It is becoming common today for businesses to rent heavy machinery and equipment in addition to investing in their own arsenal of tools and equipment. Enterprises rent a wide range of equipment — from industrial trucks and specialized tools to generators and forklifts — primarily to save on upfront capital expenditure. But whatever the equipment being rented, it is mandatory that the technicians are provided training to use it effectively without compromising on the organization’s safety requirements.
While training is mandated by OSHA, businesses that champion employee wellbeing as part of their organizational culture give priority to a 360-degree training program.
The effect of a robust training program can be felt in three areas:
- Employees/Contractors: It is not only about compliance but also ensuring that employees are well-trained and up-to-date on best practices of operating and/or maintaining a piece of equipment.
- The Customer: Needless to say, when there are safety concerns or accidents, there is a direct impact on meeting customer needs. Accidents result in delays, inducing risks into the customer lifecycle and, overall, results in a not-so-good experience for the customer.
- The Equipment: A good training management system, with the right collaboration features, on-demand training content, and best practices to stay abreast with regulations reduces the cost of maintenance, breakdown of equipment and plays a key role in driving operational efficiency.
Training can also protect managers in case of an accident and if there is litigation as a result. Courts hold businesses responsible for the injury if the employee was allowed to handle equipment without proper training. Not only is a certification essential to prove the course meets the standards but the technician also needs to get a satisfactory grade or repeat the training in case of an unsatisfactory grade.
Managing Safety Training for Rented Equipment
Employees are often given training in the organization’s own equipment that they use regularly. The organization may have a continuous learning program to ensure that the employees are up-to-date with any changes in processes and procedures as well as provide training to new recruits.
It is crucial to deliver the same kind of training for rented equipment as well, and a well-documented training policy is critical.
The actual training delivered versus what was planned needs to be measured annually to make sure that the policy is being implemented and that the worker, equipment, and organizational safety are not compromised in any way.
Next, for each piece of equipment being rented, the nature of training may differ — since each piece of equipment will have its own unique safety issues, controls, and operating methods. The organization needs to determine the nature of training required and identify experts, internal or external, to ensure appropriate and timely training.
Following the training, the employees should be tested and certified and safety leaders must ensure that the training content is in line with the requirements of OSHA, ASTM, ANSI, and NFPA. The relevant certifications need to be stored safely for submission to demonstrate compliance.
Automating Training Management with ComplianceQuest EHS
The training management process involves several processes and when not automated, errors creep in. Let’s take a look at a sample of activities in the training workflow:
- Maintain the “training and certification” status of all equipment operators and maintenance engineers
- Track progress on training vs. annual training requirements
- Ensure adherence to OSHA, ISO, and other regulatory standards
- Have ready access to a register of all employees who are trained and authorized to operate a piece of equipment
- Manage preventative maintenance schedule and ensure the maintenance engineer does this on time
- Upgrade skills with on-demand content
- Submission of certification to relevant regulatory bodies
- Provide management oversight into the status of training at any point in time
- Make it easy to collaborate with other stakeholders through seamless communication and notifications
- A CAPA process can trigger a training that needs to be done
This list could go on. The point is safety leaders must document a training management process that is end-to-end, and takes into account both risk management and compliance requirements.
An EHS solution like the one from ComplianceQuest provides a training management solution to help businesses ensure that their workforce is trained, skilled and certified to drive productivity while maintaining compliance. Safety leaders can track and manage the training requirements of each employee with complete visibility throughout the knowledge acquisition process.
Whenever an enterprise hires a piece of equipment, the EHS training module can be customized to ensure timely training on the machine, facilitating a stable, automated, and therefore repeatable training management process. This not only makes employees job-ready but the business audit-ready too.
At ComplianceQuest, we serve the world’s largest dealers of Caterpillar construction equipment and heavy machinery. These machines are used in various sectors including mining, construction, oil, forestry, and the industrial segment. Headquartered in Vancouver, Canada, the company found that the manual system for site safety auditing was delaying the whole process and needed automation to make sure safety practices were implemented and timely training provided to the users of the equipment. Read case study.
From using a combination of pen-and-paper and legacy software, the company moved to ComplianceQuest’s EHS solution which helped them automate the site safety audit process as also fine-tune training management. The rental equipment company’s customers could create training programs based on the specific job roles/titles but also the equipment and how the training is going to be provided – live, virtual; using internal or external resources, and so on.
The equipment rental company not only rented the equipment to customers but by using ComplianceQuest EHS, they were also able to offer an automated system for equipment maintenance, training of equipment operators, preventive maintenance scheduling, etc.
“They met all of our requirements including the ability to configure the application to our needs.”
Project Manager, Finning
The training management solution also enables identifying training gaps, missed deadlines, and overdue training to ensure that there is no slackening in the pace of training. This ensures that the employees remain compliant and properly skilled even when requirements change. The automated tracking of completed courses and training helps safety leaders demonstrate that the workforce meets the regulatory requirements and complies with international standards such as ISO, GXP, and government regulations.
One of the unique features of the CQ EHS learning management software is that it provides access to e-learning programs. Businesses can easily create content for online learning programs or integrate with third-party learning management systems (LMS). This can enable the staff to access ready-made online learning with LearnAboutGMP and LearnAboutSafety content from anywhere, anytime.
Built on the Salesforce platform, the EHS Solution from ComplianceQuest is a flexible, scalable, and customizable solution. Being modular, our EHS allows businesses to implement the various modules in a phased manner, based on their needs and priorities, making it cost-effective.
To know more about the CQ EHS and Training Management, visit here: