“Your team is only as strong as its weakest member”. Old wisdom, yes – but wisdom that still holds true today. A team’s worth is so much more than simply technical knowledge. Nowhere is this truer than in the property maintenance industry. Property and building maintenance teams must be able to work together efficiently, communicate effectively, and consistently deliver solid, high-quality results.
But how do you turn a group of maintenance technicians into a “dream team”? The answer is simple: prioritize training. A team reflects the quality of its training, meaning that a well-trained team will shine within the industry and earn you increased business and amazing reviews. The effort you put into training your technicians will be apparent as you experience long-term financial improvement.
With that being said, here’s how to effectively train your property maintenance team.
Develop a Solid Plan
Before unveiling your new training program, take some time to develop a plan. Ultimately, training should become an integral element of your business strategy. Just like with advertising and many other facets of running a successful business, a little planning now will save you a lot of time once you hit the implementation stage.
When you present a training plan to your property maintenance team, don’t forget to include clearly defined goals, rewards and incentives, and ways for them to mark their own progress. Examples can include certificates for completing lessons or modules or a team lunch to celebrate the completion of an intensive in the field week of training.
Questions to Answer
To help you get started, here are some questions you should ask yourself when developing a training strategy for your property maintenance team:
- How are new employees trained? New employees should start with a clear understanding of what will be required of them during the onboarding and training process.
- Will you offer ongoing training? A strong property maintenance team is one which undergoes regular “refresher courses” in order to practice existing skills and keep abreast of new industry trends and best practices.
- How often will employee training occur? Will it be once per year? Twice? Once per quarter? Make sure that team members are informed well in advance so that they can mark their calendars.
- What training is required? This question will form the “meat” of your training plan, as you identify key elements which will define your effective, highly successful property maintenance team
Once you’ve outlined the goals of your training program, it’s time to consider what tools you can use in order to achieve them.
Utilize Technology Where You Can
Gone are the days of forcing team members to sit through endless seminars or page through novel-thick instruction manuals. Take advantage of the many technological training tools available to you and your maintenance team for an easily repeatable and scalable training process. This will make training much more efficient and easier to organize while still conveying valuable knowledge. Not to mention, it will save you valuable time and resources.
Video & Audio
Nowadays, a massive amount of free audio and visual information is available online. Seek out instructional videos recorded by industry professionals or even create your own videos focused on specific elements related to your properties, and make them “required watching” for both new and longstanding team members.
Software & Apps
Online courses, software, and smartphone apps are a great way for team members to take an active role in their own training. These frequently come with self-tests and other knowledge checks which employees can take pride in passing. Some even award certificates or “badges” for excellent performance.
Encourage team members who want to continue their education. Study.com and the National Apartment Association maintain a constantly expanding database of technical colleges and universities which offer property maintenance courses – you could make these and other accessible resources available to all employees.
3D simulations and virtual reality (VR) is truly the training tool of the future. Especially for property maintenance teams. Immersive three-dimensional technology is used to create lifelike, interactive simulations where facilities maintenance techs can test their skills in a “hands-on” way without taking up valuable time or equipment.
Audial, visual and kinesthetic learners alike can interact with the material in a way that benefits their preferred educational style. Plus, key skills such as crisis management and risk assessment can be tested outside of actual dangerous, high-stress situations.
Leading the way into the 3D simulation future is Interplay Learning, a revolutionary training software for property maintenance technicians that incorporates elements of all the tools and methods discussed above.
The Ultimate Training Software
Interplay Learning has everything you need to train your building maintenance team. Choose from professionally-hosted and narrated videos, in-depth courses ranging from introductory to advanced, and Interplay’s signature – highly-interactive, 3-D simulations and virtual reality technology.
Described by satisfied customers as “authentic” and “a totally unique way to learn by doing,” Interplay Learning brings property maintenance teams together via the most effective training techniques, both old and new. Choose between specific courses, like HVAC and electrical, as you engage with over 100 hours of real-world, scenario-based content. Plus, test your progress with helpful knowledge checks as you go along.
Your fully-realized, highly-trained, property maintenance “dream team” awaits.