What does it take to train 15,000 people, most of whom are on sea, sailing around the world? How would you make a learning management system work on a ship and link with the central system at headquarters? Christian Volkle should know. Chris is Manager – Fleet Training with Holland America Line (HAL) and was in India recently, visiting us at Tata Interactive Systems. Chris was a sailor for many many years before he moved on to his current managerial role. And surprisingly, for someone who has visited about 140 countries, this was his first visit to India.
We caught up with Chris for a brief chat on the training challenges at HAL and their plans around eLearning on their ships.
The entire chat is available as a podcast, ~10 minutes. Download the mp3 to listen to it in a player of your choice or simply use the player below.
Here are some of the key points Chris made.
- The training audience of HAL includes more than 15,000 employees from 68 nationalities, with educational levels ranging from 3rd grade to a PhD or even multiple PhDs.
- HAL is perhaps the first company in the world to link their Learning Management Systems in their ships to the main office through satellite communication systems.
- HAL took a strategic look at training and devised a training plan that focused on three long-term initiatives:
o Move as much of their training as possible to eLearning.
o Install and implement a Learning Management System.
o Have a specially built wired and connected training room in each ship.
- Mobile Learning is an area that Chris would look at closely in the future.
- HAL has a Kid’s Club on their ships, which addresses the entertainment requirements of kids on cruises with their parents. HAL is looking at computer-based educational entertainment products for Kid’s Club.
And here are some photographs, from (and one fantastic one
of) the different ships that HAL operate. Please click on the thumbnails for an expanded view.