Online learning the new normal!

Online Learning

by Dr June Dunleavy, General Manager TABMA Training


Just over 3 months ago TABMA members and TABMA Australia the Association was confronted with tight restrictions on how businesses could operate, with the majority of employees “locked down” in their own homes having to learn how to work from home.


Training activities for TABMA Training grounded almost to a complete halt. Our trainers had to quickly adapt to training via ZOOM or, in some cases, small groups of 4 where organisations allowed training to continue. Many of our large corporate clients such as Parkside and HQPlantations ceased all external visits to their premises.


Confronted with such a scenario, how could TABMA Training possibly survive as a Registered Training Organisation (RTO) when 75% of our income is derived from State Government funding?


Our training revenues were collapsing, and some awful decisions were having to be made. Would we be able to continue? Would we have to let staff go or even stand down staff?


The way ahead was at crisis point.


Fortunately, back in early February the TABMA Board led by our Chairman Peter Hutchinson and CEO David Little, had the foresight to approve a business case for TABMA Training to pursue an online learning strategy.


The original intention was to roll out the strategy one unit per month, after all, we would be busy with training and would not be able to devote much time to such a strategy.


However, COVID-19 has presented TABMA Training with a unique opportunity that we never saw coming!


Once the contracts were signed and the various software components and eLearning platform was purchased, the newly formed eLearning TABMA Training team set about ramping up their knowledge in March/April about what makes a good interactive eLearning experience.


Guided by our eLearning specialist Kerri Buttery, not only have our eyes been opened to the possibilities of what eLearning can achieve, the future for TABMA Training is now looking much brighter!


Our first milestone was achieved last week – we now have an interactive eLearning module on Workplace Health and Safety (WHS) that is currently ready for TABMA members to view and provide feedback.


This module will form 1 of a series of 5 modules on WHS for workers and then a further set of 5 WHS modules will be developed for supervisors/managers.


TABMA members will, of course, be offered special access and discounted rates to the WHS modules.


What is next you ask?


Well, we have seen endless possibilities in being able to develop new “products” and programs on our state-of-the-art eLearning platform, which will allow TABMA members to learn anywhere at any time in any location!


Our eLearning team is scoping out potential new programs as we speak which will include fully customised induction programs to suit TABMA members, Certificate IV and Diploma programs in leadership and management, and short course specialist programs, to name just a few. This will also mean TABMA members can study online on demand and with minimal business downtime!


If you would like to view our first eLearning module click here – let us know what you think.


As we become more “expert” in our eLearning capabilities we will keep you informed as to new programs that are developed when they become available.


So, while the COVID-19 has been very confronting, the situation has changed our business model in a way we did not see coming.


Online learning is here to stay and will be the new “norm!”


Just ask us what we can do for you! Stay safe and don’t forget to let us know about what you think of our first eLearning module!