The training that is available in the market differs immensely, and often the question gets asked: what makes one training program better than the next? We believe when all the studies, reports, and academic-speak are stripped away what remains is this: what makes one program better than another are the results produced.
Consider the following example that compares the number of productive hours being spent in training for an average class in an average program:
|Quality of Training
||Training Efficiency||Number of Students||Number of Hours||Training Results|
|Weak Program||65%||16||40||416 productive hours|
|Average Program||80%||16||40||512 productive hours|
|Superior Program||95%||16||40||608 productive hours|
Considering further that the typical soldier, seaman, firefighter, and security professional spends an average of 240 hours per year in training, then the differences in results becomes even more important; in this example the superior training program produces on average 1,152 more productive hours than a weak training program! (Ineffective time spent that costs an organization hundreds of thousands of dollars!)
How VSD Produces Superior Programs
Few outside the training and education industry realize that in order to produce such results, a training program must have four characteristics: sound designs, accurate knowledge, appropriate tools, and excellent instruction.
Sound design – one that is efficient and focused – is achieved through science. There are many learning science and manpower needs analysis consultancies around the world that can analyze an organization’s needs. To recognize quality in this specialization, a client should be looking for expertise in mission-objectives analysis, job-task analysis, and knowledge-skills-abilities mapping. These are the tools necessary to 1) understand what work needs to be done, 2) how frequently and precisely each task needs to be performed, and 3) what human workforce elements need to be factored into the design. VSD’s learning science team excels in all of these areas, and would be happy to demonstrate their competency in this specialization.
Accurate knowledge means knowing the work that needs doing, the right steps, and the mistakes that are most often made. VSD gathers this knowledge from genuine experts: aircraft pilots, ship captains, specialized equipment operators and even our own in-house experts. We also work with OEMs and specialized vendors from around the globe, finding the best source of knowledge, regardless of where it resides.
Appropriate tools are simply about choosing the right tools for the job at hand. Choosing the right training tools requires a combination of human factors and manpower analysis (to understand the students) and a depth of training experience (knowing which tools work and which do not in a given situation). The best solutions today are called “blended” training solutions – solutions made up of classroom work, laboratory work, simulator-based training and on-the-job training. Creating the right mix and the right balance requires the input of genuine training experts. Unlike other training solution providers, VSD does not commence work with its clients under the assumption that: one size fits all. Superior courses that produce superior training results do not come off the shelf nor are they comprised of just one training tool, as many would like training buyers to believe. Superior results come with matching the right training tools – in the right proportion, combination and sequence – to fit the unique and specific situation.
Excellence in instruction is not standardized; what motivates a student and groups of students to learn at their best differs greatly from situation to situation. What is important to know about VSD is that we appreciate that for every training program to work there must be chemistry and energy between the students and the instructors. We also know that even the most excellently designed course in the world will fail miserably if the right delivery mechanisms and instructors are not in place. With thousands of courses delivered – many in difficult and high-pressure training environments – VSD understands how to match the student’s and the situation’s needs to the right instructors in order to maximize the results produced by this interaction.
Solving the Whole Problem
Building a workforce, improving performance across multiple teams, and achieving superior productivity in all of its forms is about producing results. What is different about VSD is that we – as a training solution provider have the resources to excel in all four areas. In addition to scientifically designing a training program, VSD builds the tools, creates the right mix, and sources the finest instructors.
By taking responsibility for all phases of training program development – from concept through implementation – VSD is able to bring structure to a solution that other niche training providers simply cannot. A well-structured training program gives students as well as instructors, administrators, and strategists the chance to plan properly, to measure results more precisely, and to learn more efficiently. When superior programs are implemented on an organization-wide scale, and hundreds and even thousands of students benefit from the learning efficiency, the results our clients experience are often astounding.