Metra today entered into an intergovernmental agreement with Western Illinois University’s Center for the Application of Information Technologies (CAIT) to provide computer-based training courses for employees throughout the Metra system.
Under the agreement presented at today’s meeting of the Metra Board of Directors, CAIT will work with Metra’s Workforce Education and Training team to create two interactive online courses and ultimately assist Metra in the creation of a strategic plan and documentation for the implementation of a comprehensive online training system. CAIT will also provide online hosting and maintenance services for these courses.
“CAIT has more than 20 years of experience and success in developing online training for both government and corporate clients,” Metra Executive Director Philip A. Pagano said. “This partnership will enable Metra to better document and evaluate our training programs while improving employee access to the training itself. We believe CAIT’s ability to provide customized services will prove to be a cost-effective solution for our ongoing training needs.”
CAIT’s client roster includes: the Illinois Law Enforcement Training and Standards Board, the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services, McDonald’s Corporation, Abbott Laboratories, Illinois Century Network, Illinois Community College Board and the Illinois Attorney General’s Office.
Partnering with CAIT will allow Metra to build a centralized database-driven training system. In addition to improving Metra’s ability to track and document its training programs, the use of online training will increase Metra’s flexibility in scheduling training sessions for its employees and cut costs by eliminating the need to staff training classes.
The first two courses developed with CAIT will cover drug and alcohol awareness for Metra supervisors and railroad operating practices for all Metra transportation, track, signal and mechanical employees. Both courses will be designed to meet Department of Transportation and Federal Railroad Administration training requirements. Both online courses are scheduled to be fully operational in 2010.