Instructional design for technical training is all about imparting the hard skills required to improve your performance. It is about using the right instructional strategy to deliver the most appropriate learning at the right moment. Training to use heavy machinery and equipment, industrial tools, automated production systems, computers and mobile devices forms the key areas where the workforce needs specialized skills. Answer these 5 questions to know if your technical training is really effective in providing the desired learning for enhanced productivity:
Have you identified the right blended approach?
Let’s assume you are training the prospective workforce for automobile industry for the role of service persons and mechanics. Have you included the right amount of practical component in your curriculum? Will the trainees get enough hands-on practice? Is your training strategy a blend of classroom, e-learning and mobile learning? This book on e-learning is an excellent resource that answers your questions and concerns.
Is your training content integrated with the industry requirements?
How do you ensure that your training content is regularly updated to keep pace with fast changing industry? What if you’ve already trained people in skills that are not needed anymore? If your training happens to be a part of larger vocational diploma program that was designed ages ago, you need to check on the current relevance of your training content. For example, in training for manufacturing skills, several processes are getting automated and the older manual way of doing things has become obsolete.
How proactive is your training delivery?
Is delivery of training a big hurdle in executing your programs? Are you constrained because of lack of proper infrastructure like large classrooms, workshops, digital devices and so on? How about being proactive and going where the learners are! Think differently and try out public places and industry premises as applicable to your area of knowledge and skills.
Is your training skills-based?
Technical training is primarily about manual skills. What percentage of your training is focused on developing skills through hands-on practice? Focus on skills doesn’t mean ruling out the theory component; will your learners get to know the ‘what’ and ‘why’ aspects along with the ‘how’ part of it? Are you preparing the learners to perform from day one when they get back to work or soon after their placement on the job?
What is your follow-up strategy?
Do you have a plan to follow up with more training? Are you going to plan more training sessions; will it not disrupt the working schedule of the trainees? Training should not end with the end of the formal program. What is learnt needs to be applied on the job and the effectiveness can be gauged by evaluating the performance. Did you consider adopting digital interventions like mobile apps for continuous learning, especially on-the-job?
Whether offered pre-job or on-the-job, technical training is indispensable for skill development and performance improvement. Seeking answers to the above questions will ensure that your training is going in the right direction and it will positively impact the learners, the industry and the economy at large!