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This section describes our approach to training in Nuclear Generation.

Site Licence Condition 12, as directed by the UK nuclear regulating body, Office for Nuclear Regulation (ONR), requires EDF Energy to only use Suitably Qualified and Experienced Personnel (SQEP) to independently perform safety related work. This requirement has been achieved through the implementation of a systematic approach to training which:

  • Ensures only qualified staff can work independently.
  • Ensures training is targeted at maintaining and improving performance
  • Included significant investment in infrastructure
  • Nuclear power academy at Barnwood
  • Training buildings and training departments at each power station.
  • New and enhanced simulators at each power station.
  • Included development of a nuclear professionalism programme covering nuclear safety culture and human performance.
  • Establishment of an independent training standards accreditation board reporting into the Nuclear Generation Board to oversee the process.

A training policy statement (BEG/POL/005) sets the direction and approach. This policy lays the foundations for utilising training for performance improvement, the implementation of the systematic approach to training, line ownership, establishment of training committees and accreditation against internationally recognised training objectives and criteria.

Our training vision is to:

  • Create world leading nuclear professionals.
  • Equip our people with the knowledge, skills and behaviours to support a high performing business.

Our training mission is to:

  • Provide the right training to the right people at the right time.

EDF Energy recognises that training plays a key role in supporting safe and reliable plant operation via the knowledge and skills of its employees.  EDF Energy is committed to and accountable for developing and sustaining training programmes that meet organisational and personnel needs. 

Within EDF Energy the Systematic Approach to Training is essential to ensure that:

  • Training needs are accurately identified through job and task analysis.
  • Training objectives are defined according to job performance requirements.
  • Training materials, methods and instructor lesson plans are developed to address learning objectives.
  • Training is effectively delivered to the right audience and line managers are integrally involved.
  • Training is evaluated using the ‘Kirkpatrick Model’ which includes: trainee feedback, assessments at end of training sessions to determine objectives of training have been met (such as examination), post training in the field evaluations to ensure knowledge and skills have been transferred to the workplace, and performance evaluations to confirm business improvements have occurred.

While the training organisation owns this process, managers and supervisors have a responsibility to be involved and to support all phases of this process in order to achieve quality training for their workforce.

As noted in BEG/POL/005, Training Policy, “All personnel within the organisation have a responsibility and a role to play in the Systematic Approach to Training to deliver these key elements.”  Below is a table of responsibilities for the Managers and Supervisors:

SAT Process Managers / Supervisors Role
Analysis Communicate expectations
Monitor performance
Address performance shortfalls
Provide recommendations
Internalise SAT fundamentals
Identify training needs
Design Lead training committees
Approve learning objectives
Review tests and related materials
Development Approve selected training materials
Support ‘dry run’ sessions
Implementation Conduct pre-training briefs, post-training debriefs and kick-offs
Observe training and provide feedback
Evaluate instructor performance
Evaluate worker and staff performance
Attend continuing training
Facilitate exercise critiques
Select On-Job Trainers and Task Performance Evaluators
Monitor task performance evaluations
Enforce qualification standards
Award qualifications
Apply qualifications to work assignment
Evaluation Provide critical feedback
Sponsor self-assessments
Ensure timely corrective actions
Integrate training and line indicators
Support timely revisions
Provide oversight

A ‘Nuclear Power Academy’ provides a focus for the company wide improvements, with the role of:

  • Setting the fleet standards.
  • Developing and delivering the initial technical training programmes for engineering, maintenance and operations.
  • Developing and delivering a fleet certified instructor programme.
  • Managing the accreditation programme.
  • Coordinating the fleet training improvement programme and providing governance.
  • Establishing a central apprentice programme for the fleet.
  • Each power station and central engineering has established:
    • A training department and training facilities (classrooms, workshops with simulators/rigs) with a mandate to provide training which maintained/enhanced staff capability.
    • Line management led training committees to drive the training improvement programmes.

EDF Energy Nuclear Generation has adopted a hierarchy of committees at each of its power stations and centrally, to guide and monitor the training function and to address the various levels of training oversight and ownership. The committee’s goal should always be optimising training to improve performance.

The Strategic Training Committees (STC) involve the highest level of leadership at the station and in Central Engineering, concentrating on strategic issues, such as ensuring that training is improving staff and plant performance, and promoting ownership and stewardship of training by line management.

Training Advisory Committees focus on one particular training programme and include the Training Programme Owner and CRC chairs as members.  It is the committee’s responsibility to promote excellence in training and to evaluate the programme’s effectiveness.

The Curriculum Review Committee (CRC) establishes and reviews training plans, approves learning objectives, reviews course feedback and determines the details of content, scheduling, delivery and evaluation of training programme events.

The use of self assessments is a tool used by the organisation to identify areas for improvement or opportunities for replication of good practices. A programme of training self assessments is undertaken by each area of the business to determine alignment with the training objectives and criteria. The output from these form a key input to the training committees.

There are two key phases to the accreditation process. The Accreditation team visit (ATV) followed by the Training Standards and Accreditation Board (TSAB).

The purpose of an Accreditation Team Visit (ATV) is to ascertain how plant training and personnel qualification programmes implement the systematic approach to training and address the accreditation objectives. The team is comprised of independent experts who can provide an objective view of the conduct of training. The output from this visit is a primary input into the TSAB Meeting.

The TSAB will be solely concerned with making accreditation decisions on the training programmes within the scope of the process.  The decisions will be based on a combination of evidence provided via the previous relevant TSAB Report, the Stations self assessment, the ATV Report, the ATV Team Leader’s verbal report, and the TSAB questioning of the site representatives at the meeting.

The TSAB members sit in judgement of the capability and demonstrated performance of the evaluated line and training organisations to ensure nuclear personnel are being trained and qualified to perform their assigned activities safely, reliably, and efficiently.

By granting accreditation or accreditation renewal, the TSAB is making a judgement on the ability of the site to carry out effective training for the next four years.

In conclusion, EDF Energy considers training an effective tool to improve the professional performance of individuals and, as a consequence, maintaining and improving safety, reliability and efficiency of EDF Energy’s operating nuclear power plants.