On Jan. 19, the local chapter of the American Society for Training and Development awarded Grundfos North America’s training team with the top title in the category of Workplace Learning and Performance through Technology Innovation.
The award recognized the efforts of internal training specialist Heidi Matthews and training coordinator Andrea Munson, who excelled in the following areas:
- Creating the web-based “Get Connected” campaign to drive employees to online training
- Assisting in the development of 10 web-based product training classes with program management that reached more than 200 customers
- Increasing the number of e-learning participants from 352 in 2010 to more than 900 in 2011
Bob Parks, director of human resources, praised the pair’s great strides in innovative training.
“This is an excellent example of how Heidi and Andrea are embracing new strategy and driving results,” Parks said. “It reinforces the commitment all our regional companies have made to supporting our efforts.”
Last year, Matthews and Munson were given the opportunity to expand their reach. With no change in staff and only a small budget increase, they went from supporting 225 employees from one company to supporting more than 1,600 employees from eight companies in three countries.
Before 2011, courses were mainly conducted face-to-face; however, travel costs made such courses impossible for all 1,600 employees.
Overcoming the Challenge
Matthews and Munson turned many of the traditional classes into virtual instructor-led training. Using this new medium, they were able to add engaging interactivities, including polls, chat boxes, and breakout rooms throughout the training classes.
The move to online classes made attending training possible for a record number of participants. One company was even able to boast a 72 percent participation rate among its employees.
In addition to human performance improvement classes, the team also decided to use subject matter experts to create technical training for employees. Salespeople from the U.S., Canada and Mexico were able to receive training on new products without travel, connecting to the courses from throughout North America. In 2011, Matthew and Munson produced 10 product trainings for more than 200 participants.
The team also created asynchronous e-Learning pieces. They created and deployed 17 short e-Learning pieces ranging from interviewing to writing goals. The freedom of this learning style allowed for the participation of those who would not normally be able to take advantage of face-to-face courses.
“I can take a class online when it is convenient for me, no matter what time of day or where I am travelling globally,” said Dennis Wierzbicki, president of Grundfos Pumps Corporation.
Evaluations showed that 86 percent of respondents used the learning material within one month of taking the class. Overall, Matthews and Munson reached 925 learners with the help of technology-based learning.