We have recently been asked to provide an in-house training course for a County Council who wanted a tailored course. They raised concerns that previous training providers had only taught their staff to lift a box in a classroom environment. This had led to problems as what their staff actually did was far removed from simply picking up boxes.
We see many organisations that suffer the same fate and then wonder why manual handling injuries still account for a high proportion of their accident and ill health statistics. As manual handling remains high on the list of what’s reported through RIDDOR, clearly many UK businesses have the same problems.
It’s about time training providers and people booking the training started to realise that just attending a training course on manual handling does not help to prevent injuries, nor does it protect the business from its liabilities. In reality, why would it? If your staff attend training and don’t feel the training relates to them or what they do then they are unlikely to take much in, are they?!
Clearly, you have to understand what they do and what their problems are in order to be able to provide solutions, and sometimes this is not straightforward. But if you are prepared to work in partnership with a training provider then you can relay what you need – before the training takes place. For us, this meant a visit to the County Council to go through what their staff do and the problems they face.
Of course this all takes a little more time and involves a little more cost but the results can pay dividends as we have seen accident and injury rates fall dramatically when people fully buy into the training.
So perhaps next time you are thinking about training it’s worth asking yourself “what will we get for our money and will it make a positive difference to our business?”.