FM Global needed to find an effective, realistic learning environment for their newly hired consultant engineers. The company bases its business model on these engineers accurately evaluating thousands of client properties worldwide for property risks and associated business-continuity exposures. While learners could develop some of the required skills in classroom settings and during on-the-job training, a simulated learning environment allows for a much steeper learning curve, drives elevated retention rates, and improves learner confidence. In 2011, FM Global opened up the SimZone, a 12,000-square-foot experiential learning facility located at the company’s Center for Property Risk Solutions in Norwood, MA. With eight separate hands-on training laboratories and dozens of other training stations, the SimZone’s environment allows engineers from around the world to participate in simulations of their future work in the field. Simulated potential hazards include building-construction assemblies; industrial boilers, ovens, and furnaces; electrical distribution equipment; and ignitable-liquid handling and storage. Other stations enable engineers to learn how to test various safety systems such as fire pumps, sprinkler systems, and switchgears.

Participants in this case-study session will learn how the SimZone is working for FM Global, and gain ideas for implementing SimZone elements for your own organization.

In this session, you will learn:

  • The project's challenges and obstacles, and how FM Global successfully moved around them
  • What has and hasn’t worked with this hands-on learning approach
  • What FM Global has learned about this training method
  • The feedback from learners
  • The effectiveness and efficiency of hands-on learning