discussion forums, blog, and chat features
  • Evaluation
  • Tracking
  • Customized reports
  • Creation of training calendar
  • Automatic reminders

A simple solution for a complicated problem – that solved several training-related issues at one go; successfully returning the focus back to training. 

The Results:

  • Instructors relieved of administrative duties
  • More time dedicated to creating and conducting training and assessments
  • Instant access to error-free reports
  • Able to pull out any type of report required, across departments
  • Drastic reduction in time, costs, and manpower linked to administration

The life of a training manager is not easy. It’s the technical aspects of training, the psychological aspects of adult learning, training a multigenerational workforce, satisfying the requirements of the organization and the needs of employees – both present and remote, that training managers should concern themselves with. It’s all in a day’s work for the training manager – so why not let the LMS do the rest?

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