Home' MHD Supply Chain Solutions : MHD Spt-Oct 2014 Contents 12
roviding workers in the logistics and
supply chain management industry
with the tools and skills they need for
their job, whether it is learning, training or
instructing, remains critical to an organisation’s
success. But while learning is still necessary,
it’s time to rethink our conventional approaches,
particularly when more efficient and effective
Transport and logistics is a busy industry, with
the majority of workers being geographically
spread rather than sitting in one central
office. With a range of suppliers, managers,
supervisors, distribution centres, warehouse
workers and more, and with the constant
updates and changes made to legislation and
OH&S policies, providing traditional classroom
training is not feasible or effective.
What does this mean for the expected shelf
life of traditional classroom training, or even
modern e-learning content? Much like the
proverbial new car that loses value as soon
as it’s driven off the lot, the piles of oversized
courses produced by HR teams may start losing
value upon publication. Volumes of dense, static
learning content are increasingly out of touch in
the modern, real-time, big-data enterprise where
technology and innovation changes the way we
work on a daily basis.
These changes can drive efficiency, but
they’re only as good as the person using it. With
poor training and learning programs in place,
employees will not get the most out of those
innovations. The following are just a few ways
traditional learning programs can go wrong:
Poor reaction to lengthy
courses that divert employees
from meaningful work
Most of a worker’s knowledge is learned on
the job: when you’re working, you’re learning.
If you are providing employees with training
that is inaccessible, they may start to wonder:
“What am I accomplishing?” And when training
takes these employees away from their jobs, the
senior management may wonder: “What am I
getting?” or “Is this really meaningful?”
Inability to absorb the intended
knowledge when complex
information is delivered en masse
Our brains simply aren’t wired for it. Studies by
psychologists George A. Miller, Nelson Cowan
and others suggest that there are limits to
human cognition – there’s only so much our
brains can absorb at any given time. Delivering
oversized courses runs counter to how we learn.
Failure to apply learning when
the lessons aren’t relevant to
employees and their job
This is particularly true for a busy industry like
logistics. Management must understand and
meet the needs of supervisors, mangers, factory
workers, suppliers and more - one size doesn’t
fit all. Making a course ‘comprehensive’ by
adding more content means more hours away
from the job, and more information for the
learner’s brain to try (and fail) to absorb.
Organisations can’t realise a return on their
learning investment if the participants don’t benefit
Keeping pace with the latest and greatest
information is hard enough. Legislation, health
and safety, and staff welfare regulations are con-
stantly being updated, which means a constant
stream of new information for employees. We
make the job harder (and more expensive)
when we create massive libraries of learning
courses that fail to deliver for our workers.
So, what does a healthy learning diet look like?
Not surprisingly, the answer is smaller portions.
Rather than designing your next multi-hour
course, consider creating several smaller
‘learning snacks’ instead. Richard E. Mayer and
Ruth C. Clark call this the ‘segmenting principle’
in their book e-Learning and the Science
of Instruction. These smaller portions are
essentially mini-lessons that focus on one or two
key concepts, absorbing complex information
into smaller portions, allowing your employees
to become more flexible – a fundamental
requirement of an employee working in logistics.
When the learning events are smaller and
shorter, workers feel a sense of accomplishment
and progress more often. According to research
from Teresa M. Amabile and Steven J. Kramer
in their book The Progress Principle, the more a
worker experiences this sense of progress, the
more likely they are to be productive.
When it’s necessary to convey several
concepts in a larger context, simply string the
‘learning snacks’ together into a sequential
campaign. The small lessons are delivered
one at a time over a set time period to meet a
broader learning goal.
There are also benefits for your HR team, too.
When you’re no longer burdened with designing
and creating large multi-hour courses, your team
can become more agile. Focus a small lesson
on a key concept to spend less time creating
the content, and reduce the amount of ‘scrap’
learning from large courses never consumed.
By embracing a healthy diet of smaller
learning portions, you’ll achieve a more efficient
and effective learning approach that’s in-step
with today’s rapid and agile enterprise – where
it’s vital to get the right information, to the right
people, at the right time.
Dave Lingg is the vice president of
technology integration for ANCILE Solutions.
He works directly with the company’s partners
to enhance the value of their applications
with seamlessly integrated performance
support, learning, and mobile corporate
communications solutions from ANCILE.
Creating Logistics Results
02 9486 5555
Modular, scalable, flexible GTP solution
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Less than 3-year ROI
Another logistics result.
Wholesalers and retailers are being challenged by a
lack of a reliable, available workforce, increasing wage
costs and business uncertainty. Traditionally, the ROI
on Goods-to-Person was not compelling for small
and medium-sized operations. Enter Dematic’s new,
Modular GTP system - a flexible, off-the-shelf picking
solution that can be scaled up or down as your business
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business grows, Modular GTP can be expanded to meet
your future needs. That’s what we call a logistics result.
Logistics Solutions | Storage Solutions | Software & IT | Voice Picking | Wireless Networks | Service & Support | Conveyors | AS/RS
BITE-SIZE LEARNING MARKS THE
ROAD TO WORKFORCE EFFICIENCY
MHD SUPPLY CHAIN SOLUTIONS — SEPTEMBER / OCTOBER 2014
MHD Sep-Oct 2014 8-17.indd 12
5/09/2014 2:56 pm
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