As society begins to accept that the current COVID-19 pandemic is going to be around for quite a while, mining companies have started paying more attention to e-learning for their managers and employees on matters of occupational safety and other pertinent issues. Several factors account for this increasing attention to online training.
The ongoing pandemic has disrupted work shifts and even kept a number of mining sector workers at home, so it is difficult to organize face to face training sessions without violating social distancing protocols.
With e-learning, mining company employees can study anywhere, at any time and using any device of their choice. There has been no better time to upgrade the skills of employees in the mining sector!
Online training is usually interactive and this leads engagement levels to skyrocket. This is because team leaders and employees can use virtual reality and augmented reality to get a firsthand experience of the concepts they are learning.
For example, a mining company like Energy Fuels Inc. (NYSE American: UUUU) (TSX: EFR) can simulate a mine accident so that employees appreciate the importance of conducting risk assessments before embarking on their day’s planned activities.
Consistency and Uniformity
Many mining companies have teams and active sites in diverse locations, and yet the training needs of the entire workforce could be the same. When digital learning is instituted, it becomes easy to standardize the training that all those employees receive because the online platform allows the training materials and methods to be uniform and consistent.
It is therefore easier to keep all staff at the same level of safety consciousness and technical ability for better outcomes.
If the current pandemic has taught companies anything, it is the painful realization that every penny counts. With cash reserves dwindling and the mining sector recovering at a slower pace than sector players would prefer, companies are turning to online training in order to keep costs minimal while sharpening the skills of their employees.
With e-learning, companies don’t have to fly trainers to different locations and venues don’t have to be booked for the training sessions. These lower costs have led mining companies to devote more attention to staff training since it doesn’t put such a dent in company finances and yet the benefits of such training are immense.
Online training materials can be tweaked quickly and easily in order to respond to the evolving needs of a mining company. For example, a company that discovers that several near-miss safety incidents are arising from their materials handling equipment can adjust the safety training to give more attention to the problem area which has been identified.
As the “new norm” with the coronavirus in our midst gets firmly entrenched, we are likely to see e-learning playing a more prominent role in the way mining companies conduct their business. The added benefit of this shift is that a lot more mining-related activities could be taken online.
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