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Driving Training Adoption in the Trades

February 06, 2020

Last Updated: November 24, 2020

by Interplay Learning

In skilled trades careers, ongoing learning and training is important to not only keep technicians of many industries knowledgeable, but also to avoid one of the biggest challenges that the industry faces today — the costly effects of workforce turnover. Losing just one worker can have a huge impact on your business.

While offering state-of-the-art training solutions to your teams, like Interplay Learning’s SkillMill™ Learning experience platform, can help to solve this problem, there may be pushback internally stemming from concerns of cost, usage, and effectiveness.

Here are a couple ways you can drive training adoption from your team and get the best return on your investment.

Offer an Innovative Training Method Your Team Will Want to Use

The best thing you can do to drive training adoption from your team is to invest in a training solution that you know your technicians will actually use. Finding methods of training that spur interest and keep employees engaged is a challenge for most HVAC, multi-family maintenance, solar, plumbing, and electrical businesses. That’s why many turn to Interplay Learning. Their next-generation methods go way beyond textbooks and classrooms, like gamification of training and virtual reality courses that keep technicians continuously motivated to train and learn.

Training Gamification with Incentives and Rewards

What if you could transform the way you train your techs into a competitive game? Chances are, they’d be much more motivated to up their skills. That’s exactly what gamification is all about. Just like a video game, gamification takes HVAC and facilities maintenance training completely online and designates points for completing different “levels” to improve their knowledge and skills. With Interplay Learning, your teams can utilize this kind of point system to set and achieve goals, compete with each other through a weekly leaderboard, and even be rewarded for their hard work.

Point System and Goal Setting
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With the overall goal to keep your techs engaged and motivated in their training efforts, Interplay Learning uses an effective points system. Participants can accumulate points by doing things like:

  • Watching training videos
  • Successfully competing simulations
  • Passing knowledge checks

In addition to scoring points, you can set point goals for your teams to hit on a weekly or monthly basis. As they finish their training tasks, they can see their progress relative to their set goals.

Weekly Leaderboard
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In conjunction with the points system, Interplay Learning also utilizes a weekly leaderboard to encourage a healthy, competitive training environment. There’s nothing like a little competition to spur training participation among your techs. Everyone participating wants to be in the top spot.

Incentivize Training with Prizes

To encourage participation even further, you can consider offering rewards or incentives for technicians who earn a specific amount of points or top the leaderboard on a weekly or monthly basis. Not only does this add even more motivation to enhance techs’s skills with continued training, but it improves your return on investment. The more time your techs spend training, the better they become at their job, which leads to improved company growth.

Some great rewards or incentives may be something like:
  • An Amazon or Walmart gift card
  • Lunch on the company
  • A bump in hourly pay (especially for newer/green technicians)
  • Training/game performance figured into year-end review

Virtual Reality (VR) Training

Alongside gamification, virtual reality (VR) is also an innovative approach to skilled trades training including that will pique your techs interest and spur participation. Not only is it fun (considering it’s like playing a video game), but it creates an environment where a student can make mistakes or test new industry advances safely without the risk of having things go wrong in the field.

Interplay Learning’s VR courses are completely immersive, taking the student into that simulated world and giving them valuable hands-on experience. Additionally, these courses are complete with gamification components, how-to videos, and quizzes to make sure fully comprehend the material.

Express Why Ongoing Training Is Important

Offering an innovative training method that your techs will actually have an interest in using definitely helps to drive training adoption, but it may not be as effective if your organization doesn’t fully understand the importance of ongoing training.

Every tech, whether new to the industry or a seasoned vet, needs a refresher on the basics, as well as training to keep up with advances in the field. A survey conducted by the Bureau of Census found that by increasing a person’s education by 10% increases their productivity by 8.6%. Through continued education and training, you can develop a strong team of skilled workers and also reduce costly turnover within your multi-family maintenance business.

Develop a Strong Team of Skilled Workers

There are a number of obstacles that companies face when building their dream team of skilled workers, including relying on third party assistance and trying to find the already limited amount of existing skilled trade workers. By hiring passionate and driven workers and training them from the bottom up, through continued education programs like Interplay Learning, you can side-step these problems altogether.

To fully develop a well-rounded team of maintenance technicians, you’ll want to note that skill development encourages long-term careers which leads to career satisfaction and lower employee turnover rates.

Reduce Costly Turnover

In addition to developing a solid team of techs, ongoing training also helps to reduce turnover. Maintenance technician turnover reached a staggering 20% in 2018, 4% above the national average. And this type of turnover is costly and disruptive. In fact, replacing an employee costs an average of $15,000 and takes 42 days, likely meaning you’ll see a dip in service as you get new employees up-to-speed.

With ongoing training, you can develop the skills of your workforce efficiently and effectively, which means they’re more likely to stay. Matter of fact, 34% of workers are more likely to stay at their job if they enjoy their work and can develop their career.

Make Training Adoption Easier with SkillMill™

Driving training adoption within your organization can be challenging at times, as some may be concerned about the cost, usage, and effectiveness with techs. With new and innovative ways to train — through gamification, virtual reality (VR) courses, and more — Interplay Learning’s SkillMill™ learning platform can help.

Whether your business’s specialty is HVAC, facilities maintenance, electrical, plumbing, or even solar, there’s a suite of Interplay Learning courses for your team that'll give you the best return on your investment.

 

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