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When you were a kid, going to school and getting passing grades was not optional—it was expected. And if you did not score well on assignments and quizzes, it would most certainly show up on your report card. Reflecting on all the classes and assignments, it’s evident now that your teachers were training you for something you would probably need later.

Never Stop Learning

The sage advice that “it’s never too late to learn something new” can apply to work-related learning (a.k.a. training) just as well as daily life. Learning something new may help us not only do our jobs better, but often, more safely. The consequences, though, of not taking advantage when educational opportunities present themselves could result in a bad report card of another kind: costly mistakes, lost profits, fines, accidents, injuries, or even fatalities.

School is starting soon for the kids—how about for the grown-ups as well? This may be a good time to plan and carry out employee training, whether for new information or for a refresher.

Deciding Training Needs

Begin by checking required training. Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, employers are responsible for providing a safe and healthful workplace. No person should ever have to risk injury, illness, or even death for a paycheck. The unfortunate truth is that most OSHA standards were created as a result of harmful incidents. Training expectations for your type of business can be found at www.osha.gov. Search for “Training Requirements” in OSHA Standards.

Next, look at your company’s experience. Usually, near misses, accidents, and/or injury trends indicate that something needs adjusting. Both completed accident investigations and claims experience should be reviewed periodically. Your insurance company can help you.

Deciding How to Train

The two more common forms of training are instructor-led and computer-based. Both methods have their place. Instructor-led jobsite meetings get everyone together at the same time to teach safety awareness and to provide training on current topics. Computer-based training works well for employee orientation, to train employees who were absent from prior sessions, or if an employee’s performance demonstrates a need for retraining.

Many technologies are available to help meet training objectives. Two offered by Federated are the Seven Minute Safety Trainer mobile app, designed to help manage and coordinate instructor-led employee training, and TrainingToday computer-based training with the built-in flexibility of a learning management system (LMS) to manage online training experiences. Both technologies have quality content coupled with the ability to schedule, track, and document employee training. Your local Federated marketing representative has more information.