How is hands-on training different from classroom or instructor-led training? Hands-on training means you literally get to perform the tasks in as realistic an environment as possible. Hands-on training is meant to give you real-world experience.

Techniques in Hands-on Training

Experiential learning offers several effective techniques for teaching important safety training concepts and skills to employees

  • On-the-job-training, working side-by-side with someone who already does the job, is very effective for new employees or someone new to a job. This might entail learning how to operate equipment safely or the processes and procedures involved in the day-to-day activities. Demonstrations and apprenticeships are a form of on-the-job-training.
  • Simulations typically involve a trained group practicing how to make decisions for a real-life situation. This type of safety training can help in identifying workplace hazards, how to eliminate them or what controls to put in place.
  • Drills are an excellent way to practice those emergency safety processes – evacuation procedures and emergency medical response.
  • Coaching or one-on-one training focuses on an individual’s needs, which might be appropriate for your safety committee or the safety leaders in your company.

What are the advantages of Hands-on Training?

Like classroom training, hands-on training offers the opportunity to ask questions and get immediate responses. It is personal and allows for individual attention.

  • Effective for training employees on new safety procedures and new equipment.
  • Immediately applicable to an employee’s job.
  • Allows the trainer to immediately evaluate whether a worker has learned how to safely operate machinery or perform tasks in a safe manner.
  • Learning by doing is one of the most effective training methods.
  • Encourages cross training of employees.

What are the Disadvantages of Hands-on Training?

  • Typically, if you have a large group that needs to be trained how to safely operate machinery or how to perform tasks safely, hands-on training is not an effective training technique.
  • Demonstrations provide the foundational ideas, but typically aren’t as effective for training on details.
  • Some safety training is not conducive to hands-on training methods, such as learning specific rules and regulations.