OverviewCompetency Training Systems International
Does this sound familiar?
You supply just-in-time-training for your employees to meet regulatory training requirements. These training duties and responsibilities are rotated among employees, who either show an inclination toward the administration of training, or know enough about training to supply the basic information required. Because the effectiveness of this transfer of knowledge cannot be gauged, the training may fall well below desired results.
In 2008, CTS International began development of a competency-based training system. This system is comprised of training modules and standard operating procedures (SOP). Each training module consists of a Job Competency Requirement (JCR), Standard Answers (SA), and may or may not, have one or more Standard Operating Procedures(SOP) linked to it.
Job Competency Requirements (JCR)
A JCR is a compilation of the minimum knowledge and skills that an individual must know (knowledge), and demonstrates (skill), in order to qualify, or be certified to perform, specific routine or abnormal duties that are necessary for the safety and security of a utility’s employees, and to ensure proper operation of equipment or systems. The JCR provides a uniform, company-wide documentation system that standardizes and facilitates these qualifications. The goal of the JCR is to:
- Maintain expertise by providing fully qualified employees who have met or exceeded the minimum standards for a utility’s routine and abnormal duties.
- Promote initiative and responsibility by providing the employee with specific objectives, job-relevant training requirements, and a list of readily available references and resources.
- Standardize and facilitate employee qualifications by detailing the skills necessary to qualify for a specific task, or to perform as a team member when teamwork is required to accomplish a task.
When the JCR is approved, it becomes the competencies that are used in long-term staffing, succession planning, professional development, and performance reviews.
The training system will sustain itself, but only if data is collected and action is taken to correct deficiencies and optimize advantages. To this end, designated SME (Subject Matter Experts), are trained on how to assess the competency of another employee based on the Standard Answers. The goal is to have assessments that provide management and employees with the answers to “why” an employee did not accomplish a competency. These reasons fall into four categories.
- Training: Information was not successfully transferred from trainer to employee.
- Material: The equipment and/or tools are inoperative or defective, thus affecting the employee’s ability to accomplish the task.
- Knowledge, Skill, Ability (KSA): The employee did not have the requisite KSA to accomplish the task.
- Environment: The training environment affected the employee’s accomplishment of the task.
Using this assessment, the reason an employee could not accomplish the competency is identified. This information helps to refine the training system, and ensures that proper responsibilities are identified, while connections are made to ensure an employee’s future success in meeting the competencies required of the job. Competency-based training provides a formalized structured training system that improves employee morale, provides institutional knowledge management, and forecasts future long-term staffing needs.
Training the Trainer
Many employees are tasked with training their peers, even if they, themselves, had little or no training on how to effectively train and assess. The expectation was that training and knowledge transfer was taking place. Senior employees were left to conduct the on-the-job training (OJT), and assess their peer’s ability to accomplish the task. In order to standardize this activity, CTS has developed a “Train-the-Trainer” program that provides detailed instruction on development of documents and use of tools within the system. Several SME’s are selected to attend a 16-hour course, over four days, which introduces the employees to adult learning theories and principles, how to develop a training module, how to instruct using a training module, and how to assess an employee after they have attended classroom, OJT instruction, or a blended approach.
CTS provides our customers with the option of training those employees that will train their peers using the Competency Training System. The course is sixteen hours in length and normally divided into four, four hour days. This can be modified at the request of the customer. The Train-The-Trainer course covers the following areas:
Adult Learning Theory
- Define Training
- Adult Learning Processes
- Adult Learning Styles
Training Module Development
Components and structure of a Training Module
Develop a Job Competency Requirement
Develop Standard Answers
Develop an SOP
Training Strategies and Techniques
- Understand techniques in the classroom, OJT and blended learning
- Develop curriculum from a training module
- Describe tools to use to ensure the transfer of knowledge takes place
- Know what an assessment is and why we use them
- Develop an assessment from a Training Module
- Assess an employees performance
The Train-The-Trainer course focuses on Treatment Plant Operator, Maintenance Mechanic and Collection Services Workers with future expansion to many jobs within the utility arena. CTS works closely with management to determine candidates for the course.