Why is verification of competency important?
Competence is a measure of an employee’s proven skills and knowledge. Many workplaces require employees to be verified as competent at performing their tasks before they can work. This is especially important for high risk work, such as operating machinery or dealing with hazardous chemicals.
Recognition of prior learning (RPL) involves assessing an employee’s skills and experience based on formal training and work experience undertaken prior to their current role. A statement of attainment or a nationally-recognised qualification are examples of proof of prior learning.
While recognising prior learning is common, it is important to also consider recognition of employees’ current competency, which is often a recurring process.
This involves reassessing employees at industry-required or best practice intervals, such as an annual reassessment, to ensure that they are still competent at performing their duties.
Reassessment may involve the employee demonstrating their can complete a specific task correctly and safely while under supervision, or through written theoretical assessment.
Lastly, training and development programs can also be used to assess competence. This is done through online training software and is useful for re-assessment and verifying employee competence remotely.
Simple. Central. Effective. The Rise of LMS
Verification of competence is a necessary requirement for employers to implement and employees to undergo. As workplace safety is ever-increasingly scrutinised and enforced, it has become critical for businesses to ensure that their staff comply with competence requirements.
These verification requirements have paved the way for a new generation of training and induction software.
A Learning Management System, or LMS, is a type software that serves as a platform for instructors and managers to deliver, manage and track employee training.
While LMS technology itself isn’t new, its simplicity and versatility have driven it to the forefront of compliance and induction-reliant industries.
The benefits of an LMS over makeshift training methods include:
- The ability to manage any number of users from one central online portal
- Create, assign and deliver multimedia training course content to all users
- Deliver compliance training around the clock, quickly and cost-effectively
- Use assessment questions to test user competence and understanding
- Assign completion certificates to users upon completion of a course
- Create and assign training events, schedule course re-induction and create training groups
- Generate reports to monitor staff completion of training content
Let’s take a closer look at some of the tangible benefits an LMS can provide:
Everything you need in one place
No longer must training videos and manuals be transferred between computers and USB sticks or via email. Using an LMS, all your eLearning content is stored securely on the LMS database.
This also promotes consistency with training content. Your nation-wide, or even global company won’t miss a single branch or site with a centralised LMS. The same training content is available to all users, everywhere.
Access content anytime, anywhere, and by anyone
Once your course content has been published on the LMS, all employees assigned to that material will have unlimited access, at any time, from any location or device. No need to schedule training sessions – users can just log in and learn in their own time.
This means no need for instructor travel, training site hiring, waiting periods or printing costs for the 600 training documents you need to disperse.
Help employees learn quickly and independently
Another major benefit of LMS training is the flexibility it gives your learners. Busy schedules are no barrier for compliance training and verification of competency. Users can complete training courses in their own time and at their own rate – with deadlines set by their managers.
This means LMS-style learning caters to employees’ individual preferred learning styles. Tackle one course section per day or three courses in one go – learners can suit themselves.
This highly organised system also encourages faster and more effective learning. Interactive course elements, quizzes and take-home content can increase learner engagement. An engaged learner will retain more information, which may be critical to safety once that knowledge is needed on the job.
No more wasted time and attention span with hours-long training videos – learners can work through the content at their own pace. They can also return to a course at a later stage to reinforce their understanding of the content.
Track employee training
Notifications, training records and reports allow managers to monitor and track learner progress. This facilitates convenient performance management as managers can see how quickly learners are progressing and if or where they may need assistance or additional training material.
For example, managers can set the LMS to notify them if a learner has failed a training course assessment several times. Through reports and other analytics tools, the manager can see if other learners are struggling with that course and determine whether the training content needs to be modified.
Strict compliance with industry safety and competence standards is necessary in a range of industries. This doesn’t have to be a difficult process to manage across a variety of staff.
Managers can set news alerts on the LMS with information regarding inevitable updates to compliance laws. This means quick and easy information sharing and that your staff will be kept in-the-know about their compliance responsibilities.
Another bonus is training reminders. Set intervals for Recognition of Current Competency or re-induction training to keep learners up to date.
Cut your training costs
Assessing competence and delivering compliance training is a necessary burden on a business’ budget. Expensive and elaborate training programs, however, are usually not. Some of the ways an LMS can save on training costs include:
- No need for travel and accommodation for instructors or learners
- No need to hire industry experts to deliver face-to-face training content
- No need to hire work sites to conduct training exercises
- No need to print training documents
While these savings might seem minor in the greater scheme of things, it frees up room in your Learning and Development budget to allocate more funds to things that really matter for your employees.
An LMS might not suit all businesses and industries. Some jobs will always require on-the-job training to ensure safety compliance.
But with the dynamic role Learning Management Systems have in managing compliance and verification of competency, it’s worth considering whether an LMS could save your business time, effort, money and ensure that your employees are engaged by training content.
If you’d like to learn to learn more about LMS or are interested in implementing an LMS for your business, please contact us at Mediasphere to see if our award-winning LMS can help optimise your training today.
- Chaffe, S. (2016). How A Learning Management System Benefits Your Organization. eLearning Industry. Retrieved from: https://elearningindustry.com/learning-management-system-benefits-organization
- Department of Mines and Petroleum. (n.d.). What is competency and how is it assessed? Government of Western Australia. Retrieved from http://www.dmp.wa.gov.au/Safety/What-is-competency-and-how-is-it-5973.aspx
- Pappas, C. (2016). The Top 8 Benefits of Using Learning Management Systems. eLearning Industry. Retrieved from: https://elearningindustry.com/top-8-benefits-of-using-learning-management-systems
- Prosafe. (n.d.). Verification of Competency. Retrieved from http://www.prosafe.org.au/verification_of_competency
- Selinger, M. (2015). Competency: Prove to me you can do it, safely. Health and Safety Handbook. Retrieved from: http://www.healthandsafetyhandbook.com.au/competency-prove-to-me-you-can-do-it-safely/