East Midlands Railway adopts SiteSentinel for 3 depots
We would like to welcome EMR to the
SiteSentinel community. EMR have commissioned Lucid to develop SiteSentinel inductions
for their Etches Park, Eastcroft, and Neville Hill depots.
East Midlands Railway, based in Derby, provides services across the East Midlands, and run services between the east midlands and London.
The SiteSentinel platform provides an online induction, test and administration interface. The system is designed to consistently deliver relevant, high-quality information using text, photos, video and illustrations. SiteSentinel provides an audit trail of site inductions for staff, visitors, and contractors.
A few months back we blogged about the headway we, as well as the likes of Zonegreen and Alcumus Sypol, are making in the area of digitising the train depot… Our online worksite safety induction solution Site Sentinel allows depot visitors to complete an induction before they arrive on site, meaning they arrive equipped and ready for work. What better way to optimise the digital technology available to us?
However, what if visitors first language isn’t English? To date, we’ve always run Site Sentinel in English, however, more and more site visitors need the worksite induction in their native language to ensure safety critical details are not ‘lost in translation’.
This development is unsurprising, the range of skills required in a train depot is vast… there are train engineers, construction workers, electricians, safety managers and administrative staff, not to mention a whole heap of specialist rail contractors and visitors who enter the depot each day. We can’t expect each one of these people to have a high standard of English literacy – but neither can we afford for them to misunderstand or misinterpret the safety induction briefing.
So, what do we do? Well if you decide to translate your induction, you’ll need technical language support and a good deal of technical proofreading. Google Translate – albeit a great way to quickly and cheaply translate big pieces of text – won’t suffice – it could lead to unintelligible or, worse still, misleading statements. The devil is in the detail and technical accuracy is key.
Once you’ve had the site induction translated, a little user testing wouldn’t go amiss either… the text may make sense to you, but it needs to be trialled with different people to ensure the testing is sufficiently robust.
But… once this is all in place, there’s no reason why Site Sentinel can’t be rolled out in a whole variety of different languages. You could even give people the choice to read it in more than one language – just for good measure!
Have you translated safety materials into different languages? What challenges have you faced?
There’s an old adage in training: “tell them what you’re going to tell them, tell them, tell them what you’ve told them.”
Sound a little odd? Well there’s a sound educational basis for the one-liner – most of us need time to assimilate new knowledge and getting to grips with new concepts requires time. There is only a certain amount of information that our working memory can absorb in any one training session – in psychology circles this is known as the “cognitive load” – the limited mental capacity that we have for processing new material.
So, why do companies still insist on waiting for contractors to turn up to their worksite, ‘hosepipe’ information at them, walk them around unfamiliar surroundings pointing at things, and then let them loose on site, expecting they’ve fully comprehended everything that’s been said?
The best approach to site induction is to deliver detailed information BEFORE visitors arrive on site, using text, photos, diagrams etc. Of particular importance is the provision of a site schematic – an overview of the ‘shape’ of the site. People new to the site will need this to make sense of any site walk-around. They need a context into which they can place the physical experience of a site visit.
There is also certain information that visitors and contractors might need beforehand, such as: Where is the site? Which entrance should I use? How do I get in? What are the relevant telephone numbers? What equipment should I bring? Etc.
Lastly, think of visitors and contractors from outside of high hazard industries like rail. For example, are they aware of the strict ultra-low alcohol level required by the rail industry? Would you really expect a contractor, upon arriving at site and being told of the level, to throw their hand in the air and say, “Oops, sorry, I went out drinking last night – I can’t come on site…” Highly unlikely!
So, we suggest the best worksite induction looks something like this:
Step 1 – Online briefing and test before arrival;
Step 2 – Quick verbal test and correction of any incorrect test results;
Step 3 – Site walk-around to reinforce and embed information.