Convergence Training at NSC 2011 Congress and Expo in Philadelphia

At Convergence Training, we’re stomping out bad training everywhere we go. And this year’s National Safety Council (NSC) Congress and Expo in Philadelphia is no exception. Come see us at Booth #3404 for a peek at some of our NEWEST 3D animated safety training courses.

And since the show starts on Halloween, we’ll have a bunch of very special treats for our guests. No, we’re not putting out a dish of hard candy. We’ll have some great prizes and super nice stuff you won’t get from anyone else at the show. Plus, you may just leave the show with some of the best training on the market.

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Preventing Forklift-Caused Product Damage in the Warehouse

Working with our industrial and warehousing clients, we know that product damage can be a costly problem. Damaged products result directly in financial losses, and indirectly in consumer unhappiness when the damaged product reaches the customer. Many businesses seem to accept a somewhat high level of product damage as being part of the cost of doing business, but it seemed to us there could be more education on this topic.

We set out to research the common ways products are damaged by forklifts in a warehouse environment. This is obviously a pretty wide topic to tackle, just due to the diversity of product types, forklifts, and warehouses. So we submitted a questionnaire to several warehousing experts and warehouse managers to try to whittle down the list of product-damaging incidents to those that applied to as many locations as possible.

The result, one year later, is Forklifts: Reducing Product Damage, a unique course that addresses the reasons behind most forklift-caused product damage. Some of the major mistakes covered include:

  • Insufficient fork spread
  • Insufficient fork depth
  • Load instability
  • Momentum-caused tipping
  • Rack placement damage
  • Stabbing and raking of product
  • Operator over-confidence

This course is intended as an introductory course for new warehouse workers, or as a refresher course for experienced drivers. As far as we know, this is the only training course that exists on this subject, and we’re proud to bring such a unique title to the market.

Thanks to the following warehouse/forklift experts who helped us with our research and gave us feedback on our course ideas:

  • Frederick “Rick” Heath: Material handling expert witness in Louisville, KY
  • Bill Guiher of Inflection Point in Cincinnati, OH
  • Don Benson of Warehouse Dashboard, LLC in Portland, OR
  • Dave Schneider: Logistics and supply chain consultant in Fairfax, VA
  • Frank Renshaw: Material handling expert in Florida
  • Daniel Vincent Byrne of ByrneInvent, LLC in Seattle, WA
  • Robert Footlik of Footlik & Associates, Evanston, Illinois

Check out a clip from the new video:

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New Scaffold Training Video the Result of Long Production Process

As Convergence Training has grown over the years in size and technological capability, our attention to detail has also grown more exacting. One of our recent video courses, Supported Scaffold Safety, is a case in point. This course has been our most challenging retail course thus far, in terms of the amount of research on scaffold regulations, visual scaffold component research, storyboard writing, animation, and review of the finished course.

One of the reasons this project was so complex is that there are so many different types of scaffold set-ups. We had to choose which scaffolds we were going to make, and then we had to figure out exactly how to “assemble” the virtual scaffolding so that we were showing correct procedures. For example, when we decided on a large tube-and-coupler scaffold for our primary scaffold in the course, we had to figure out the best way to set up the cross-braces, what kind of ladder system we should use, and what kind of platforms we should use.

Another reason for the amount of research required is that the OSHA scaffold regulations are quite lengthy. Because we were writing an introductory course for construction workers new to working with scaffolds, and because we never want our courses to just be a boring list of regulations, we spent time figuring out the most important scaffold regulations that our audience needed to know and how to structure that information. Good, engaging training takes time to plan.

We had some valuable external assistance on this project. The following people helped us ensure that our training shows realistic depictions of scaffold set-ups, and that our virtual assemblies reflect common construction practices.

  • Paul Gogulski, P.E., and construction expert witness, of Gogulski & Associates
  • Richard Jessup, OSHA Outreach Trainer, Jessup Consulting Group in Houston, TX
  • Ron Haverkost, Senior Safety Officer, Oregon OSHA
  • John Ellis, owner of Independent Scaffold Inspection and Training in Nottingham, UK

View a sample clip from our scaffolding video below:

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6 New Courses Released in August

This past August was a big month for us. Our recent focus on expanding the depth and breadth of our health and safety offerings resulted in the release of six new courses, and our production team is continuing to develop even more material for release in the coming months.

The new courses are currently available from our BuyBetterTraining.com online storefront and from authorized Convergence resellers. Check the links below to view video samples and details of the new material.

Job Hazard Analysis
Machine Guarding
Supported Scaffold Safety
Slips, Trips, and Falls
Trenching & Excavation Safety
Trenching & Excavation Soil Properties

We’ll be launching more new courses in September, so stay tuned. And feel free to contact us with any requests or ideas for courses you’d like to see us build.

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The Power of YouTube…

At this point, there should be no doubt about the reach of videos published to YouTube. To that point, our growing audience includes Singapore’s Workplace Safety and Health Council (WSHC), whose Senior Manager very politely contacted us for permission to post our Compressed Gas Cylinder Safety clip on their iWSH Portal. Permission granted.

Display it in good health, WSHC, and we wish you great success promoting safety in Singapore.

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New School Safety Combo-Pack on Sale

The start of a new school year is just around the corner and that gives us the perfect opportunity to sharpen our knowledge of a number of important safety topics. Our new School Safety Combo-Pack is designed to provide training in areas especially relevant to those working in public or private schools, universities, or day-care centers.

The six DVD set consists of the following courses:

Asbestos Awareness
Bloodborne Pathogens
Electrical Safety General Awareness
Fire Extinguisher Safety
Ladder Safety
Lead-Based Paint Safety

Be prepared. Train your staff on these important safety concepts, practices, and procedures.

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Overhead Crane Training Video Now Available

The newest offering from Convergence Training is called Overhead Crane Basics. This course introduces industrial workers to how floor-controlled overhead industrial cranes operate and the basic safe operating procedures for working with them or around them. Training includes:

  • Types of industrial cranes
  • The role of rigging and slings
  • Necessary inspections of the crane and the rigging components
  • Limit switches
  • Sling angle factors
  • Factors affecting load capacity
  • Factors affecting load stability


One of our primary resources has been Frederick “Rick” Heath, of Heath and Associates. Rick is a forensic expert and consultant on industrial machines, specifically lifting equipment like cranes and forklifts. His long-time expertise in manufacturing and engineering has been of great assistance throughout this production. During the writing portion, he helped us with questions about OSHA regulations and ASME standards and how they pertained to overhead cranes. During the multimedia phase, we worked with Mr. Heath to ensure that the 3D crane animations were visually accurate from a “real world” perspective.

Watch a sample of the crane video below, and see what makes Convergence training different.

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Convergence Has a New YouTube Address

We’ve been posting clips and samples of our training videos to YouTube for years now, and all the while we’ve been using a page that was never really properly branded as “Convergence Training’s YouTube Page.”

Well, now that’s changed. We’ve created a brand new Convergence Training YouTube page, and you can now view our videos or subscribe by visiting Convergence3dVideos on YouTube.

We’ve released 8 new courses already this summer and we’ve been posting samples of everything, so if you’re a subscriber and you want to keep being notified when we upload new videos, you’ll want to head to the new page and re-subscribe there. Next week we’ll be turning kdellavalle’s page back over to kdellavalle, and the Convergence videos will no longer be available there.

Visit http://www.youtube.com/user/Convergence3dVideos to view the new page.

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Overhead Industrial Crane Safety, Hot Work Permit, and Emergency Action Plans Videos Now Available

Hot on the heels of our 5 courses released last month, the Convergence Training production team continues to deliver. We’re proud to announce these 3 NEW Environmental Health and Safety courses now available at BuyBetterTraining.com and soon through our authorized network of resellers:

Overhead Industrial Crane Safety
Hot Work Permit
Emergency Action Plans

Check out this sample video from the Overhead Industrial Crane training below.

These new courses represent our continuing goal of improving the quality of each new course and raise the bar for the entire training industry. So check out all of our newest courses, including Safety & Health Basic, Safety & Health Advanced, Hydraulic Fluid Safety, Hot Work Safety, and Lead-Based Paint Safety at BuyBetterTraining.com.

And we’ve got even more courses lined up for release later this summer, so stay tuned to find out what’s coming next.

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New Heat Stress Awareness Course in Production

It’s that time of year, when temperatures skyrocket and heat-related injuries and lost time at work increase with the rising mercury. And this season, the majority of the U.S. is being hit especially hard with record temperatures. So, since our goal is to get you the training tools you need to help reduce injuries and lower costs, we’re feverishly working on one of our latest courses, Heat Stress Awareness.

Our Heat Stress Awareness course will include important information on:

  • The sources of heat stress for workers
  • The factors that affect workers’ ability to tolerate heat
  • The signs and symptoms of heat stress, including heat exhaustion, heat cramps, heat syncope, heat rashes, and heat fatigue
  • How to measure the risk of heat stress
  • How to reduce the risk of heat stress

We’ll keep you posted on its official release date.

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Rollout of new Convergence Server Enterprise Learning Management System (LMS) a Success

If you’ve been following our blog, you know that we recently released our new Convergence Server Enterprise Learning Management System (LMS). And we’re happy to report that initial customer reviews from the field have been very positive!

As we’ve delivered the LMS to our customers, we’ve heard from people with many different roles: training managers, IT and HR leads, department and team heads, workers, and more. It’s been exciting for us to meet with everyone and to see their own excitement when they realize what our new LMS can do for them.

Here is a small sample of some of the feedback we’ve gotten:

“Convergence is the missing link of training. This new LMS finally brings everything together for me.”

“The LMS paid for itself in one week by reducing employee overtime related to training.” (Woah – this one caught even us off guard!)

“I can see how this will make my job easier.”

If you still haven’t checked out the Convergence Server Enterprise LMS, we invite you to do it now to see why our customers are raving. Key benefits of the LMS include:

  • All employees receive personalized training plan
  • Reporting data available on organization-wide basis
  • Content stored and “owned” locally
  • Administers multiple training activity types
  • Easy content import and creation
  • Ability to share training content
  • Training content updating and versioning
  • Qualifications geared to verify members of team are qualified for job profile
  • Assignment flexibility to match organization’s needs
  • Employee’s training assignments update automatically when employee changes job role
  • System maintains all historical training records
  • Reports allow for immediate access to focused training data
  • Automated, recurrent reports deliver training data to right people at right time
  • Configurable security roles allow for multiple levels of administrators
  • Notification system alerts employees of important training events

Find out more about our new Learning Management System on our website.

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Two New Safety And Health Videos Now For Sale

We’re excited to announce that two new modules have made it through production and are currently available from our online store:

Safety and Health – Basic
Safety and Health – Advanced

Both courses focus on explaining key safety information to employees, and both help fulfill the Safety and Health Programs elective in the OSHA 10 requirements for General Industry. Check out the following sample from the Safety and Health – Basic video:

Safety and Health – Basic topics include:

  • Importance of safety
  • Safety as a team effort
  • Identifying and anticipating hazards
  • Managing hazards
  • Housekeeping
  • Reporting hazards
  • First aid and emergency care
  • Emergency preparedness

Safety and Health – Advanced topics include:

  • Working with machines, tools, and mobile equipment
  • Chemicals, hazard communication, labels, and MSDSs
  • Special jobs and training
  • Ergonomics
  • Machine guarding
  • E-Stops, motion disconnects, and lockout/tagout
  • Personal protective equipment (PPE)
  • Clothing and jewelry

These modules will be an essential addition to your workplace safety training program. They’re both available now from BuyBetterTraining.com

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