To Train or NOT to Train - When someone writes a Work Instruction or Procedure

P
#1
Question on Training: Should all published procedures and work instructions require that those personnel affected be “Trained” to them and after which, an evaluation of training effectiveness be performed?

Should it be mandated that any time someone writes a work instruction, training has to be provided, evaluations performed and records maintained?

If the answer above is no, what would the distinction be where training is required and not required? What criteria would one use when determining if training is necessary or not?

I believe ISO 9001:2000 required Tier 2 procedures require training. Organizational Tier 2 procedures not required by ISO but necessary should at the very least require some type of awareness training. Finally, some Tier 3 work instructions may require training and some may not.
 
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Marc

Hunkered Down for the Duration
Staff member
Admin
#2
Yes - Training must be provided and a record or the training must be maintained any time you issue a work instruction or procedure.
 

Wes Bucey

Quite Involved in Discussions
#3
Marc said:
Yes - Training must be provided and a record or the training must be maintained any time you issue a work instruction or procedure.
I'm not really sure about the need for TRAINING for each new work instruction, but I am absolutely CERTAIN you need to have a competency test for everyone who will perform the activity covered by the WI.

Think of it as similar to taking a PROFICIENCY EXAM to skip to higher level courses in school. If you score sufficiently high on the exam, you can take the next level course without plodding through stuff you already know.

If you had a Work Instruction for high school draftsmen in drafting Engineering documents, would you require graduate Engineers to go through the training? In my opinion, that would be a waste of resources.
 
#4
This is a hot button for me. I will agree that you need to have training for any new, or modified work instruction. However, that training can be relatively informal, and I would argue that training records are not always required (getting back to that “appropriate” thing). I would also argue that any “competence testing” could be as simple as looking at normal quality and production outputs. Once again, the formality of records of this would be up to you.

I think too many of us try to make this too complicated.
 
J

Jim Howe

#5
Certainly most of us have expressed opinions on this at one time or another. It occurred to me that when I was trained to "ESD-LEVEL III", I was then certified. Once a year I was required to be retested to maintain my certification. If I failed the test then I was retrained (concurrently).
You see I could not lose my certification! The employer recognized that if I lost my certification they longer could enjoy the "fruits of my labor" so they wrote the procedures in such a manner that it was a closed loop system. Each employee was trained and certifed to the appropriate level (I-IV) and then retested (retrained) each year. This was under MIL-Q-9858A. Would it survive under ISO?
It did work! Each employee, over time, became very conscious of ESD hazards!
 

Marc

Hunkered Down for the Duration
Staff member
Admin
#6
Wes Bucey said:
I'm not really sure about the need for TRAINING for each new work instruction, but I am absolutely CERTAIN you need to have a competency test for everyone who will perform the activity covered by the WI.
I disagree. The 'training' may be OJT, but people must be trained. I would not put a person at a press, for example, with a new work instruction and not 'train' that person on the instruction (typically their supervisor does this).

On the other hand, I seldom see any type of competency test for same. The closest I typically see is "Show Me" or "You do it once while I watch" or "Do you understand what I just explained to you?"

I think the degree of training and whether or not a competency test is required is situation specific.
 

Wes Bucey

Quite Involved in Discussions
#7
Marc said:
I disagree. The 'training' may be OJT, but people must be trained. I would not put a person at a press, for example, with a new work instruction and not 'train' that person on the instruction (typically their supervisor does this).

On the other hand, I seldom see any type of competency test for same. The closest I typically see is "Show Me" or "You do it once while I watch" or "Do you understand what I just explained to you?"

I think the degree of training and whether or not a competency test is required is situation specific. On the other hand, I seldom see any type of competency test for same. The closest I typically see is "Show Me" or "You do it once while I watch" or "Do you understand what I just explained to you?"
In the real world, this kind of competency test may be all that's necessary. Similarly, "training" can be simply giving the worker a copy of the instructions with no hands-on training.

Some organizations take the worker's possession of a driver's license as proof of competency, while others require workers to take a practical exam to show competency to handle the organization's equipment.

However, even if it is only as minimal as Marc describes, I believe it is imperative for the organization to be able to attest to the competency of a worker to perform a task whether or not formal training is part of the equation.

On this point, we may have to agree to disagree!
 

Marc

Hunkered Down for the Duration
Staff member
Admin
#8
I think we agree, Wes. My experience in semi-conductor, for example, was operators were trained and then every six months they were retested. This was because one operator screwup could potentially cost upwards of US$100,000.

On the other hand, as I say, take something simple like metal forming - a test for competency every 6 months wouldn't buy much.
 

Jen Kirley

Quality and Auditing Expert
Staff member
Admin
#9
I support training to new procedures because it gives a chance for feedback.

Technical writing is not easy. Being clear, direct, and easily understandable by the wide array of users helps to ensure the procedure will be properly followed after the supervisor leaves the area.

The fact that it was written in the first place shows me that it is supposed to be important, there is a value to it and there's a risk of loss should we fail to properly use it. But how many times have we seen overly technical, garbled, or otherwise nonsensical documents and have workers disdain them? Very often, this loop does not get closed or it happens after recognizable loss. Then there is physical loss, but also morale loss that damages further efforts to effectively document processes.

There are lots of small ways to record such training. It doesn't have to be a nuke of a process, but it should be there in some form.

I suggest making the trainees part of the solution, not a detail to be attended to.
 
D

David Hartman

#10
I have to take perhaps a little different twist on this subject. Why not train, test/check for competency, and forget the work instruction? In some areas you may want to have a bullet list/flow chart/visual reminder of the process, but I believe that training, supervision, and testing for competency should be more than adequate for many activities.
:2cents:
 
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