From delivery drivers to utility workers to maintenance and repair technicians, the jobs of firstline workers are essential to keeping the economy functioning during critical times like these. This workforce is often overlooked, but times of crisis shine a spotlight on how dependent everyone is on what these people do. Unlike many other professionals who have the tools and technology to work from home, firstline workers don’t have that luxury.
During times of crisis, companies must both communicate action plans and institute new processes for the safety of their employees and customers. Keeping mobile workers informed, protected and trained presents a unique problem that employers must be prepared for. For companies with large firstline workforces, this is especially true and complex. They must ensure they are delivering effective remote communication and training to keep these workers connected and supported as much as possible. In uncertain times and rapidly changing environments, firstline workforces face the following challenges:
- Firstline workers may need to review emergency preparedness processes that were taught to them during initial training but may have long since been forgotten.
- Newly instituted protocols will need to be implemented quickly and efficiently to bolster safety measures.
- If staffing and responsibilities need to shift to address changing operational requirements, workers will need to be trained rapidly and remotely.
Effective training delivery can help ease the concerns of companies and help the mobile workforce operate as efficiently as possible. Companies should be instituting training and support programs for firstline workers that include the following attributes:
On-demand mobile learning- For mobile workers in times like these, training onsite is not an option as it will be difficult, if not impossible, to execute. Training that can be delivered on the devices that employees already use for their day-to-day work is vital to ensure your workforce attains the necessary information.
Micro-learning- Quick and digestible training that can be used to inform your team of the safety measures you have in place. Short, but impactful, training courses refresh the learning objectives and help learners consolidate the information for longer-term retention.
Blended learning- Mobile workers will need to practice skills obtained through training. Combining training aids such as videos and walkthroughs with training simulations gives workers a full training experience that allows them to practice their skills remotely.
Remote support and communication- Mobile workers will need a support team to provide answers to questions, analyze potential training gaps that exist, and deliver reskilling lessons as needed. Managers of mobile workforce teams need accurate data to understand that training was both completed and effective. This is critical information for operations and training team leads and senior executives.
At Skyllful, we have always understood the importance of firstline workers and have advocated for individualized, self-directed learning. In this unprecedented time of restricted travel and remote work, the need is even greater for companies to support their workers through alternative and innovative training.
Wondering how you can support essential workers during this crisis? Read this blog to learn about invisible workers and how you can do your part amidst COVID-19.