How our customers are helping in the fight against Covid-19

How our customers are helping in the fight against Covid-19

During his remarks on Sunday March 29th, 2020, President Trump mentioned a few companies that have joined the fight against Covid-19 https://youtu.be/uzLltEvTRVE?t=2440 His remarks in previous days similarly mentioned companies that have joined the effort to supply medical equipment, masks, etc. We thank these companies and the many others not mentioned so far for making a difference

I was proud to know that 60% of the companies mentioned so far by the President use Simutech’s Training System to train maintenance personnel to keep the lines moving and the buildings operational. While we are not directly involved in the fight, we are proud to be partnered with these great companies.

We want to pay it forward and join the fight, to all the companies involved in the effort to supply hospitals with product they need, please contact us at info [@] simutechmultimedia.com and we will make our training system available to your teams at no cost while the Covid-19 fight is on. Hopefully this will help your teams troubleshoot faster, reduce stress, and insure minimal interruptions in the supply chain.

We thank you for your effort and hope to hear from you.

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How to continue recruiting during the Coronavirus Outbreak

How to continue recruiting during the Coronavirus Outbreak

Due to the ongoing COVID-19 crisis, many companies have made changes to go completely virtual. However, hiring for essential positions can’t stop just because you’re not physically in the office.

If your company is looking to fill positions right now, here’s a list of tools that can help you to successfully adapt your recruiting process.

1. Social Media

Social media is a great tool that you can use to find your workforce among, particularly among younger generations. As with any online business, you can use social media to:

  • Notify people of training opportunities, and to obtain feedback.
  • Highlight employee testimonials about your company.
  • Promote company news and initiatives.
  • Target key audiences and join relevant communities.

2. Innovative technologies

Use internet-based recruiting like job posting sites and apps to attract individuals to the company. Many job-seekers, especially younger ones, almost exclusively search for jobs using the internet. It’s important to keep in mind that job posts should be mobile-friendly, as Millennials are likely to use their smartphones when job searching.

3. Virtual interviews

As face-to-face interactions continue to be impossible under the current situation, interviewing prospective employees with virtual interviews is the new way forward. There are many tools available to conduct a virtual interview, such as Zoom, Google Hangouts, Skype, and others. Virtual interviews are a step down from an in-person interview, but they’re still a great tool to be able to gauge the candidate’s interest and fit for a company in a conversational environment.

4. English tests

Forbes reported that over 30% of people working in manufacturing companies are immigrants, so you may want to consider an online English quiz to test their speaking, writing, and reading comprehension skills. The English Quiz is one platform that helps you to evaluate the oral and written competency of candidates in the English language.

5. Skill tests

This is one of the hardest elements to test in an online recruitment. In the manufacturing industry it is crucial to ensure your prospective employees are experts in troubleshooting electrical circuits. Simutech Multimedia offers a solution to support this process. You can use our custom test tool to easily create assessments for your interview candidates.

If you’re interested in learning more about how Simutech can help you, feel free to contact us for more information.

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3 Steps to Creating An Effective Manufacturing Training Program

3 Steps to Creating An Effective Manufacturing Training Program

If you want to help your manufacturing staff develop new skills and acquire new knowledge, you need to have a manufacturing training program. An effective training program not only enables you to save time with training, but it also leads to a measurable impact on your manufacturing plant’s safety, revenue, and profitability.

The good news is that the entire process of creating a training program can be broken down into simple three simple steps. Before you know it, your employees will have better skills and so will your manufacturing trainers — so be sure to put this information into action at your manufacturing facility. 

Step 1. Determine objectives

The first step towards creating a training program is to perform an analysis to determine your training needs. Start by looking at your company’s goals to help you decide on which training programs you need to implement. By aligning your training program with overall company goals, your workforce will be able to meet your objectives while benefiting from increased skills and knowledge.

You can also look at job requirements for open positions and use that as a basis for your training program. For example, when hiring maintenance staff, you can develop a training program that specifically addresses troubleshooting skills related to working with PLCs or control circuits. 

Looking at government regulations, HR requirements, and other legal obligations can also help figure out what needs to be added to your training program. Currently, a lot of manufacturers have to readjust their training programs to adapt to remote working. So if you anticipate that your manufacturing staff will be working from home, then now is a good time to refresh your training program.

Step 2 Create a training action plan

Once you’ve determined the objectives of your training program, the next step is to start putting your plan into action. Ask yourself the following questions: 

  • What are the best training methods for achieving my objectives?
  • What knowledge does my team need to have before they can complete the training program?    
  • What kinds of activities can I incorporate into the training program to help learners accomplish each objective?

Consider the level of learning and learning styles needed to deliver your training material effectively. You can always launch a pilot training program to collect feedback from users and see what areas you need to improve.

Using a training simulation system like Simutech Multimedia can also make managing your training programs a lot easier. You can use our platform to test your manufacturing staff on several electrical troubleshooting skills they’ll be using on the job. Plus, you’ll also be able to track their performance in real-time.

Step 3 Implement and measure

The last step is where your training action plan and objectives come to life. During this stage of your training program’s development, you should schedule the training activities and resources needed to deliver your training program.

When your training program is officially launched, announce it to your staff so you can start collecting data on their progress. Based on their performance, you’ll be able to accurately tell whether your training program is effective or if changes need to be made.

For more information about how Simutech Multimedia can help you deliver a better training program, contact us today. 

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How our customers are helping in the fight against Covid-19

Training Commitment Letter

A couple of years ago, one of our customers had the idea of creating something called a Training commitment letter.

At the time, I had never heard of such a thing. When I asked him to describe what he would want it to look like, he explained that he wanted something that he and his employees could sign, which would show their commitment to training. 

For himself, that he would commit the investment, the time, and the support. For his employees, that they would complete the training allocated on time when assigned. 

With that, the Training Commitment Form was born. It feels timely these days given the number of employees working from home and the added opportunity to spend time training online while working from home.

That’s why we’ve decided to make this letter available for download here and we hope you make great use of it for your teams now and into the future. It’s a great opportunity to document the commitment for training. 

Feel free to share this with your teams or modify it for your own training purposes. 

– Samer Forzley

CEO, Simutech Multimedia

Download the Training Commitment Letter

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How to Train Gen Z Employees: A Guide for Manufacturers

How to Train Gen Z Employees: A Guide for Manufacturers

Research shows that Gen Z will make up about three-quarters of the workforce by 2025. Born between the 1990s to mid-2000s, they are the first generation to grow up in an entirely digital world where social media, texting, Youtube, and apps are the norm. 

In this post, we’ll cover everything you need to know about Gen Z and give you tips on how to develop an effective manufacturing training program that enables them to thrive in the workplace.

Gen Z Core Values

It’s easy to think of Gen Z as “younger millennials,” but they are unlike any generation that has come before. For one, they’ve never known a world where the internet didn’t exist. 

They grew up using the internet as a tool for socializing, learning, and working. And as a result, prefer jobs where they get to use as much technology as possible. 

A study by Deloitte also discovered the following facts about Gen Z:

  • Career Development: Gen Z is loyal to companies that offer the safety of stable employment as well as diverse and entrepreneurial opportunities.
  • Working Styles: Gen Z has a preference for independence, even when working on team-based activities.
  • Core Value: Gen Z prioritize financial security over “personal fulfillment.”
  • Behavior & Character: Gen Z’s attachment to social media has real implications on how they interact and want to be perceived.

What all this means for manufacturers is that many of the old ways of doing things won’t work when it comes to training Gen Z. Studies show that by 2028 the current manufacturing skills gap may leave an estimated 2.4 million positions unfilled, with a potential economic impact of 2.5 trillion. The only way manufacturers can close this gap is by developing innovative ways to train the next generation of manufacturing talent.

Engage Gen Z using simulation training

Adopting a training program centered around mixed media and visually-stimulating content is the first step to training Gen Z workers. Remember, this generation grew up with the internet, spending most of their time on social media, video games, and learning through a variety of media types. 

As a result, your training program needs to reflect what’s innate to them. One of the most effective training methods is to use simulation training. Here are a few reasons why simulations are an excellent solution for manufacturers:

  • Immersion: Simulation training allows students to learn by doing in an immersive, safe environment. They can practice a wide range of manufacturing and troubleshooting skills without the risk of injury.  
  • Real-time feedback: With simulation training, Gen Z workers can get real-time feedback into their performance. They can quickly see what areas need to be improved, which leads to increased job performance.  
  • Gamification:  Simulations borrow a lot of concepts from gaming, such as 3D environments, scoreboards, and increasing difficulty. All of this increases knowledge retention while delivering a fun learning experience.  

If you’re interested in learning how simulation training can help you train the next generation of workers, be sure to contact us for more information on Simutech Multimedia’s training platform.

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The cost of not training – especially in a time of crisis

The cost of not training – especially in a time of crisis

A common question we get asked is what is the Return On Investment (ROI) for your training, or any training for that matter? It is a fair question, as we understand that all companies want to get value for their money. Today, I wanted to address the other side of this — the cost of not training someone, especially in a time of crisis. Recruiting, staff satisfaction, and staff retention are all variables that are affected by the hidden costs of not training.

The data shared by industry experts is overwhelmingly in favor of comprehensive training. For example, at a time when manufacturing is trying to attract the next generation of skilled labor, the data suggests that the opportunity for promotions, which comes with expanded training programs, and training itself, are top of mind for Millenials.

  • 35% of millennials consider comprehensive training and development programs as the top benefit they would want from a company.
  • Employees who feel they cannot develop in the company and fulfill their career goals are 12 times more likely to leave the company.
  • Companies that invest $1,500 on training per employee can see an average of 24% more profit than companies who invest less.
  • In a study of more than 3,100 US workplaces, a 10% increase in educational development produced a 6% gain in productivity.

With that in mind, let us now consider the cost of replacing staff if they leave. According to industry data, “training and retaining current employees is cheaper than hiring new ones. Hiring someone can cost up to 30% of the job’s salary which for an employee that makes $40,000 a year equals $12,000 to hire someone new.” 

This makes the argument for investing in learning compelling, especially in manufacturing when there is a high turnover rate, high recruiting costs, and a lengthy onboarding process. Each $1000 not spent on training has a potential cost of twelve times that amount, as measured by loss of productivity and staff replacement issues.

During the current pandemic, our customers are either in full production mode or have sent workers home. In either case, now more than ever the cost of not training is much higher than training.

It’s important to remember though, that not all training is created equally. One time training is not sufficient, and when a learned skill is not in use regularly, it errores quickly. We know for a fact that our learning decreases significantly when we are not using our skills.  Studies show that  we forget as much as 60% of what we learn after 48 hours. That means the forgetting curve wastes 60% of your training budget when training is not reinforced. Now imagine what that curve looks like in an extended lock down situation. 

Training from home

It is imperative that staff be constantly trained especially during a stay at home mandate, so that when they are ready to go back, they are productive and working efficiently and safely. Using a simulation-based training program like the Simutech Training System lets staff retain 90% of what is learned and can be done from home, it will ensure that staff is ready to go back to work and practice good work habits such as Lock out/Tag out.

The true cost of not training workers, which includes personal injuries, damaged equipment, poor product and low customer satisfaction. We can break that down even further though: 

  • The average occupational injury costs employers $36,500
  • U.S. employers pay about $1 Billion in workers compensation expenses each week
  • The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics states that a good worker safety and health program can save $4 to $6 dollars for every $1 dollar of investment.
  • The cost of medical attention for staff because of injuries sustained from unskilled use of equipment and supplies;
  • Compensation to customers for defective products;
  • The cost of defending the company against lawsuits from employees who feel their injury was the result of inadequate training, from outsiders injured while visiting the company, or from consumers who purchased faulty products.

Even one of these costs far exceeds the cost of purchasing training upfront. That’s why we recommend that you do the following:

  1. Now is the time to make sure training is in place, make sure staff that is working hard gets training time immediately after this crunch is over.
  2. Be sure you schedule training for staff who are at home.
  3. Use online-based Simulation training to give your team real hands on practical experience.
  4. Maintain constant check-in and review training data with your team.
  5. Make sure you use training programs to assess staff and their skill retention before they go back to work.

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