To ensure compliance when rostering staff, CentrePort’s operational managers need to know which of their 155 operational team members have the correct and current certifications and skills to carry out port-specific tasks (for example, operating the forklifts or cranes) on any shift. They’re also responsible for identifying skill gaps, planning and requesting further employee training, and sharing training progress, outcomes and records with the port’s learning and development team.
However, despite the requirement to ensure appropriate training, a reliance on spreadsheets and dispersed data meant that it was difficult for the port’s operational managers to stay up to date with their team’s current and expired certifications.
In addition, workers had zero visibility of their training plans. To top it off, many employees aren’t IT savvy, so it was difficult to share training plans and schedules electronically. For those who did use email or SMS, official requests to attend training simply advised ‘training’ — and a date and time — with no further detail.
The dreaded training register spreadsheets
CentrePort’s reliance on spreadsheets to capture and manage data made the learning and training process for workers as complex as delivering the learning itself.
The Excel-based training register required continual maintenance, and any changes or updates were sent by managers to the register ‘owners’ (the learning and development team) via email. Unsurprisingly, the need for manual data sharing and input resulted in missing and incomplete training records, which were time-consuming to resolve.
Natasha Bennett, CentrePort’s Learning and Development Consultant, says that their inability to attach individual worker certifications to the spreadsheet made the compliance trail doubly hard to follow. And on top of the inherent risks of entering and maintaining data by hand, generating accurate, on-demand reports from the spreadsheet was a major challenge.