Workforce training can be tough. And tracking training can be even worse. Relying on loose papers or inaccessible files doesn't cut it anymore. In a fast-paced atmosphere, you need a reliable way to train your employees and track qualifications.
But let's take it a step further. What if the platform you use to track training could also help you leverage your employees’ skills?
With this in mind, we are proud to introduce a new feature that enables you to track employee qualifications and strategically plan your workforce! Whether in a classroom or out on the shop floor, workforce training is now more powerful than ever.
Let us show you how it works.
Greater Knowledge & Better Planning
Before the implementation of this new feature, users of the VKS software would use the Training Requirements checkbox, which was beneficial for 2 reasons:
- For advanced procedures, operators without the necessary training would not be able to access a specific guidebook;
- And when a process changes, operators would not be able to access the guidebook until a supervisor has verified that they are aware of the changes.
This assures management that the correct employees are performing the right jobs at all times.
Let’s Take This a Step Further
But we decided to take this a step further and provide a simple yet powerful enhancement to this method. We asked ourselves: what if there was a way for management to easily track and update each employee’s qualifications and training? What if they could also use this information to perform strategic workforce planning and facilitate the upskilling of their employees?
This new feature provides you with key knowledge about your employees’ capabilities and enables you to update their qualifications for specific guidebooks. Adding to this, it also enables you to plan your manufacturing schedule and training requirements more efficiently.
Use the interactive list to determine who is best for specific tasks and who needs additional training. With more knowledge about your workforce, you are able to strengthen your business, your product, and the people that create value.
How It Works
The updated Training page is where the magic happens. When searching for a guidebook, you now have access to an interactive list that details who is trained, who is an expert, when they were trained, and who trained them.
This new feature is controlled by two toggle switches: Trained and Expert Mode Access.
Trained: The operator has access to the guidebook and is trained on the process. This enables you to confidently assign work orders to the right people.
Expert Mode Access: The operator has access to the guidebook in Expert Mode. This allows them to focus on key steps in a process and skip steps outlining the procedure for less experienced employees. It also helps you know which employees can facilitate training on this specific job.
Pro Tip: If training a large group, use the group function to qualify all personnel within that group.
Strategically Assign Work Orders
With an easy-to-read list that details worker qualifications, assigning the right work orders to the right employees is a breeze. All the information is located on one screen; no need to verify elsewhere. Simply search for the corresponding guidebook and see which of your operators is trained to perform that activity.
Now, you can hand out assignments with confidence and purpose.
Additionally, this interactive list conveniently shows who is not trained on any specific activity, which brings its own unique advantage. Using the interactive list, you have the ability to see if there is a lack of trained workers for any procedure. This information enables you to enact an effective cross-training plan that brings your workers up to speed on the jobs they need to know.
For these reasons and more, this new feature helps build a stronger and smarter workforce that is prepared, flexible, and confident. The Training page within our work instruction software is an easy way to keep track of qualifications, store knowledge, assign the right people to the right jobs, and train people to match the needs of the organization.
Pro Tip: Utilize your employees’ experience to your advantage. If you need an assembly to be done quickly and with experience, assign an operator with Expert Mode Access for that guidebook. Or, if you have time, continuously improve the skills of your workforce and assign workers that need more experience to reach Expert Level Access.
4 Uses Cases: Where Will This New Feature Be Most Useful?
As we’ve briefly discussed, this new feature provides various efficiency, productivity, and intelligence boosts for you and your employees. Updating and tracking workforce training is quick and efficient while employee assignments are purpose-driven.
The benefits of this new feature include:
Keep track of your employees’ training
- Track and update training for individuals and groups.
- Review when people were trained and who trained them.
Efficient workforce planning
- Leverage your employees’ skills to benefit your manufacturing schedule.
- Give experienced workers the jobs that need to be done quickly
Strategically upskill your workforce
- Identify and track your workforce’s capabilities. Use this knowledge to train and qualify more employees when required or purposefully give more experience to the employees that need it.
- Train employees individually or within a group. If training a group mark off the whole group with one click.
Let's explore these benefits with 4 use cases that outline the potential of this innovative update.
Use Case 1: Job Selection
It's a brand new Monday and your team lead is setting up the assembly jobs schedule. But certain work orders in the queue need operators to have specific training.
For good reason, only operators trained on those assemblies will be able to access those guidebooks. So your team lead will need to choose the right people with the right training and qualifications. Your team lead pulls up the guidebook on the Training page within VKS and obtains a list of all the people trained for that specific job.
But processes are not always so simple. At the moment, your facility is experiencing a period of high demand and the deadline is coming up fast. You need the job done quickly while maintaining your quality standards. In this case, it will be helpful to utilize the skills of your most experienced employees.
As we’ve shown, Expert Mode Access is indicated next to each person’s name. Getting experts to perform this job will lead to faster cycle times and will enable your team to meet the deadline. With this plan in mind, your team uses this workforce training knowledge to select expert employees for the job.
The assembly is then completed in record time. Your team lead has sped up manufacturing to match the current production requirements and your customers are satisfied.
Use Case 2: Cross-Training
It’s been an incredible week. Through strategic workforce planning, your team lead has found the right people for the right jobs. Efficiency is through the roof!
While going through and selecting qualified personnel for each job, your team lead notices that a majority of the assembly operators are not trained on a certain complex task. You catch wind of this discrepancy and realize that with all the time saved, you could spare some employees for additional training. You then search for the mentioned guidebook and select the employees you wish to train. On the same page, you see who is an expert and pair the trainers and trainees together.
Now, while experts perform a complex task, they can train their less experienced colleagues. Your workforce is stronger because you saw the potential and need for additional training.
Use Case 3: Maintenance
Now, suppose that there is a problem with one of the machines on your shop floor. Repairs will need to be made right away! Luckily, you remember that some of your operators are trained to provide maintenance for this very machine. You just need to know who.
So you go to the Training page in VKS and search for the corresponding machine maintenance guide books. Voila! You have a list of three personnel qualified to perform maintenance on that piece of equipment.
You select and call the closest employee and they begin to fix the issue. Finding the right people was quick and efficient and VKS will guide these employees through any complex maintenance procedures.
So now you have peace of mind knowing that the right people are performing the tasks while getting the right information at the right time.
Use Case 4: Workforce Training For a Group
You’ve just bought a brand new liquid paint booth that will speed up your painting process by 50%. You now need to train and orient your 30 painting employees on its functionalities. This requires a group training session.
To relay the information they need to know, you use an interactive VKS guidebook to train all your employees.
Success! Everyone is now qualified to use the new liquid paint booth.
The problem is marking off 30 people individually would be inefficient. You would have to update each person's “trained” toggle one by one. But with this new update, marking each person as trained can be cut down from 30 clicks to one click.
All your painting employees are already in a group of their own within VKS, like your assembly team, welding team, and so on. So instead, you select the group of workers labeled as ‘Paint Team” and mark off the whole group of 30 people with one click.
Visual Instructions, Efficient Training & Powerful Workers
This new feature represents an innovative step for workforce training and qualification tracking. Whether managing the shop floor or training employees, key knowledge about your workforce is at your fingertips.
By efficiently updating and tracking employee training, you can use your employees’ skills to the fullest, provide reliable access to guidebooks, and assign work orders with confidence. As we saw in the 4 use cases with visual work instructions, efficient training and key workforce knowledge helps you and your workers to be prepared and capable for any challenge.