AIG Ireland – Bennett Construction’s Innovative Approach to Manual Handling Training Reduces the Burden

By IANPEMBERTON | Published: 15/02/2017

Bennett Construction, an AIG Ireland client, are using the Human Focus online system to deliver manual handling training to their staff in a new, highly innovative, approach. Colm Sharkey, Group Safety Manager at Bennett Constructions says “We see this online system as a great way of improving the efficiency of our manual handling training system - it's going to save us a lot of time and will take us to a new level in the way we develop the skills of our workforce. We think it's great that our employees will now be able to receive feedback on their phone and watch themselves working to see how they can improve their skills.”

Via the Create Training function the health and safety team at Bennett Construction have produced a bespoke e-Learning programme that will be used to support manual handling training for their staff.

The Bennett Safety team filming their bespoke manual handling training programme using the Human Focus mobile app

The video e-Learning programme was produced in less than an hour on one of Bennett Construction’s projects in Dublin using the Human Focus mobile app. This app enables the rapid authoring of e-Learning programmes in the workplace to produce highly specific courses. The Bennett Construction Manual Handling e-Learning Programme covers 8 principles of lifting and handling as applied to their operations and conditions on site. Once created, a single tap of a button enabled the safety team to post their e-Learning course to the Human Focus web system for publication and training of staff and contractors.

Another highly innovative aspect of this project is the use of the Human Focus system to support on-the-job skills development. After completing the online knowledge training Bennett Construction staff will be asked to demonstrate that they can apply the manual handling principles during their daily operations. Using the Human Focus mobile app Bennett Construction site managers will be able to video short performance reviews of staff as they work. Lasting no longer than 60 seconds these training snippets are automatically posted to each trainee’s e-Learning account from where they can review their progress. Employees can then watch these video performance reviews from their own mobile phone or any desktop PC.

Training science shows that this is a highly effective way of developing a skilled behaviour – watching a video of our self as we work – especially if the video is tagged with signposts that direct our attention to what we did well, and, where we need to improve.

Online screen via which Bennett FETAC manual handling trainers provide performance feedback on posted video evaluations

To facilitate this trainee feedback process the Human Focus system will enable members of the Bennett Construction safety team to review the video evaluations as they are posted to the system. Via a simple feedback screen they are able to watch the video snippets and post comments and performance assessments to help direct the attention of each trainee to the key learning points.

As well as supporting employee skills development it is hoped these training e-Portfolios will also help improve Bennett Construction’s statutory compliance. In the Republic of Ireland health and safety regulations require employers to assess each member of staff on-the-job to ensure they have achieved the necessary practical skills required to lift and handle loads safely. This legislation requires these worksite manual handling assessments to be performed by trainers who have achieved a Level 6 FETAC certification. From now on these assessments, at least in part, can be supported by remote input from FETAC trainers via the Human Focus online system. It means they can provide more frequent feedback and guidance to employees whilst travelling less often to site. The online video tool will also replace a cumbersome paper recording system.

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