The baby boomers are leaving.
In fact, 50% of the nation’s utility workforce will be retiring in the next five to 10 years. According to a 2015 American Public Power Association (APPA), 55% of electric utilities reported that at least 20% of their workforce will be eligible for retirement within five years. The U.S. Department of Energy and the U.S. Department of Labor show that 25%–50% of utility employees will retire between 2024 and 2029.
The Nuclear Energy Institute estimated that 39 percent of the nuclear workforce were eligible for retirement by 2018, needing 20,000 new workers through 2022 to replace those workers. New skilled workers are needed in order to keep up the numbers of those leaving through retirement.
As a compliance manager, you have to improve safety, remove liability issues, and keep those new workers and your existing ones up-to-date with required compliance training.
There is a way to train your utility employees, especially when it comes to the critical OSHA 1910.269 regulatory compliance.
What is OSHA 1910.269?
OSHA 1910.269 is a standard that covers power generation, transmission and distribution, and the maintenance of electric power generation. It dictates that every employee must be trained and competent in work practices and safety procedures, including emergency procedures.
When you’re a compliance manager, you know safety is a given. If it’s not, it can spell disaster. Take for example the Florida utility company Tampa Electric Company. When it ignored its own rules, five workers were killed. The result? OSHA hit the company with its most serious violation—a willful violation. The company was also fined $126,749.
This alone shows the serious need for compliance training for your new and existing workers.
Compliance Manager Challenges
When you’re a compliance manager, you have to improve your company’s safety as per the OSHA 1910.269 standard, making sure you’re ready when compliance inspection time comes. And even if you have a small number of employees, all workers must be trained. It’s an OSHA compliance requirement.
Your job comes with a number of critical challenges. You have to:
- Manage your employees’ compliance
- Reduce your liability
- Close any worker skill or knowledge gaps
- Implement safety training and documentation
- Improve safety
- Ensure consistent training all locations and jurisdictions as dictated by your company
What is the best way to prepare everyone for OSHA 1910.269 certifications and recertifications?
Using a New eLearning Management System (LMS) for Utility Companies
You have too much on your plate as it is with your OSHA 1910.269 compliance. You may have a Learning Management System in place, but it’s a problem to use. If you’re getting one, you have to set it up, or if you already have one, it’s outdated. And chances are, if one is suggested, it may be too complicated to use. Even if you have a small number of employees in your company, that’s not a reason to bypass an LMS and the OSHA 1910.269 training unless you want to be liable for accidents and potentially heavy fines. You have to find a solution that’s easy to use for you and your workers.
OSHA clearly states that employers must train employees in the safety and health aspects of their jobs. The training you provide must also be presented in a language and vocabulary that your workers can understand.
Fortunately, there are tools that can bring training for OSHA 1910.269 certification and recertification training that stay “in-house” rather than sending workers to off-site training sessions, and makes training simpler than sitting in a classroom for X number of hours listening to lectures and taking notes.
A technology-based, modular LMS from WestNet Learning is created to manage and deliver e-courses that are organized into specific courses anywhere. Utility companies can provide compliance training with custom online courses designed specifically for their workers. Because of the e-course format and its benefits, you’ll see an employee buy-in for their compliance training.
A user-friendly LMS to improve OSHA 1910.269 training
An LMS should be easy to use and let your employees study in ways that best suit them. The younger generation of workers are tech-savvy, so they appreciate the ability to self-direct their learning using a touchscreen on any mobile device. Older workers can take advantage of the e-course learning on a desktop or laptop in classroom-based, instructor-led training.
With e-courses, learning takes place at the student’s own pace and schedule. Their learning also involves social learning groups. Social learning is ideal as your workers can contribute in discussion groups that further facilitate the learning process. They can network, share, collaborate, and exchange ideas in problem-solving throughout their course.
WestNet’s enterprise-level LMS also provides a user dashboard display that shows the Training Badges obtained by the trainee for the successful completion of their training. Students add some competition to their learning experience with a learning “leaderboard” that shows the top badge holders for the course. Once their OSHA 19410.269 coursework is complete, they can print the transcriptions and certificates showing their e-course completion.
Enable tracking of certifications and recertifications
As the compliance manager, you have to ensure consistent training across your company’s locations and jurisdictions. WestNet LMS enables you to email trainees, track course registrations and employee course timelines, then monitor and assess their performance. When you have access to the Ready Reports module, you can pull analytics for users, courses, and surveys.
The Analytics Dashboard provides a graphical dashboard view of your site’s statistics, course registrations, and completions based on the courses you choose to track. You can also track and receive employee transcripts, and certifications and recertifications as well as determine if there are any workers who are experiencing difficulties.
You may have employees who do fail to earn their certificates. These individuals could have knowledge or skill gaps that need immediate attention. Others who received their certificates may also experience some gaps, but when they’re addressed through online tracking, you’ll be able to intervene and give them the help them need.
From the newly hired to experienced utility workers, WestNet LMS enables you to provide your employees with a solution to complete their OSHA 1910.269 requirements in a self-paced environment. And you have the ability to eliminate your most critical management challenges.
If you want to keep your utility company OSHA 1910.269 compliant, schedule your call for a 1-on-1 strategy session today!