Implementing your machining training.

Author:Rose, Steve
Position:Shop talk

You've made the decision to start a training program for your company. Congratulations! Here are a few ideas to help implement your training program.

Why train?

With today's economic environment there are many reasons to implement your own industrial-training program. Highly skilled people rarely walk in off the street looking for a job. Those people are snapped up before they reach the sidewalk.

When you can't find highly skilled people, you must build your own. This means training the current employees.

Training goals

The first step to building your training program is to have goals. Know your training goals and develop a plan to achieve them. Once your goals are set, communicate them to your staff:

Balance training and work

This does not mean an equal amount of each. Successful adult education programs provide short, intense training sessions, which meet a few times each week. A good schedule includes at least two training sessions of two hours per week. This allows employees to provide a full day's work and employers to provide quality training.

Create a friendly learning environment

Select a knowledgeable, personable instructor. A current employee may be an ideal instructor. This is not necessarily the person with the most technical experience. A good teacher communicates ideas and stimulates thought about the topics.

Keep the class to a manageable size. Give your staff the chance to learn and ask questions comfortably. Keep class sizes around eight to 10 students.

Measure your training progress

Your program must have a way to measure progress. Testing is a good way to accomplish this. A pre-test measures the knowledge level before training is started. Focus your training program around the concepts identified through the pre-test.

Once the training is initiated, continue gaging progress with short quizzes. Training is not something that occurs only two to four hours each week. Reinforce the concepts during the workday. On the production floor, encourage employees to use the concepts learned in class.

Complete the training program with a comprehensive exam. This can provide detailed feedback of the program's success.

Include in your training analysis: the starting point (gaged by the pre-test), the learning process (on-the-job use of training...

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