Tyson Foods

Published on May 17, 2021
Challenge

Tyson Foods Manufacturing Services was seeking a training solution that would help reduce unplanned production downtime, while also creating a skilled, loyal team to reduce costs, increase revenue, and decrease employee turnover rates. Tyson also needed to standardize learning and development content for more than 8,500 employees in 150 plant locations and provide high-quality training courses that could be easily tracked and documented.


Solution

Tyson Foods has partnered with dss+ since 2009. Tyson utilizes the dss+ eLearning suite™, a comprehensive online training platform that includes a dss+ Learning Management System™, dss+ Authoring Tool™, and 800+ dss+ off-the shelf interactive courses. In addition, dss+ has developed custom-designed maintenance and reliability simulations for Tyson.


Why dss+?

Mike Rogers, Senior Director of Maintenance and Refrigeration, felt called to the position he holds at Tyson. His enthusiasm and dedication to providing excellent, consistent training led him to work closely with his dss+ “partners” to create a more effective training program for Tyson’s Maintenance and Refrigeration employees.


Quality, Engaging Training

When Rogers inherited the dss+ eLearning Suite™ from his predecessor, he was delighted about the quality and thoroughness of the course content. He also appreciated the amount of video in the dss+ eLearning Suite™ courses. This is no small matter for Rogers. Some maintenance technicians have literacy challenges, and Tyson plants employ many people whose first language isn’t English. In fact, Tyson employees speak over 200 different languages. “Seeing” the training through video significantly helps overcome literacy and language barriers.


Consistent Training

When Rogers started in his current position, Tyson’s 150 plants were using over a hundred different training programs. If an employee transferred from one plant to another, they could potentially receive completely different training. Rogers was able to standardize training using the LMS, dss+ courses and custom courses, so every employee at every plant gets the same relevant content. Rogers says, “The training has helped to make the quality of work better.”

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Tracking and Documentation

Rogers sees training as investing in employees— he wants to equip them to be better technicians and better people. A critical factor in determining his return on investment is being able to track and document the various training Tyson workers complete. The dss+ eLearning Suite™ fits the bill by putting all of Tyson’s training on one platform that gives Rogers the reports and performance information he needs. He can track online courses taken, as well as classroom events, simulations, and on-the-job training activities, and all of the data is portable.


Breadth of Training & Reduced Turnover

Rogers trains workers at all levels of experience, from high school and trade school students entering Tyson’s apprenticeship programs to employees who’ve been in the industry for decades. Rogers uses hundreds of different dss+ courses to train employees wherever they are on their career path. Rogers finds that employees are enthusiastic about learning, since Tyson increases compensation as workers reach higher levels of training. The benefit is a two-way street: Tyson employees increase their income and job satisfaction as they become more confident in their skills, while the company experiences a better prepared workforce and reduced employee turnover.


Customized Content

To make learning and development even more relevant to their workforce, Tyson creates custom courses using the dss+ Authoring Tool™. Tyson also partnered with the dss+ production and design simulations team to create 40 custom on topics such as pneumatics, motor controls, gearbox, and hydraulics. Tyson workers complete these simulations after attaining general knowledge and before hands on training. Rogers says the custom simulations give employees a “safe place to fail.”


The Complete Package

Early in his appointment to his current position, Rogers did his due diligence and reviewed the marketplace for other training content and LMS providers. After all of his research, he chose to stay with dss+. The reasons? Rogers says it came down to the variety of training, bandwidth, cost, and excellent customer service. He says the willingness of dss+ to help him reach the Maintenance and Refrigeration training goals was “huge.”


Result

Having an LMS in place at 150 different locations was just the starting point for Rogers. He wanted to optimize the system so every employee could receive the same high-quality training wherever they were located. His drive to develop and retain Tyson’s workers has resulted in less production downtime and reduced employee turnover. Tyson’s employees have also benefited: Rogers and his team have provided them with a refreshed, revamped, and standardized learning and professional development program that sets the bar in the food manufacturing industry.

“The training has helped to make the quality of work better.”
- Mike Rogers

Tyson Foods Inc. is one of the world’s largest food companies and a recognized leader in protein. Founded in 1935 by John W. Tyson and grown under three generations of family leadership, the company has a broad portfolio of products and brands like Tyson®, Jimmy Dean®, Hillshire Farm®, Ball Park®, Wright®, Aidells®, IBP® and State Fair®. Tyson Foods innovates continually to make protein more sustainable, tailor food for everywhere it’s available and raise the world’s expectations for how much good food can do. Through its Core Values, Tyson Foods strives to operate with integrity, create value for its shareholders, customers, communities and team members and serve as a steward of the animals, land and environment entrusted to it.