onstruction worker induct off-site

Site induction series – 2. Why you should run your inductions off-site


5 minutes read time

April 21, 2017

When you induct new or returning employees, contractors and visitors do you always run the induction on-site, or do you give the inductee the option to do their learning off-site?

The way you deliver your inductions will depend on various factors like the number of people being inducted, the size of your workplace and the complexity of the health and safety matters to be discussed.

How you deliver your workplace inductions will be decided by the person in charge as they depend on the size and nature of the project.

Induction training can be delivered through on the job training; toolbox talks, pre-start meetings, step by step checklists, induction videos or booklet, emails or a phone conversation.

The inductions we refer to below are run as an ‘online interactive program’ built within a software like WhosOnLocation.

In this blog series, we look at whether it’s best to run your different induction modules (general, site, and task-specific) on-site (at an induction kiosk) or off-site (online through an induction portal).

Off-site inductions

It’s relatively simple and inexpensive to set-up induction modules online so that your contractors, employees, and visitors can complete them before they access your site. 

Running your inductions online and off-site makes it easier to track and maintain entry rights too. For example, if a returning contractor’s induction certificate has expired, you can automatically resend a course for them to complete before they are due on-site.

Welcome induction topics covered

General inductions

General inductions will provide basic information relating to your industry and cover important; organisational Health, and Safety, security, and environmental aspects.

For employees:

Giving new employees the chance to do general inductions off-site is a good way for them to get to know general company culture and procedures before they commence employment. These courses can be based on your companies brand story, ethos, and culture.

For contractors:

If contractors have the chance to do their inductions off-site they can complete them at a time that suits them personally. Also, contractor inductions that are run off-site put the onus on the individual or the company they are contracting for to have completed the required courses before they come on-site. Also, resources like staff time and providing a space to learn are not required if a contractor is fully inducted prior to arrival on-site.

For visitors:

Running general inductions off-site can facilitate a great visitor experience. Briefing visitors on your site can make them feel welcome and help speed up the sign-in process. You could look to provide casual visitors with a non-compulsory, shortened version of your employee induction.

Site inductions

Site-specific inductions are designed around information to do with the site itself, particularly risks and hazards.

Site inductions are often not compulsory and aren’t generally required to be done by visitors.

For employees:

You can include a site-specific induction module with your employee’s general induction if that is made available off-site. Notify a new employee of critical information such as hazards to be aware of in a fire (LPG tank in sector 5), or where your muster point is.

For contractors:

Let contractors do site specific induction off-site when they are likely to be working at more than one site. That way they can look the site specific induction up before they start work there. The contractor can also prioritize the order they will do each module in (i.e. they are working at site 24 first so will complete site 24 induction first).

For visitors:

Whether to give visitors site inductions online depends greatly on the type and purpose of visit. It might be an idea to share some site-specific information (for example emergency exits) with visitors at the same time as they receive their general induction if they are doing one.

Task-specific inductions

Task specific training gives information like hazards, risks, and control measures to people carrying out a certain task at your site.

If it’s relevant, show workers how to do a task analysis as well as the standard operating procedure (SOP) or work procedures.

You can use this induction to highlight any relevant legal responsibilities, codes of practice or technical standards that must be followed while they’re carrying out the task as well.

For employees:

These are usually best done on-site and close to the place where the task will be undertaken. If the task-specific inductions are long or detailed it might be an option to have employees do their initial induction off-site at a time that’s convenient for them, and then offer further training when they are on-site.

For contractors:

It is a good idea to run these task-specific inductions online if contractors are visiting more than one site and particularly if they’re doing the same task at more than one site. Contractors can access their online learning to reference any task-specific inductions as needed.

For visitors:

It’s unlikely a visitor will need a task-specific induction. If they do it’s best to have them complete it when they are on-site and under supervision.

Induction slide 3 Traffic Management

There are many advantages to offering online induction modules for employees, contractors, and visitors to do off-site at a pace and time that suits them best.

Whether you choose to induct online off-site or on-site, or offline on-site or on-site, the reasons for inducting stay the same.

Inductions ensure people at your site are safe and secure, that they know about your organization, what to do on-site, and who to talk to if they have any questions or concerns.

Having a competent induction program means having compliance with Health and Safety and employment legislation.

Take a free, 30 day trial of  WhosOnLocation today to see how our Induction Management feature makes it easy to design inductions, maintain induction records, and how you can control access to any site should these courses not be completed or they have expired.