A state department of intellectual and developmental disabilities oversees the management of training for provider agencies across the state. Through individual-centered practices, the department ensures agencies and the 20,000+ direct support professionals and staff across the state are helping people with intellectual and developmental disabilities experience optimal health and quality of life.
For years, all training for intellectual and developmental disability agencies in the state was done in a classroom setting. The department trained individuals to deliver training for staff and licensed providers. Over time, this caused issues when staff was reassigned.
“You had to continually train trainers,” says the Director of Staff Development. “If you left an agency or people were reassigned and are no longer the trainer, then you have to train people again.”
“With classroom training, you had to continually train trainers when people left an agency.”
With such a diverse range of professionals and licensed providers who require mandatory training, it was also a challenge to provide a library of content spanning multiple roles and responsibilities. When the state department initially tried online learning, the content was too narrow and did not cover enough training requirements.
Another issue with previous training formats was the difficulty in compiling large reports. Agencies in the state wanted to manage their own assigning, completing, and tracking of records, but the state department also had to run their own reports on training. Previous training formats and other learning management systems were not capable of performing this task—causing the department to resort to more complicated and time consuming reporting practices using separate systems.
In 2008, to promote a more streamlined process for training, the federal and state government mandated a web-based training program for the state department. After choosing a basic online training platform in 2009, the department switched over to Relias Learning in January of 2013. From the time of its implementation, Relias training has proven to provide agencies in the state with the necessary diversity in course content.'
“We have had a lot of comments from our agencies that really liked the coursework,” says the Director of Staff Development, “The quality of training is very good. It’s directed at adult learners through interactive screens.”
Besides the quality of content, the breadth of training has also helped meet the needs of various staff and licensed providers. “The number of courses in the catalog has been a big plus. The Relias catalog provides access to continuing education for people who have licenses.” The Director of Staff Development also went on to say the ability to update curriculum has been a great benefit. The department can now tailor courses to meet specific needs of agencies.
The state department is also now able to streamline state and agency reporting all in one system. According to the Director of Staff Development, this was a huge benefit and major reason for choosing Relias Learning.
The state department was able to go live on the Relias learning management system (LMS) within four months. Through weekly webinars, the Relias support team helped the department:
- Implement 20,000 users on to the Relias LMS
- Transition over old records from the previous provider
- Report on both an agency, and overall state level
“Relias was very conscientious about making sure we had plenty of webinars and trainings to get the agencies familiar with the new system,” explains the Director of Staff Development. “That was really good customer service, and we’ve heard comments from our agencies on that.”