Dutch Road Assistance Training

A blended and flexible programme for road assistants

Each spring ANWB needs to train around 400 road assistants who will attend and support holiday travellers in Europe.

To effectively onboard these assistants, RMMBR has developed an entirely new blended training programme with extensive online training components (created in Articulate), combined with flexible workshops and realistic exercises.

The blended training is extremely flexible for new hires to fit  into their busy (study) agendas, before they start their shifts. Over 33 hours of online case-study material is combined with realistic workshops in evenings and on weekends. Using ANWB’s LMS the new hires select which sessions they attend. Online tests and mentor reports ensure study progress.

After a successful pilot in 2018, ANWB and RMMBR have completely changed the way of training within the organisation; from instructor-led to learner-controlled; from offline to blended. The training capacity has been increased by nearly 30%, the programme duration has been shortened from 6 to 4 weeks. Meanwhile, customer satisfaction score NPS has increased from 31 to 42.

Working professionally

About ANWB

With over 4 million members, the Royal Dutch Tourist Association ANWB is the largest association in the Netherlands.

The association aims to represent the interests of its members in the field of recreation, tourism, traffic and transport.

ANWB’s core activities are: assistance, information, travel and insurance.

The most well-known services are the Road Assistance, Emergency Centre with its support points abroad, Multi-media publications, Traffic information, Insurance, ANWB travel and the ANWB stores.

Working professionally

Working at the ANWB Emergency Centre

ANWB’s Emergency Center assists travellers in Europe when they are in need of help. This ranges from a flat tyre on a French motorway to natural disasters.

To handle the summer peak, ANWB hires around 400 extra employees each year. The largest part, around 180, will work at the VHV-Bu department: Vehicle Assistance – Abroad. Employees’ daily work at this department typically consists of:

  • Attending calls travellers;
  • Ensuring travellers are safe;
  • Performing problem analyses;
  • Finding the best solution, given the practical and financial possibilities;
  • Realising the selected solution.
  • Common solutions include car rental, reimbursement of alternative transportation, booking a flight, transportation of broken vehicles, and car repair.

Travellers are often under stress when calling the Emergency Centre, which adds an extra dimension in finding the best solution.

The new hires need to have applicable knowledge of the insurance conditions as well as apply analytical and communicational skills in order to find a satisfactory solution for both the traveller as well as ANWB.

The original training

The 2017 training programme consisted of:

  • a welcome evening;
  • a homework package;
  • 2 week classroom training;
  • 4 week workplace practice.

After these 6 weeks the employee was scheduled for 100% capacity in the Alarm Centre’s roster.

The original training programme is entirely instructor-led. The instructors work indepently from eachother and each instructor has his or her own approach.

Working professionally

ANWB’s question

ANWB asked RMMBR to modernise their blended induction programme for the seasonal workers.

The previous onboarding program took too much time and was perceived as old-fashioned, but it was considered solid and it worked.

Goals Year 1 (Pilot)

  • Shorten training time: ANWB challenged RMMBR to shorten the training time with 25-50%
  • Maintain or improve results: The new programme should deliver the same results as the original programme.
  • Modernisation: The new training should make use of modern online technology (e-learning) and training formats, as well as have a professional look&feel to it.

Goals Year 2

  • Flexibility: Provide maximum logistic flexibility for the new hires and trainers by delivering more (online) self study without losing insight and control over the progress and quality of training.
Working professionally

Solutions

Shorten learning time:

The desire to shorten the training with the same amount of trainers means that more people will be trained at the same time. How? Two ways:

  1. More efficient training
    By using teaching methods such as online self-study, practical exercises and working in pairs, one teacher can supervise two classes at the same time. This results in an increase of the trainer capacity (the amount of training hours one trainer delivers).
  2. Learning more effectively
    To allow the student to learn as effectively as possible, we use practical training. This means that participants already listen to live conversations early in the programme and

work with assignments themselves in a training environment.

Learning, reflecting, and discussing increase the learning effect. By performing assignments together, solving difficult customer cases, analysing and discussing each other’s conversations, employees learn faster and better. New hires are earlier prepared for the real work.

The new way of training requires a different approach from the current trainers; less subject matter experts, more facilitators. The trainers and supervisors will therefore be trained on the new training programme. They are also actively involved in the re-designing of the programme.

Year 1 (2018)

Pilot

ANWB decided to start with a pilot before completely changing their most fundamental training. The idea was to select one class of 20 new hires to do the New Training.

This new training contained the following changes:

  • Efficiency
    We renewed and shortened the training capacity by introducing more self studying. One trainer could train more new hires.
  • More dynamic classroom training
    We re-designed the classroom trainings by integrating reality into the training. More interactions, real audio cases, real-life examples and exercises.
  • Online self study
    We introduced a case-based, adaptive, aproach in e-learning with the case simulator: a collection of real life case studies embedded in a series of questions and tutorail videos. New hires were scored on three KPIs, the same ones as in their future work.
  • Practical approach
    By applying more case based training and having student listen-in and participate earlier in real life support calls as from week 1 instead of at the end in the previous trainin, we were able to get the students sooner into the real work.

Year 2 (2019)

Attracting the best

Meanwhile, the customer care market in Holland had become more competitive. ANWB was struggling each year to hire enough new talent to assist all Dutch road travellers during their vacations.

When selecting new hires, ANWB had strict practical selection criteria; they had to be able to attend all sessions, Monday to Friday, from 9 to 5. University exams often stood in the way between ANWB and a talented new hire.

Overcoming this lack of flexibility was going to be the biggest challenge for 2019.

IT Architecture
An obstacle that was too high in 2018, had suddenly been lowered in 2019: ANWB recognised the need to update their online logistics and gave their NetDimensions LMS a significant update, as well their client systems.

It was now possible for new hires to log in from home to all necessary systems, including the LMS.

Everything was set for the next step: Learning when ever and where ever the new hire wanted.

Flexible training

Early 2019 RMMBR and ANWB conducted several design sessions with trainers, instructional designers and ANWB managers, to use the momentum of the new training and take it to the next step. Right from the start two ground rules were established:

  • Since ANWB is a 24/7 organisation (holiday travellers don’t adhere to office hours), all logistics were in place to offer truly flexible training. New hires usually tend to have prior daytime commitments before starting a new job, so classroom sessions were planned during the evenings and in weekends to accomdate for the personal agendas. Online training was possible whenever the new hires wanted, even before they started.
  • The idea of fixed classes was dismissed: new hires started in waves (whenever the recruitment agency had selected a group) and they were responsible for planning their own training programme, based on their own personal agendas.
Working professionally

Results of Year 1 & 2 (2018, 2019)

  • A total of 249 new hires have been trained in a new, blended format.
  • The amount of training time has been reduced from 6 weeks to 4 weeks, while delivering the same quality to the workplace
  • The capacity of the nrew hire training has almost doubled. ANWB is now able to produce a total of 17,385 hours of new hire training.
  • The trainer capacity increased by nearly 30%
  • The NPS score during this project has increased with 11 points (from 31 to the actual 42).

Learnings

  • Blended learning
  • Case-based Leren
  • Leerstrategie / Advies
  • Online academies
  • Online leren
  • Serious gaming

Themes

  • Applicatietraining
  • Onboarding
  • Vaardigheidstraining

Techniek

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