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Consider the following information related to training technicians at Pacific Gas & Electric.
A series of pipelines managed by Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E) move natural gas across the state of California, providing a source of energy to over 4 million customers. Valve operators, equipment that automatically monitors and adjusts the pipeline pressure or gas flow, help ensure the safe flow of gas through the pipelines. Technicians need to perform scheduled maintenance on these valves to ensure they avoid over-pressuring or under-pressurizing the pipelines, which could cause them to rupture. PG&E redesigned its current training program that focused on these valves. It did so because the training was instructor-led in the classroom using props, as opposed to having technicians working with actual valves. PG&E also decided that the training did not allow the technicians enough time to practice. Finally, it was interested in reducing the number of times technicians had to redo maintenance tasks that were performed incorrectly and the time it took to complete maintenance tasks.
PG&E’s new training program uses a 3-D simulation along with instructor-led training. The simulation shows how the valve actually operates and can simulate the tasks that technicians perform such as assembling, disassembling, and cleaning the valve. Technicians can see what happens inside the valve when they make adjustments. The simulation includes a tutorial that guides the technician through the task and a test that can be used to assess whether the technician can correctly perform the task. Technicians are also able to access the simulation on their iPad when they are working on a pipeline.
Based on the above information, respond to the following questions as well as respond to your colleagues.
What outcomes should PG&E collect to determine the effectiveness of the new training program? What evaluation design should it use? Explain your choice of outcomes and design.
Provide your initial response in an audio format or a video format. (Use Kaltura) Then, your remaining two responses may be text-based. Remember, your remaining responses must be on different days in order to earn full credit.
Source: Based on “Training Top 125 2018 Best Practices & Outstanding Training Initiatives, Pacific Gas & Electric: Becker Valve Operator 3-D Simulator,” training (January/February 2018), pp. 92-93.
Adapted from: Noe, R. A. (2020). Employee Training & Development. [VitalSource Bookshelf]. Retrieved from https://bookshelf.vitalsource.com/#/books/9781260140279/ (Links to an external site.) pp. 293-294.
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