How NDT Training Adapted to the COVID-19 Pandemic

Like so many other businesses, TWI Training had to adapt in order to cope with the restrictions while still providing essential training and certification for critical infrastructure workers.

TWI Training’s NDT Training Programme Manager, Alexander Tsougranis explains how NDT training adapted to the challenge, what we learnt and how we continue to provide services to our customers:

“We all know how challenging 2020 was for individuals across the globe on a personal and professional level as well as for businesses across all sectors. Education and training were no different and were hit hard by the pandemic, especially the sectors requiring practical training such as NDT training.

 At the same time, this pandemic was a reason for radical changes. Although we were all familiar with ‘distance learning’ and ‘remote training,’ they are now implemented by training organisations at a scale never seen before. They are also adopted by universities and schools across the world and new technologies are becoming available to support these operations.

During this period, TWI Training is fully supporting its customers in many different ways. We maintain our facilities operating under strict Covid-19 safety policies, which is highly important for key workers in the oil and gas sector and other key industrial areas. In addition, we are supporting all customers who wish to have remote or online training by launching new products through the TWI Virtual Academy. I am quite proud to say that TWI Training is the leader in this area. Now all training programmes, have the most popular courses available in many formats.

In regards to NDT training, in addition to our already available blended learning courses (PAUT, ToFD, UT, Data Analysis for PAUT and ToFD), during the pandemic we launched our penetrant testing (PT) and magnetic testing (MT) blended learning courses; both of them approved by CSWIP and PCN certification bodies. We also worked hard in cooperation with certification bodies in order to offer a combined option, which reduces the classroom attendance for both methods to one week, including the certification exams. This has now become the ‘MT/PT combined’ offering.

In addition, we delivered many courses through web-based meeting platforms such as Zoom or MS Teams - MT, PT, RI, PAUT. Our customers can also benefit from the fact that most online courses are modular, so they can mix and match modules to create bespoke training solutions for their staff, such as appreciation courses in certain methods and sectors. We also used this time constructively to develop more online courses, which we will announce shortly, as well as improving our operations with the addition of UK online bookings through the TWI portal and by introducing online exams for a number of courses, which reduces significantly the exam turnaround time.

In regards to cost, we reduced the cost of enrolling to online courses during the lockdown period to the minimum in order to support customers getting through this difficult period and we reduced the prices on many of our online products.

We are also now looking at the exam results and passing rates and I can confidently say that the passing rates are improved. The main reasons being that the training material is available to candidates for a much longer time and the fact that we utilise different learning approaches for all types of learners, such as visual, auditory and kinaesthetic. A case study on this will be published shortly.

I would like to thank all our customers who supported us and demonstrated confidence in our new products and innovations. We will keep adding value to the industry and individuals through our innovative approach to products and services.”

Alexander Tsougranis (NDT Training Programme Manager)