With approximately 427 million employed worldwide, of which 80% is made up of deskless workers, the role these employees play in the growth and success of the manufacturing industry cannot be overstated.
However, in recent years, businesses have faced a series of challenges in providing these workers with the relevant and accessible training they need from technical adaptation to filling skills gaps.
This article will explore five of the most effective methods. By incorporating these techniques, organisations can not only enhance their employees' skill sets, but also boost workforce retention and productivity.
Understanding Deskless Workers in Manufacturing
The Role of Deskless Workers in Manufacturing
Deskless workers are most commonly found in the manufacturing industry, construction, transportation, and logistics; from operating machinery, production line assembly, and quality control, to material handling. Deskless workers in manufacturing are responsible for a wide range of tasks, they are the backbone of the industry, executing the day-to-day jobs necessary to produce goods and support the global economy.
Over the past 3-5 years, deskless workers have faced increasing challenges related to their work-life balance, with a survey conducted by BCG revealing 50% have considered leaving their jobs due to these very issues.
The Impact of Engagement on Turnover Rates and Performance
Employee engagement has a direct correlation with turnover rates and overall performance. According to a Gallup study, disengaged employees are more likely to leave their jobs, which can prove costly for organisations. Increasing employee engagement can reduce these turnover rates, improve productivity and morale in the workforce, and- ultimately- benefit the company's bottom line.
How you can Engage Deskless Workers with Training
1. Mobile Learning and Smartphone Use
In the past few years, mobile learning has become increasingly popular among deskless workers in the manufacturing industry. The technology allows them to access the educational content at their own convenience. A recent study shows 41% of deskless workers prefer this self-paced training, emphasising the value mobile learning solutions bring.
2. Video Content
Video content is another powerful tool for engaging deskless workers in training. Videos are able to convey complex concepts in a more accessible - not to mention visually appealing - fashion. They can also be viewed on mobile devices, further enhancing the training experience. Businesses should consider incorporating interactive elements such as quizzes or knowledge checks into the video content to promote user engagement and knowledge retention.
3. SMS Communication
SMS has become the go-to method of communication for much of the planet now. It is also the most common method for keeping deskless workers up-to-date regarding their training programs. Texts can be used to deliver reminders, tips and any relevant information needed to reinforce the learning process. A consistent schedule is essential to maintain engagement and enable workers to establish a routine here.
4. Recognition and Rewards
Everyone likes to feel valued. In fact, humans are hardwired to appreciate recognition and rewards, so this is a tactic that can be used to help foster motivation and commitment among the workforce. Try recognising your top performers or offering incentives for reaching specified training milestones.
5. Tailor-Made Training for Remote Workers
Finally, consider tailoring your choice of training program to meet the unique needs and challenges the workers face. Have custom, industry-specific content, so it is relevant and effective. Incorporate scenarios or case studies that they can actually relate to and apply daily.
By taking the time to incorporate these solutions, you ensure your deskless workers receive training that offers them, and your business, genuine value.
For more detailed and actionable advice, download our eBook: “2023 Manufacturing Trends and Strategies for HR and L&D Leaders to Drive Continued Growth”.