Blended Learning Fuels Company Growth
||Inteva Products, LLC employs over 9,000 people in 18 countries focused on delivering high-value quality, on time and on budget. Inteva has global resources for engineering, manufacturing and customer service for Closure Systems, Interiors Systems, Motors and Electronics, and Roof Systems. Inteva is focused on sustained global growth, providing excellent customer service and being a best place to work for employees. The company is headquartered in Troy, Michigan.
To establish the desired corporate culture and quickly align management protocols and processes, a training and education program had to be launched; one that mirrored the new company’s lean and effective approach. An additional complication was due to the challenging economy, as the automotive industry made significant reductions, including training budgets which were largely ignored or cut significantly. The time to acknowledge the importance of professional development had arrived.
It was critical that the “new” workforce be indoctrinated into a new way of conducting business. Inteva management wanted to instill a sense of ownership, of personal responsibility and accountability that was sometimes lacking in manufacturing companies. It was also important to define boundaries with regard to workplace rules such as sexual harassment, violence in the workplace and proper interviewing techniques among many others. The intent was to ensure a consistent message from management, develop the skills and talent of managers and adhere to relevant laws and regulations.
The traditional approach typically required bringing in top management from the field for several days of intensive instructor-led training in a classroom. The demands of time away from the workplace and travel budgets were considerable. Inteva Products wanted to revisit what had been standard operating procedure at the previous firm, and their research led them to Learning Designs, Inc., a Michigan-based single-source provider of employee performance solutions.
Inteva Products and Learning Designs jointly developed a new approach to management training leveraging a concept called “blended learning”. Blended learning combines the benefits of traditional instructor-led training with eLearning. The eLearning modules were delivered and students were tracked via LatitudeLearning. What had been a three day session of classroom instruction was consolidated into several eLearning modules which could be taken at the individual’s convenience with only one day in the classroom. Managers and supervisors were now able to quickly become proficient with the basic policies and procedures of the company as well as knowledgeable about relevant laws and regulations concerning the workplace.
Learning Designs initially created the modules for their Human Resources department policies and procedures, such as dealing with sexual harassment and using appropriate hiring procedures. There were also optional modules to help improve individual professionalism with eLearning courses such as “How to conduct meetings more effectively”.
When other departments saw the reduced cost, improved effectiveness and employee’s enthusiasm in embracing the HR training, they soon wanted to transition to the blended learning model. The IT and Finance Departments were the first to transition. Inteva Products looks forward to introducing blended learning to its hourly workers, too. The initial 12-15 individual courses for HR training provided proof of the blended learning concept with verifiable time and money-saving results. The company now anticipates expanding the library of courses to 50-100 courses by year’s end.
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- Travel costs and time away from the workplace were reduced significantly
- Students were not able to register for required HR training until completing the preparatory eLearning modules
- Students arrived with questions already formed, fueling more productive dialogue
- eLearning modules assure that all staff receive the same, essential messaging important to the company
- LatitudeLearning tracks student progress and courses completed, ensuring a verifiable paper trail if needed
- Employees appreciate having the opportunity to improve skills and avail themselves to an upwardly mobile track for professional development
- Employees prefer the blended learning model, like the hybrid instruction approach and think it’s a more effective approach
- When Inteva Products doubled its staff, eLearning courses were quickly converted to teach supervisors and managers in new languages. In addition, localization of the courses accommodated differences in laws and regulations in each market