Generating a digital-by-default learning culture for the Office for Nuclear Regulation

The Office for Nuclear Regulation (ONR) is the body responsible for regulating nuclear safety and security in the UK.

It employs more than 600 staff. Of those, around half work in specialist regulatory roles, such as nuclear safety, security and safeguards inspectors, while the other half are in professions like finance, IT and HR.

After experimenting with a self-hosted Moodle site, ONR was ready to make the step forward to a digital-by-default learning experience for all staff. It wanted to launch the ONR Academy, a learning platform to encapsulate its new ethos and serve as a one-stop shop for anything L&D-related across the organisation.

High on the agenda were measures to update its processes for booking training and monitoring attendances.

ONR also needed:

  • An LMS that would be easy to manage and administer.
  • An intuitive, secure and interactive platform to provide exceptional user experience.
  • To curate all of its learning and user-generated content.
  • More efficient processes around booking classroom courses, virtual courses and examinations, as well as handling course feedback.
  • A better way of recording training processes and reporting on them.
  • Personal learning logs so that individuals and their managers can keep track of their professional development.

Bringing coherence and consistency to training processes

Following a tender process and an initial discovery workshop, we started work on developing a new bespoke Totara Learn platform.

We created a custom user experience to make it easier for nuclear inspectors and other learners to find and book the training they need. The user interface is designed in accordance with the ONR brand guidelines, which encourages engagement and differentiates the LMS from external systems ONR staff encounter.

Using Totara Learner’s seminar management functionality, we created a booking system that improves user experience for inspectors and makes it far easier for them to access the training they need.

Now the ONR Academy provides a single platform for browsing and booking internal and external training, a much simpler booking process, and personalised dashboards showing each inspector where they are in their training journey.

The result is a more consistent and coherent way of recording training processes and a better way of reporting on them to key stakeholders.

We provided training and ongoing support for the ONR administrators to help with the smooth transition to a digital-by-default system, build confidence in using the Totara Learn platform and assist with management of the LMS as needed.

We developed the site in accordance with the ONR’s stringent security policies to deliver a learning platform befitting the organisation’s pivotal role within the UK nuclear industry.

100% learner engagement

ONR’s new Totara Learn LMS has a 100% record of learner engagement, with every single staff member having used ONR Academy within the past three months. This impact on learning engagement has been maintained consistently since the site was launched.

With improvement and digitalisation of ONR’s booking processes, it now takes staff just a couple of minutes to book their place a training course, which makes it far easier for nuclear inspectors to access learning.

We’ve also made it much simpler for ONR administrative staff to compile reports that demonstrate training and compliance levels, which in turn makes it easier for the organisation to maintain accountability to the nuclear industry and other stakeholders.

“Synergy Learning was brilliant – really knowledgeable, approachable and friendly. They were very professional in how they interpreted what we wanted to achieve and guided us on the best way to fulfil that, as well as helping us overcome barriers along the way. The result has been really good engagement among our learners and senior management.”

Kay Collier | Head of Academy

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