by Jonathan 'Jonski' Millar, Geomatics and IT Manager
As part of Rubicon Heritage Services Ltd's commitment to Continuing Personal Development (CPD), staff Personal Development Plans (PDP) and enhancing the skill-set, competence and job satisfaction of our in-house staff, we created an 'Intro to Site Survey' training course and rolled it out to new and existing site staff working on the Killaloe Bypass, Shannon Bridge Crossing and R494 Improvement Scheme, Co. Clare last week.
The focus of the training was to give familiarity and confidence to staff using hi-tech survey instruments on site to record archaeological features.
The logistics of giving practical, hands-on field training in the use of Trimble Global Positioning System (GPS) survey kit in the time of Covid-19 required various additional considerations and preparations be made. The team are already working as two separate 'bubbles' on site, with separate welfare facilities, tools, equipment and provided accommodation so the training was split into two sessions to maintain distancing. In addition to providing two sessions:
In addition to theoretical training about the purpose, aims and methodology for site survey, the staff were also educated about the way the survey data is structured and how it then integrates into the wider work of the company. Following the theory lesson, the staff were given a solid foundation in the use of the survey kit itself, with the express intent of enabling them to autonomously start, continue and complete site survey using a GPS Rover Kit and understand the what, why and how of site survey.
Due to the fragile nature of archaeological remains, a 'training area' was created with fake features and site-elements for the staff to practice survey techniques on. This also allowed all participants the same experience and prevented excessive risk to actual archaeology.
All the staff were enthusiastic and engaged and asked great questions which will influence future versions of the course. The training was a great success and the feedback from the staff 'Training Evaluation Forms' was really positive, encouraging and useful for the ongoing development of our in-house training procedures and materials.
Here are some quotes from the forms:
"Really appreciate that the company provided us with GPS training"
"Excellent training session, very informative. Worked examples in handout would be especially useful!"
"More hands-on training would help"
"Training is very useful and the trainer explained everything very well"
Rubicon are committed to giving staff ongoing opportunity to develop new skills and expand their areas of expertise. We believe this is the best way to create a strong, resilient, versatile and happy workforce and we are always on the lookout for enthusiastic, inquisitive people who feel that same way about Archaeology as we do to join our team!
If this sounds like you, please get in touch with firstname.lastname@example.org for more info.
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