OH&S/WH&S Blended Learning Model
For the New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) risk and danger is ‘part of the job’. However, three independent reviews identified the need for NZDF to adopt a risk-based safety management approach. The Health and Safety Work Act 2015 (HSWA) imposed additional legislative requirements as well as further substantiated the need for change.
The Chief of the Defence Force wanted NZDF to be proactive rather than reactive and viewed managing safety risk as the “right thing to do”.
The project had three core objectives.
- Expose personnel to the need for change
- Move away from health and safety being a “compliance” issue
- Involve and support staff in a collaborative safety culture that facilitates continuous improvement
The courses content especially was required to be:
- no longer than 45 minutes but covering all procedures
- suitable for delivery to all levels of the organisation
- cohesive with NZDF brand and colours, and utilise videos and still images
- simple, clean and easily comprehensible
- relevant, functional, engaging, and interactive
- SCORM-compliant for delivery on the NZDF’s Learning Management System
Timing was the critical element – with the course initially targeted for release within eight weeks to 1200 NZDF staff.
While Safetrac offers off-the-shelf training packages on the HSWA which can be tailored to organisations, given the unique content matter the Defence Force required a fully customised module to ensure that it was relatable to staff.
The construction of the course relied on specialist expertise from employees within both Safetrac and the NZDF. The Staff Officer Safety Learning Strategy, Directorate of Safety provided information regarding internal requirements.
The original scope, which was less interactive and more text-based would meet NZDF’s target of 8 weeks. However, after planning and discussions between the parties, it was agreed to revise the timeframes to create a more engaging course, with a focus on less text.
Safetrac and NZDF staff then developed the approach to accommodate an engaging, scenario-based learning module.
The e-module was rolled out in conjunction with another module which introduced learners to the new NZDF Safety Management System (SMS), and roadshows on Health & Safety, as part of a comprehensive safety learning strategy.
The module was built on Storyline 2 to ensure compatibility with NZDF’s Learning Management System.
The NZDF needed to train their military personnel together with civilian and contract personnel. The content also needed to be appropriate for each of the different Forces – Army, Navy and Air Force – while promoting that health and safety is ultimately a priority of the entirety of the NZDF.
Videos and images provided by the NZDF were incorporated into the course, including still photos of the Warrant Officer of the Defence Force as a relatable guide throughout the module. This ensured the course was engaging and applicable to everyday scenarios faced by staff.
As this online course is part of a blended learning experience, staff found the online learning delivery method to be an engaging way to undertake some of the training. This course created a welcomed change in pace and learning style from what was otherwise a long, face-to-face presentation.
Learners found the content both engaging and very informative, with over 1200 personnel completing and passed the Health and Safety module.
The use of military photos, personnel, and scenarios, rather than generic compliance-based cartoons etc. which are common in commercial packages, was highly valued.
The use of a video featuring the Chief of Defence, explaining why the module was essential and the reasons behind creating it, was seen by the audience as a direct indicator that this training was of vital importance to NZDF.
Using Warrant Officer Broughton as a guide throughout the module, who was well known within the NZDF, meant the content became personal to those completing it.
Roadshows were attended by staff after completion of the course. Module completion and pass rates before the roadshows were very high and during the roadshows, personnel displayed significant retention of the course content. This was exhibited through questions and discussion which demonstrated an understanding of the legal and organisational reasons for change and the SMS.
This high level of retained knowledge has meant that NZDF has not had to reteach information that was provided in this module. This has allowed NZDF to spend training time building on this knowledge rather than repeating it.
An unexpected impact of the training was a substantial increase in personnel seeking more information regarding the implementation of the SMS. This demonstrated that the module had assisted personnel to contextualise the legislation and how it impacts their duties in amongst the NZDF’s organisational objectives.
Personnel from all forces reported that they felt engaged throughout the training and were able to understand the information in the context of their own roles within the NZDF.
Create customised or bespoke courses
We can support you by developing customised or bespoke training courses to engage your staff.