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Digital Badging with Southbase Construction

Rewarding the team for a job well done: digital badging with Southbase Construction and eCampus NZ.

This year, national construction company Southbase Construction has teamed up with eCampus NZ to explore exciting new ways to reward their team for completing internal training.

Background

Southbase Construction is a proven performer in New Zealand’s commercial construction industry, delivering large-scale projects throughout the country.  At Southbase Construction, they recognise that the driving force behind the success of any organisation is a skilled workforce, which is why they have developed an internal competency framework and 60 micro-learning modules to support professional development.

Micro-learning courses are bite-sized education opportunities, designed to cut through the jargon and focus on specific industry and workplace skills, from IT to Health and Safety. This kind of training is becoming increasingly popular for employers who want to affirm their commitment to professional development, deliver compliance and consistency across multiple teams, and give employees opportunities to gain new skills and progress their careers.

Rewarding the team for a job well done

Since introducing this highly-structured and forward-thinking approach to professional development in 2017, Southbase Construction has supported, tracked, and celebrated the achievements of hundreds of employees.

“We have awarded 788 competencies to current team members,” says National People & Compliance Manager Carena Parish.

“Our employees are learning and bettering themselves, and we’re able to deliver consistency and a high-quality service to our clients. It’s a win-win situation,” she continues.

Badging with eCampus NZ

This year, eCampus NZ has worked with Southbase Construction to help them design and award digital badges to formally recognise their team’s achievements.

A digital badge is a visual, online image of a skill or competency earned. At eCampus NZ, we take digital badging one step further with Open Badges – online certifications which are stored in an online profile, allowing learners to instantly share their achievements with employers, colleagues, whānau, friends and professional networks.

So far, Southbase Construction has rolled out three Open Badges for employees who successfully complete internal Health, Safety and Environment training. Southbase Construction’s commitment to taking a leadership position within the construction industry regarding occupational Health, Safety and the Environment made this a logical place to start.

“We have grouped certain health and safety competencies and structured them into three levels. When a team member finishes the competencies in each level and provide appropriate evidence, they are awarded a badge,” says Carena.

The Southbase Construction badges

Digital Badges awarded to Southbase Construction employees upon successful completion of their Health, Safety and Environment micro-credentials courses

Level 1 is designed to promote an understanding of Southbase Construction’s approach to Health and Safety across multiple teams, while Levels 2 and 3 are directed at site managers, project managers, and senior site managers.

“These micro-learning courses help us to ensure a consistent approach to risk assessment across different project teams and regions,” says Carena.

The value of badging

Members of the Southbase Construction team who have been awarded a digital badge have enjoyed sharing their achievements online.

“They can put these badges on their CV and share them online. Our team have shared their badges on LinkedIn and have had messages of congratulations from people internally and externally. It’s great exposure,” says Carena.

An employee perspective

“So far I have achieved the Level 1 and Level 2 HS&E competencies. The digital badges are good because they provide recognition of these skills,” says Senior Site Manager Lester Newcombe.

“I shared my digital badges on LinkedIn and got lots of responses from people I don’t even know. I got 1112 reactions when I posted my Level 2 badge!” he continues.

Lester has noticed that the digital badges give team members additional motivation to complete the training.

“Now we have digital badges, more people want to work towards the competencies. It’s a motivational thing,” he says.

Next steps

The launch of the digital badging has also attracted interest from health and safety regulators in New Zealand, who have connected with Southbase Construction on LinkedIn to learn more about their innovative approach to upskilling their workforce.

So, what’s next?

The Health and Safety digital badges are just the starting point,” says Carena.  We are now working on badges for our Commercial team and Operations team to cover the full suite of internal training on offer at Southbase Construction”.

 

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