A thorough understanding of the aftermarket’s training requirements and the challenges it faces will shortly see Delphi Technologies launch its industry- leading e-learning platform.
With complex technologies, such as electrification and advanced driver assistance systems, becoming ever more prevalent in vehicles, there’s never been a greater requirement from independent garages for quality training in these increasingly important areas of repair.
However, while this training is seeing soaring demand, there’s still no let-up in the constant need for tuition in the traditional, age-old subjects that a professional mechanic must be proficient in, such as braking, suspension, ignition and fuelling. But though the necessity for training is widely accepted by the aftermarket and they are willing to embrace it to safeguard their business both now and in the future, garages’ aspirations to enhance their personnel’s skillsets can be hindered by the financial implications. This isn’t usually in relation to the price of the course either, but instead encompasses the revenue lost due to staff being away from the workplace and the costs of accommodation and expenses for those needing to travel to training locations. This outlay is only made more considerable with the more staff who attend.
Unfortunately, the Coronavirus pandemic has worked to amplify the problems of demand outstripping the supply of training and potential cost implications for businesses who wish to pursue training. It has caused a backlog of courses due for delivery across the industry and garages are already reeling from lost income during lockdown.
Delphi Technologies understands these issues and cites them as key drivers in its decision to enhance its already extensive training offering with its new online, e-learning platform. Due for its official launch towards the end of summer, the new e-learning platform has been developed to give users the very best online training experience, providing them with a multitude of benefits.
Phil Mitchell, Technical Services Manager, Delphi Technologies Aftermarket, said: “It’s a logical and significant step for us, and we’re confident that our e-learning platform will be a perfect complement to our practical training.
“There are many advantages, not least that it will allow us to overcome the space limitations of classroom-based training and consequently have the potential to help address the massive shortage of skilled people across the sector in a much shorter timeframe.
“Of course, it’s also incredibly convenient, as not only do delegates not need to travel, but they can access much of the training at a time that suits them, whether that’s in or out of working hours.”
Accessible on all mobile devices…
Initial trials of the platform revealed that testers were keen on the varied content and look of the interface, with Delphi Technologies further refining the platform so that it works on all devices, including on mobile phones, to enhance usability further still. A great deal of emphasis has been placed on the appearance of the platform, with the addition of new modules being easily visible via a scrolling banner, which allows users to instantly see when fresh content is added. It’s planned that new modules will be added every 3-4 weeks.
From launch, the e-learning platform will feature eight training categories that together offer over 200 training modules, with content split between two sections – learning and how-to videos. As with Delphi Technologies’ existing training offering, its content is suitable for everyone from complete novices starting out on their career in the motor industry to seasoned master technicians. For those that do have extensive experience, it provides an efficient, convenient way to brush up their skills, while for those with limited knowledge it allows them to overcome any initial concerns of being out of place amongst their peers and, importantly, allows them to begin learning before they commence practical tuition.
“We do see some attendees who are very conscious that they may not have enough knowledge compared to others, which of course doesn’t matter at all, but it’s something that the online platform does help to overcome,” confirmed Mitchell.
Standalone and blended training…
“What’s particularly good is that the platform provides both standalone and blended training, and as an OE-supplier, it’s very rare for a business like us to offer this facility alongside practical training. We’ve really explored what’s possible with it and how to get the user involved, such as including an element of simulation. For example, there’s an engine simulator that really adds to diagnostic training, where users can virtually replace or isolate different components to find the cause of an issue.”
He continued: “The online content is a great deal larger than our practical training library and represents the wide variety of needs of those accessing it. For example, while we do have considerable IMI course content on there, it includes such modules as simply the right way to jack-up an electric vehicle. It might sound basic, but it’s a question we’re asked a lot due to the unconventional underside of an EV and it’s a great illustration of how someone can use the platform to quickly learn new knowledge. Another might be where someone is in a workshop and they may have an issue with a sensor, they can then quickly watch a video on their phone to determine the answer and be back on the job in minutes.”
Works as an individual’s training hub…
For delegates who are following a training path with Delphi Technologies, the platform also acts as a hub for all the information they may need. It includes a calendar of all courses they may be booked on, establishes a link between the online and practical learning, provides automated access to course notes and, where IMI training is being pursued, includes a facility where mock tests can be completed. This is particularly helpful to users who may have not sat an exam for a very long period and the thought of which is perhaps more of a concern than the actual course content.
Where training is at an advanced, expert level, for example with electric vehicle maintenance, the platform only allows users to access the module once they have completed all other necessary training, be that online or practical.
As with Delphi Technologies’ practical training, all its online course modules have been developed by its five-strong, dedicated training team, who between them have over 90 years’ industry experience, including considerable time at OEMs.
“The team behind the platform is definitely one of the biggest advantages for users,” added Mitchell. “It’s meant that there’s a great deal of content that’s been developed using OE expertise and, in effect, users can enjoy training from experts in the comfort of their own home.”
Importantly, the introduction of the e-learning platform complements Delphi Technologies’ wider sustainability goals. For example, the business is moving away from hefty, printed training books where possible and replacing them with digital alternatives.
“The platform is something we’re very excited about and proud of,” concluded Mitchell. “From feedback we know it’s something that will be of benefit to all those seeking automotive training, no matter their existing skills, and we are positive that it will be one of the very best online training facilities available in our sector. Such is the nature of what mechanics do, there will always be a need for practical training, but an expert online resource will certainly enable many people to expand their skillset with the minimum of fuss. The reach is open-ended and with little more than an internet connection, it will be possible for someone to access Delphi Technologies training wherever they may be in the world.”
For a 12-month log-in to the platform, the cost will be £220 plus VAT.
Further details on the Delphi Technologies e-learning platform will be made available at: www.delphiautoparts.com/gbr/en/training/training