Inductions – how long should they be?
A good question to ask yourself to answer this question “how long does my induction need to be” would be what information do I need to share with the person completing the induction. What safety information should every visitor know?
I have seen a 1 minute visitor induction a 21 minute visitor induction a 5 minute contractor induction and a 4 hour contractor induction. Some inductions are so long they can go over several days. How long should your induction be?
I often hear “2 years” as the answer to my question how frequently should an induction be renewed? 2 years….really….do you think we can remember information from 18 months to 2 years ago?
What if you could break your induction down into 2 categories and then deliver the information more frequently?
Category 1 – information you must give the person completing the induction that is mostly of general knowledge and less location specific like a corporate drug and alcohol policy, company video.
Category 2 – information that is very site specific like the evacuation points, on site issues today.
Inductions would have much more effect I believe if we deliver less in the first category and more in the second. How could this work?
You can still have your detailed corporate induction I am simply suggesting taking some of the information out of this main induction that is location specific and more focused on location specific health and safety information and moving this data into an onsite location specific induction that can be completed daily, weekly, monthly quarterly 6 monthly or annually. Completing an induction more frequently will assist the inductee (learner) to remember faster your location specific information.
Breaking the induction down for locations gives you the ability to shorten the longer induction while delivering the most important information more frequently at the location level. I see many companies today create a national induction that must be completed by all persons attending any location nationally while a shorter site specific induction is delivered at the specific location the person is going to work. With today’s technology this is the best model.
I remember an induction recently where the customer had an induction for 8 locations all geographically based within a couple of hundred miles of each other. While it was possible for a worker to work across multiple locations it was mostly unlikely that this would occur, every contractor had to complete this 4 hour induction starting work, the 4 hour induction included a site map for all 8 locations site specific information for each location, how can you possibly retain the information of 8 site maps months before you even attend one of the locations, we all know it is just not possible. This customer would do better to have a company induction that must be completed as well as a location specific induction that is completed at the time a person arrives on site to complete the work, Why would you put people through an induction for a location they will never attend?
The solution is to shorten the longer induction and create a location based site specific induction that a person can complete on arrival to the site, this way we can deliver the location evacuation site map to the person during the location specific induction only minutes before they actually attend the location to work.
Location based inductions are normally much shorter than larger corporate company wide inductions, location based inductions are very specific to the location and generally include very current health and safety information. You can manage location based inductions centrally or locally at each location.
Time to update your visitor and contractor induction? What about employees?