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A Training Needs Analysis Case Study at Heineken’s Royal Brewery, Manchester ‘Refreshing the parts that other training providers cannot reach’

Background
With an annual beer production of 139.2 million hectolitres, Heineken is the third largest brewer in the world.

In the UK Heineken operates four sites; Hereford, Manchester, Tadcaster and Ledbury. Key brands include Fosters, John Smiths, Bulmers, Strongbow, Newcastle Brown, Heineken and Kronenbourg 1664, some of the most iconic drink brands in the marketplace!

 

As part of a total productive maintenance (TPM) project, Mick Scrimshaw, Heineken UK's training consultant, invited a number of providers to discuss how they could carry out a training needs analysis for 40 technicians. This was to identify where the skills gaps were and also assess competence in key areas; MCP Consulting and Training was selected as the chosen partner.

 

The Programme/Methodology

From an initial consultation with the management team an Assessment Centre was set up. This was designed to assess the following:-

• Base Skill levels,
All technicians are required to be at Level 3 in a core discipline and able to demonstrate the minimum skill level in a second discipline.
All technicians should be able to repair 80% of faults.
• Behavioural Skills
Based on Heineken standards
• Up-Skilling Aptitude
Personal development for those who demonstrate an aptitude and attitude
Increased knowledge and responsibility

The assessments were tailored to the needs of the brewery and the workforce, and were developed around existing maintenance tasks, encompassing, mechanical, electrical (both practical and theoretical), electronic and behavioural competences.

The emphasis of the assessment was to carry out work safely, to the right standard in a reasonable length of time. This consisted of a range of tests which could be tailored to the needs of the technician if it were needed, 4 electrical and 4 mechanical with a theory test in both. A further assessment determined the 'trainability' of the candidate. Should a candidate score below a certain level, then they are unlikely to assimilate new skills easily.

Rigs, sample materials, assessment procedure briefing documents and timetables were available in the week prior to the commencement, so technicians could visit in advance to familiarise themselves with the process. An MCP assessor was also available during this time to answer questions on the process. This proved to be a very worthwhile exercise as many of the technicians were nervous about what was to be assessed, how it was to be done, the equipment that would be used but probably the most important issue that came across was what was going to happen with the results.

The assessments ran very smoothly and MCP was pleased to see that all candidates fully engaged themselves in the process, some even enjoyed it!

Results showed that theoretical knowledge needed improving and also technicians required a better understanding of the current 17th edition electrical regulations, to which Heineken policies are currently written in accordance with.

Some of the mechanical technicians will require a more rigorous electrical training program; however Heineken will need to identify the most suitable candidates.

The wealth and depth of knowledge displayed by the technicians was impressive and should be utilised to enhance on-the-job training.

As part of the behavioural skills assessment, candidates were asked to describe a project or intervention they had made which benefited the business. Due to the successful TPM initiative that has been adopted by Heineken this was a very successful exercise which almost all of the technicians were able to partake to a high level. Those that were new to the company could give examples from previous employers.

Outcome
The Training Needs Analysis exercise illustrated that the culture within Heineken is extremely positive, with good team working and an emphasis on face to face and written communication both on technician level and management level.

Technicians have a clear understanding with regards to the urgency and importance of tasks and the criticality of assets, and have a pro-active approach to work. Technicians who have worked on Continuous Improvement projects are enthusiastic and appreciate the development opportunities that arise from CI.

The assessment demonstrated that underpinning knowledge was an area for further development with a more logical, knowledge-based approach required. For example, many technicians used their valuable experience to problem solve and fault find rather than proven, logical techniques. Whilst these skills should be captured and shared with all craft technicians to improve fault-finding, a logical approach will reduce the average time to repair.

Recommendations
Having undertaken the TNA exercise, MCP and Heineken identified a range of potential training programmes which will develop the skills of the technicians, helping them to fault find quicker and ultimately reduce the average time to repair. These include:

• Problem Solving and Logical Approach to Fault Finding
• Reading and Interpreting Electrical Drawings
• Selection and use of Electrical Test Equipment
• An introduction to Automation
• 'Train the Trainer' Training

On the job training is a crucial part of the development process. All the 'off-job' training has a competency assessment as sign-off and this is followed up immediately with 'on-job' practice using the more skilled technicians. As part of this process suitable trainers and assessors were also identified from the team to undertake a comprehensive training and coaching programme.

Potential on-Job Training is much more likely to produce long term benefits for the technicians and for the company. This will be delivered by selected Heineken technicians on their shifts.

Conclusion
Training across an organisation demands a holistic approach research, analysis assessment, and planning and delivery across a number of audiences. The Heineken team having seen the benefits of TNA exercises are planning to roll them out across the other Heineken UK sites.
Contact Sarah James, MCP Consulting and Training, Phone: +44 (0) 121 506 9034
Mailto:sjames@mcpeurope.com  www.mcpeurope.com