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It’s all too easy for courses to go stale when they are tagged as compliance training. We’ve seen the effects of this many times in our work over the years.

Schemes start with the best of intentions but the drive to maximise course occupancy and annual throughput begin to outweigh concerns about course content, training practices and the learner experience slips.

Learners always pick up on this – not just those who have done the training, but also those who are in line to do it and hearing bad things about what awaits them.

Before you know it, the providers of compulsory courses start to see peaks in demand where most training gets delivered just before the deadline. A shortage of trainers starts occurring during these peaks leading to rises in trainer fees. Low occupancy rates at other times increase delivery costs per learner.

Maintaining the quality of training is a fundamental task for any training organisation, especially for those delivering training that leads to the accreditations people need to carry out safety or business critical activities. But maintaining quality pales by comparison with the equally important task of continually improving it.

We’ve lost count of the number of times our teams have heard complaints from learners and trainers that exercises, examples, industry data, diagrams, videos or assessments are out of date or ‘the same as they were the first time we did the course’.

Cutting back on continuous improvement is a false economy for training providers and trainers alike and exposes both to risk. A lack of commitment to, or opportunity for, professional development makes it harder for trainers to engage learners effectively or adapt to new roles such as coaching, assessing and learning support. It threatens the reputations of training organisations, and makes it much more difficult for them to demonstrate value and impact to paying clients.

At the heart of staying relevant is a simple question: Do we buy what we sell? Training organisations which promise one thing but provide another are never far from being found out.

Stay relevant is one of five essential ways to improve compulsory training/licensing programmes that CAS has identified through its monitoring and inspection contracts – read more about them here.