Helping Norwood to train their front line staff to support others

A leading Jewish charity in the UK, Norwood supports vulnerable children, families and people with learning disabilities.

Learning Pool helped Norwood create courses that staff would feel at ease with and deliver online learning, reducing costs of face-to-face training.

Solutions provided:
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The Challenge

A leading Jewish charity in the UK, Norwood supports vulnerable children, families and people with learning disabilities.

They have a workforce of over 2,000, made up of 1,250 staff and hundreds of dedicated volunteers, all striving to ensure that everyone can live the life they choose, irrespective of their ability.

Norwood’s main target audience is their front line staff, ranging from support workers in residential or supported living care homes to nursery staff and social workers. From the beginning, uptake among staff was slow due to a significant shortage of IT skills. Fuelling staff resistance, this made completion of courses almost impossible.

The solution

Fear of the unknown was a big issue for the team at Norwood. To help put staff at ease, they made an effort to work closely with all the key stakeholders and managers in the organisation to help shape courses from their valuable knowledge and experience of the learning environment of each service.

The team at Norwood also invested heavily in the instructional and visual design of the courses. A dedicated Instructional Designer was brought in to oversee the creation of learning modules.

All courses went through a structured design, build and sign-off process and pilot modules were tested on their staff for first hand feedback before release. Working in collaboration with their marketing team has also improved the look and feel of the modules; creating a more engaging and professional learning experience.

Impact and results

The word of these successful sessions has spread and open forums and manager meetings have led to the appointment of an IT trainer. The trainer runs weekly workshops to teach employees how to log on and is there to support them through their online training. Drop-in sessions are also offered twice a week and have seen an increase in the level of comfort and confidence in using technology amongst the staff.

The current approach for engaging employees is based on empowerment and from a business perspective, the main objective of condensing the level of instructor-led training within the organisation has been achieved, reducing by 13 days per person with a cost saving of £180,000 per year.

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