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Totara Learn drives up compliance rates in Hertfordshire Community NHS Trust…and the users love it!

Hertfordshire Community NHS Trust provides Community Care across the county’s homes, schools, clinics and community hospitals. Around 2800 staff successfully provide 1.7million patient visits and appointments annually - 97% of its patients would happily recommend the Trust’s services to their friends and family.

The Challenge

The Trust approached Think Learning to design and implement a Learning Management System to deliver over 250 in-house courses, manage the induction of up to 50 new starters every month, and provide access to a further 250 e-learning courses, mostly provided by e-Learning for Healthcare.  

The Trust used a legacy learning management system, combining data from this system with HR/ESR data within a separate business intelligence tool reporting on compliance. An onerous and time-consuming process wasting many hours of staff time every month yet still an improvement over the centrally procured NHS Oracle LMS.

A major challenge is that their LMS has to provide access via mobile devices for around 2000 staff who use mobile to access and update the clinical system. This is a big opportunity to engage with learners providing content and educational support away from Trust sites, critical for community-based staff. 

The legacy LMS was simply unable to meet this challenge.

mobile learning NHS trusts

The Solution

Having implemented Totara Learn at over 25 NHS Trusts, Think Learning were able to effectively migrate existing education data and configure reports. It was essential the switchover from the previous system to Totara was failsafe and compliance reporting was available within the same month the legacy LMS was de-commissioned.

The availability of extensive compliance reporting from go-live (from high-level divisional/cost centre reports down to individual user dashboards) saved the workforce many hours team time, where previously they manually had to manipulate and issue reports.

Supporting NHS Streamlining activities is essential, within just a few days national Core Skills Training Framework competency data was uploaded into ESR, and weekly from then on. Since go-live, the L&D team further refined the data load process, with changes to both ESR and Totara reports speeding up processes.

dashboard report totara NHS trust

With full admin access to Totara and the confidence to use the system, the L&D team created a specific ‘service administrator’ dashboard enabling managers and administrators to monitor training compliance and book training for team members. 

Staff Engagement

An online questionnaire was set up with a link from the front page of the LMS encouraging staff to participate. Over a short period of time, there were 119 responses.

A series of questions gauged satisfaction with the system and Narrative feedback was also sought.

All measures showed a positive improvement, and the ‘Overall Time Taken’ rating demonstrated staff found the new system quicker and easier to navigate.


Average score

Ease of booking training compared to previously

0.71 – significantly easier

Ease of completing e-learning compared to previously

0.68 – significantly easier

Ease of monitoring personal compliance

0.88 – significantly easier

The overall time taken for e-learning, booking etc. compared to previously 

1.77 – much shorter

When questioned what they liked about the system, staff said it was easy to use.

If feedback indicated a learner required further support, the simple user guides were immediately updated and issued to them.

"I just clicked on the icon with the Owl symbol – can’t remember getting an email about that icon - but as there was an owl on the bottom of the email from training prompting me to do the online training - I just followed the owl symbol and everything was there.  Love the fact that there was a link to take me to the right course and I didn't have to select from a choice and risk spending hours doing the "wrong" one.  Love it so far - thank you and well done." - A Trust user

The Results

Since using Totara Learn the Trust achieved significant business and user benefits.
In just 3 months:

  • The Trust has achieved and maintained 94.4% compliance across a rigorous, complex set of national statutory and mandatory training requirements.
  • The administration team have seen first-line support queries reduce by 80%
  • Surveyed users stated that elearning, booking and compliance management was easier and quicker in Totara than the legacy LMS.
  • Non-attendance rates for classroom training more than halved from 10% to 4.7%.
  • The new LMS saves the team up to 3 days each week in staff time.
  • Training rates have increased by 80% from last year with 1,500 employees successfully completed training.

‘Most staff tell us they find the system either ‘easier’ or ‘much easier’ to use and we can see this in huge fall in the number of queries we receive. We estimate this is saving us up to 3 days per week in staff time. On top of this our compliance has risen to its highest ever. We have been so pleased with the benefits that the Totara system has brought us, particularly in terms of improving our users’ experience, which was our primary objective in implementing the system.’ – Jane Trundle, Head of L&D

‘I can be confident now in how much time to allocate to staff to complete their training because they can see exactly what they need to do.’ - Trust Manager

‘It is just SO MUCH BETTER than the old system which was verging on impossible particularly when only used infrequently!’  – A Trust user

Compliance Totara NHS Trust

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