By Alex Hanley
In the food industry, training is a means to an end, and the end is consistent performance in the plant. To take it a step further, ‘consistent execution’ should be aligned with the behaviour the company needs for you to perform.
Indeed, the real merit of training isn’t just about ticking boxes or boasting about achievements. It’s about imparting knowledge that translates into tangible actions, ensuring that the plant operates at its peak. In the food industry, where margins for errors are minuscule, this consistency isn’t merely desired – it’s crucial. But striking the right balance in training to achieve this consistency can be challenging.
There are four critical strategies that can drive consistent execution on the plant floor:
Indeed, the real merit of training isn’t just about ticking boxes or boasting about achievements. It’s about imparting knowledge that translates into tangible actions, ensuring that the plant operates at its peak.
Using the broader competency framework, you can focus your training efforts where they really matter, which makes it easier to provide continuity between training and the rest of your operation. Supervisors will reinforce what their crews learned in the classroom during production, and those same learnings can be reinforced throughout the year, for example through visual communication or team meetings.
Measuring training effectiveness should be extremely easy if you’ve done a good assessment right from the beginning. When training focuses on work that directly impacts your business’s Key Performance Indicators (KPI’s), tracking those has the added benefit of indicating whether the training worked.
As a bonus, this gives employees agency over their work and allows them to boost their knowledge, practice their skills, and master the tasks they need to be able to perform to be good at their job.
This, in turn, increases their confidence, job security, and overall engagement. The bottom line is that it inspires them to develop capabilities beyond their role. And that’s great for business and implementing a stellar food safety culture.
About the Author:
Alex Hanley, CEO of Navigate Food Safety, is a food safety expert with over two decades in the food industry, most of those as a food safety auditor. He has a deep understanding of food safety management systems and certification and has performed more than 1,000 HACCP quality systems, and food safety audits covering multiple categories, in addition to traveling the world designing, implementing, and auditing best practices for manufacturers of every scale.