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Training $ Costs - Training Needs Analysis - ISO 14001 Clause 4.4.2a

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Marty50

#1
Hi guys thanks for such a great forum.

I am part way through doing my first ISO14001 gap analysis on a company of around 500 employees. 4.4.2.A requires identification of training needs.

They dont seem to have done a systemetic environmental Training Needs Analaysis so I am recomending they do.

I have also asked the questions is there a training budget? Are environmental training costs recorded? But this is mostly buried in their accounting system under "training" which includes all training.

With the exception of other records that show a such and such a group attended a course on environmental stuff its been pretty hard to find documentation.

Does anyone have experience on being audited and asked for segregated environmental training costs in the spreadsheets or doesnt this happen? can you just tell the auditor approximately this % is for environmental training and get away with that?

Marty
 

Randy

Super Moderator
#2
Hi Marty and thanks for visiting.

While training is important you (and the company) seem to be missing the boat. Training is not an end result, it's just one of the steps for competency development (demonstrated ability to apply skills and knowledge).

The answers to your specific questions are all relevant to the needs of the organization. Seldom do I do the budget thing when I audit, primarily because most organizations place training in the wrong area (cost as opposed to investment). As an auditor I look at the entire process of competency development which basically involves how were needs identified and how are needs met.

As for telling the auditor something is equal to some percent, unless you can back it up with actual figures don't go down that path, just say here's what we must cover, here's who gets it and have records ready.

Ask yourself a question..."What would I want to see?" and then follow through.
 
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Marty50

#3
Randy thankyou for coming back to me.

So what you are saying is as an auditor you wouldn’t ask me to show that I had committed appropriate budget towards environmental training?

My investigation has found that the company conducts induction training and general training all of which has some environmental components. Some specific training is purely environmental. They also have a large number Standard Work Procedure documents that I want to recommend they embed environmental considerations as these are used extensively in their training processes.

For example they have put perhaps 90% of through well documented hands on spill control course. I have sighted training records but not the cots of the training. They have spill control kits all over the plant. And last week I watched a situation where a large hydraulic machine burst and leaked oil and the operating team sprung into action and contained the leak before it got to storm water drains. All a credit to their training and being provided with the right tools I reckon.

In the Thompson Environmental Management Systems Handbook I have been using for some major guidance it talks about the high cost of environmental training and looking at training budgets.

What would I look for? Documented evidence that anyone who carries out a task that may have a significant environmental impact has received some training to make them aware of that risk and competent to prevent it or in the case that it occur, deal with it effectively. I would look for examples like the above and what additional training might have been identified from analysing that incident. I personally wouldn’t care what it costs but I am sure some managers would.

Marty
(from down under by the way)
:thanks:
 

SteelMaiden

Super Moderator
Super Moderator
#4
We've never had anyone ask us how much we've spent for training. An auditor usually will go out and do their audit, ask employees questions, and perhaps ask that employee what training they have had, then comes back and looks at training records for that employee to mesh the interview together with what training the employee has, and if there is a training matrix, what they were supposed to have. Competence is yet another closely related but different step. example: I saw the employee, the employee was doing the right things, the employee told me about the training that is given, I saw evidence of the training records. Now, how do I know that the company is confident that Joe over there is competent?

The mistake that I see too many times is that management feels if the employee was told something in a training class, they are now competent. Training does not equal competency, necessarily. The formula would be more like Training + On The Job Training + Experience + Willingness + Ability = Competence. and not all the variables are equally weighted for each "knowledge set".
 

Randy

Super Moderator
#5
Randy thankyou for coming back to me.

So what you are saying is as an auditor you wouldn’t ask me to show that I had committed appropriate budget towards environmental training?
Nope, I'm not saying that. I'm saying that I normally don't ask. To be honest I couldn't care less how much is budgeted for training if I'm provided evidence that employees are competent. Training isn't the end all, it's just one of the steps towards competency.


And last week I watched a situation where a large hydraulic machine burst and leaked oil and the operating team sprung into action and contained the leak before it got to storm water drains. All a credit to their training and being provided with the right tools I reckon.
This could be evidence of competence and emergency response.

In the Thompson Environmental Management Systems Handbook I have been using for some major guidance it talks about the high cost of environmental training and looking at training budgets.
The best handbook I recommend is ISO 14004.

What would I look for? Documented evidence that anyone who carries out a task that may have a significant environmental impact has received some training to make them aware of that risk and competent to prevent it or in the case that it occur, deal with it effectively.
You did that above.

I personally wouldn’t care what it costs but I am sure some managers would.
As well they should (you should too). Also quit calling it cost. If you expect something back from the training it is an investment.

Marty
(from down under by the way)
:thanks:
I added some information in your post Marty
 
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dhammonds

#6
I have never been through an audit where the auditor asked what my training costs were. In my experience, the thing you should be most concerned about is making sure you have good competent people who know how their job affects the environment, and what to do in the event of an emergency. Document your "costs" if you want to, but documenting competency is much better, and a better use of your resources.

Randy is also right, the best book on 14001 is the standard, everything else is just wasting money.
 
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ralphsulser

#8
If top management thinks the cost of training is high, then what is the cost of not training? It is like the old commercial for Fram oil filters...you can pay us $5.00 now, or $5,000 to a garage mechanic later.
 
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dhammonds

#9
If top management thinks the cost of training is high, then what is the cost of not training? It is like the old commercial for Fram oil filters...you can pay us $5.00 now, or $5,000 to a garage mechanic later.

Or what is the cost of having to pay your auditor to come to your site for a second time after you are unsuccessful in achieving certification?
 
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Marty50

#10
Thanks guys .....I will go rejig my paper to include training investments and focus more on the competnecies :)

Marty

:thanks:
 
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