The use of the Internet as a training medium can provide better opportunities for professional development to working engineers labouring under busy schedules.

As is the case with the members of many other scientific and technical vocations, engineers must constantly upgrade and expand their professional capabilities in order to keep pace with the changes in a rapidly evolving field.

This professional duty is often rendered highly difficult, however, by the hectic working lives of engineers. This is especially the case for engineers in the mining or resources sector, who often work in remote locations under a fly-in-fly-out arrangement, or under a roster system which can disrupt their regular hours.

The Internet promises to make professional development far easier for working engineers, however, by providing them with access to convenient, cost-effective training sessions irrespective of their physical location.

Instead of requiring that engineers be present at specialized training sites, programs such as Live Online can deliver training via the Internet to company premises or even private homes.

This can achieve major savings for companies, who are not required to send their staff to professional development workshops which are often held in faraway locations.

Online training can also provide class times with far greater flexibility, making it that much easier for busy professionals to fit training sessions into their packed work schedules.

“If staff are not working flat chat five days a week, maybe they have a day or day and a half when they are not that busy to get some cost-effective professional development,” says Engineering Education Australia general manager Ann Ellis.

In addition to providing working engineers with more convenient access to professional development, online training can also help those who are in between jobs or in search of further work opportunities.

Ellis points out that online training sessions have the additional benefit of providing participants with enhanced networking opportunities by connecting them with a broad range of people scattered in different locations.

“Not only are you improving your skills, but by participating you can also broaden your networks – which can be a benefit in itself for job seekers,” she says.