Part 4

How to create your new starter induction Part 4

In part three we identified the need for a set-up budget to create your induction and a budget for the on-going costs of running your induction through each financial year. We also looked at using external resources and typical timescales for production. 

In part four we want to start helping you with designing your induction material and we are going to start with your PowerPoint slides if you choose to use them.

The obvious starting point for us as a training consultancy is whether your company has templates in place for example Microsoft office e.g. PowerPoint (PP) templates (Or if you use alternative software or systems to present like Prezi or Google hangouts etc).

If you have a marketing department they will have created a brand toolkit and help guide on using the logo, images, fonts, colour palettes, slide format, use of language and words (sometimes called your companies tone of voice).

If you are not the size of company to need a marketing department you do not need to panic. You do not need to get this all created and pay an external company to do it – you have two options;

1 Create the templates yourself in PowerPoint using your company logo, which you should already have, and then choosing a font you like or that represents your company and can be clearly seen if displayed on a screen. I was always told to stay away from fonts like comic sans and apple chancery as these do not necessarily work well for training PowerPoint’s (PP’s) and displaying on a large screen. They also do not look very professional for representing your brand.

2 Ask around the office/company to see if anyone has experience of creating a PowerPoint template and if they could help you do this. I am sure anyone of your team would love the opportunity to shine and show their skills in this area.

Using PowerPoint in training

A huge mistake often made with PowerPoint’s (PP’s) when training is having too much info on your slides. PP Slides should be used to highlight key points/key messages!

That should be all you need on a slide!

Induction training material being presented by Gareth of Brenell Training.

The general rule is three key bullet points max per slide. If you have lots of detail/info/step-by-step guides, then hand-outs or a workbook with this detail would be the alternative. Furthermore, just the top line key points/statements on the slide to discuss is enough. PP’s are a support tool for the trainer, to be used to highlight the key points, make statements and display examples. They are also used to help the trainer identify where they are at each stage of the day, show your group the key points and then using main header slides to help your audience see when you move onto another subject.

Using images on your slides is a great way of relating to your subject when using PP and grabbing your group’s attention, creating discussion, stimulating ideas and, often, as the saying goes “a picture paints a thousand words”.  Websites like Shutterstock are a great way of accessing 1000’s of images that can be easily searched for and can be paid for either for a set amount of images or through a monthly subscription if you need regular updates with new images. Your own marketing department may have a stock of images you can use and an account with Shutterstock already. Alternatively you can hire a professional photographer to take a range of photographs that can be used in your induction slides these could be of your offices, retail store, warehouse operations, your people that will bring the slides and your induction to life.

Here are some example PowerPoint slides to give you some ideas to start with:

As you can see, the cleaner and simpler your message on each slide the easier it is for your group to remember the important points, and font size & colour can always be adjusted to accommodate the amount of text on the screen, just remember if your displaying on a screen or TV we try not reduce to a font size lower than ‘18’ to ensure everyone can read it clearly.

Fun, comedy & shock – If we can we will try to find and use images that can add humour or the funny/lighter side to a given subject. An example might be that you are about to cover a section on Manual handling in the workplace, so the opening slide may have an image that represents the idea that we think we are stronger than we are, it gets the groups attention, is memorable and allows the trainer to refer to good practice and the risks if not followed in the slides that follow.

Or you may want to start a discussion on answering the company telephone, or how to use the company phone systems, or opening your customer conversation using an image like this, it is memorable and as long as the trainer delivering it focuses on the content to be delivered and the final summary messages are clear on good or best practices then they work really well.

Some things to consider

Humour is also very subjective and personal and can easily become offensive to peoples culture, religion, race, gender or beliefs. Consider how other people will read the images you use, especially if you are going for humour and consider getting others opinions before you use it in your slides.
Images (or videos) that shock a group into the reality of risk or what could happen in their role have a place, often Health & Safety subjects can have images & videos showing the outcomes of bad practice or events, however we always need to be mindful of our audience and ultimately what the message is we are trying to get across, making a group feel sick, awkward, frightened or offended is not the outcome to go for in training so it is worth checking with various people in your business before showing in your induction.

How many slides?

So how many slides is the right amount?

We have come across companies that had around 200 slides for each day of their inductions,  it’s not for me to say that each slide did not have a value and this company wanted to make sure everything was covered by the different trainers across the UK however, you need to consider:

Is your slide a holding slide – used to confirm the subject/content you will cover next?

Is your slide to share knowledge in the form of a key point, a learning objective or a statement?

Is your slide an image that shows an example of good & bad practices, makes a statement or shows the outcome?

If it is just to ensure all content is covered in the training you need to rethink your strategy. Hand-outs and workbooks are for details, not slides. Keep your slides clean and unfussy, specific & relevant and where possible fun & engaging for your audience to look at. The trainer can talk around the detail, manage group discussions, or run an activity that identifies what they need to know or learn.

In part 5 we will carry on with designing the induction materials and specifically look at the trainer/facilitation notes and how to write them. For now you can start to create your PowerPoint template and even start to add subject headers and key points to them.

If you’re thinking about putting a new starter induction together,
and need support and resources to get it done,

why not get in touch today and talk to us about your ideas?
Brenell Icon Arrow Down