10 practical and easily implementable tips
Cost and time are big factors when training workforces and addressing compliance needs in the mining industry. eLearning allows mining companies to streamline their training programmes, keep track of all types of training, and measure skills gaps. The mining industry in South Africa has to contend with uncertainty due to the Covid-19 pandemic and budgets that have been cut. However, there are also opportunities for the sector.
Here are 10 tips that can be easily implemented and help impact the mining sector in a positive manner:
Budget cuts are not new in the mining sector. South Africa saw a dip in mineral prices since 2019 and the county’s overall economic activity for the entire year decreased by 7,0% in 2020 compared to 2019. One place that budgets can be cut is by introducing a more efficient eLearning platform. This, in turn, can remove the cost of flights, car hire, accommodation, training room hire and instructor fees.
eLearning is not only about training itself, but also streamlining those processes in a mining company’s administration process that were normally done manually for training. Through an internet-based Learning Management System (LMS) licensed to a mining company, training material can be easily kept, adapted and updated on one platform.
Learner management systems give mining companies the ability to ensure that all departments are using the correct training materials and removes irregularities – many of which previously occurred when relying on manual training interventions. Many mining companies have branches around South Africa and globally, and LMS’s can ensure consistency.
4. Safety, health, environment and quality (SHEQ) standards.
The mining sector has to adhere to very strict SHEQ standards and Covid-19 has also impacted these measures. More than 245 pieces of legislation impact on health and safety, and using an efficient eLearning company can help to make this process more cost-effective and keep the topic top of mind among staff. Training forms a crucial component of preventing accidents and ensuring that people can identify risks and know how to navigate them so that they can work safely.
5. eLearning allows more engagement
eLearning has added far more interactive and engaging methods to learning. These help staff to absorb more and enjoy the learning process. Modules can contain a variety of media rich activities including videos, graphics and simulations that help get the message across and allow the learners to stay focussed. eLearning can also be developed to allow staff to learn at their own pace, which could previously be a challenge if staff had to attend classes at a given date and time.
6. Upskilling the mining sector
The local mining sector employs an estimated 460 000 people, yet 86% of these employees have very little formal education. eLearning can play a huge role in elevating skills and making topics like SHEQ more accessible and manageable. Giving both managers and miners eLearning modules that can be easily learnt and provide information in an easy and fun way ensures that staff can excel and upskill to be more compliant and efficient.
Every mining company has its own specific needs and budget for eLearning. What makes eLearning so versatile is that it can fit the exact needs for that business. eLearning therefore brings adaptability to a momentous task that was previously time-consuming and costly.
8. Time Saving
Training used to take staff off site to complete the necessary courses. This would result in lost production time. eLearning modules can be accessed at any time – freeing staff up to work more efficiently and not lose valuable hours travelling and being off site. This improves productivity.
It’s critical throughout an eLearning programme that employers are able to gain insight into some of the challenges and successes that trainees are experiencing, and to address those issues. An LMS provides real-time on-demand reports of learners’ activity, such as their completion times, how many times they’ve clicked a specific page, to what degree they’ve answered questions, their peak times for visiting the training programme, which types of questions or sections of the programme have yielded the greatest responses and show insight into knowledge gaps.
Building a long-term relationship with an accredited eLearning provider can ensure that you have a partner to help keep your costs at a minimum and adapt them when needed with LMS. The mining industry is very volatile, with prices of minerals constantly changing. eLearning is a cost-effective solution and a credible partner can help you on the unpredictable road of efficiency.