Every year, a number of employees get injured or lose their lives due to accidents at workplaces. According to the press release dated Sept 17, 2015 of the US Department of Labor, fatal work injuries gone up by 2 per cent in 2014, when it compared to previous year. On an average, 13 workers die every day on the job, and this is almost 90 a week and 4,679 a year. Fatal work injuries involving contractors accounted for 17 percent of all work injuries.
As we look at this data, workplace safety training is a must and it also makes solid business sense as it reduces accident-related absenteeism, loss of productivity, medical costs and huge legal penalties. To make these things true, choosing right instructional design techniques for safety training is crucial.
Here we bring five Instructional Design techniques for effective safety training at workplaces.
1. Play safe
Gamified learning approach literally works for safety training. This strategy reduced accidents and claim counts by 45 per cent at Pep Boys, a full-service automotive aftermarket retail chain in Philadelphia, PA. Safety training also helped Pep Boys to reduce its inventory shrink rates by 55 per cent. Gamified training programs engage uninterested learners too, because of the game elements in the online course. This approach allows the learner to involve and succeeds to impart the competitive spirit and slowly imbibe relevant learning.
2. Guided help
Guided learning approach also suits for safety training. Digital characters can be used to introduce the causes or hazards and guide the learners throughout the training. These avatars, vector images or characters help overcome the absence of physical instructor in a virtual environment and get the attention of learners. This approach also can be used to guide the learners for precautionary measures. For example, showing right and wrong postures at workplace with multiple vector images in ergonomics training can increase the productivity of employees at workplace.
3. Make Bite-sized videos
Videos grab learner’s attention and engage them. They are informative, visually elevate the course content and have high impact on viewers. Shooting the real videos relevant to the set context will imprint the learning, so that they can never forget while they work. Video is an effective medium to educate learners on correct manual handling techniques.
We can show the causes for accidents, prone situations and the precautionary measures to be taken in videos. This type of learning is ideal to avoid much of the accidents at work place. Lengthy videos can distract the learners attention and turns to be boring some times, so keeping the videos as short as possible to convey the key take away in a bite-sized manner maximizes the impact. To know more about the impact of videos in safety training, check this case study.
4. Dos & Don’ts Infographics
Info-graphics projects the dos and don’ts of safety in a precise, clear and visually appealing manner to learners. This type of presentation eliminates the complexity of large amounts of data and simplifies them in to useful insights. Infographics improves the retention of learners. For example, listing out permitted actions and restricted actions at the time of electric short circuit/fire accident or in any another incident in an infographic comes in handy to follow the set instructions.
Infographics are also helpful for learners to use safety equipment like fire extinguishers. Infographic demonstration with background audio narration explains the learners how to use PASS technique (Pull the Pin; Aim low at the base of the fire; Squeeze the lever above the handle; Release to stop the flow and Sweep from side to side) to extinguish fire.
5. Situations Bring Seriousness
In safety training, scenario based learning is used to introduce risk-based circumstances and support them to find the possible threats and make them to think best suitable solutions. Framing these scenarios can be based on real incidents happened in the past are helpful for learners to appropriate their prior knowledge.
Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) says, employers that implement effective safety and health management systems may expect to significantly reduce injuries and illnesses and minimize the costs associated with them. Safe culture at work can be promoted through skillfully-designed training courses that eliminate risks, protect lives, and improve efficiency.
Hope you liked this post. How do you implement safety training in your organization? We would love to hear your experiences.