'How Do I?' Make the Workplace More Accessible?

'How Do I?' is an innovative digital learning support tool, developed by educational professionals to help people learn skills at work more independently. Their suite of apps, linked through contactless tags, have been designed to support people to learn at their own pace and in the flow of work.

How did 'How Do I?' come into existence?

Taryl Law and Tom Casson, co-founders of ‘How Do I?', met whilst they were both working at a school for young people with learning disabilities. Tom had been working on developing life skills learning provision at the time and came up with the ingenious idea of using mobile video to teach in the classroom.

The first version of their product was designed to support people with learning difficulties to undertake life skills more independently at home and in school. ‘How Do I?’ was observed in action as part of Outstanding OFSTED and CQC inspections within leading educational and care organisations.

The team’s vision is of a more inclusive society, where everyone can tap into their true potential. With this in mind, for the past couple of years, Taryl and Tom have been working on making jobs & workplaces more accessible to people who have additional needs. Thanks to support from the Ufi Charitable Trust and Innovate UK, the team were able to create two apps called the Creator Studio and Player, which enable users to view step by step learning videos from the touch of a device to a contactless sticker.

Watch the video to see how 'How Do I?' developed their product for the workplace.

An idea like this comes along once every ten years. And I’m in my fourth decade of teaching.”


'How Do I?' in action:

How the apps work:

  1. Trainers and managers use the How Do I? Creator Studio app to record video content on how to use a piece of equipment or complete a task.
  2. They can then link the video to a contactless tag which uses the same technology as contactless debit payments.
  3. The tag will be placed on or close to the point of learning.
  4. Employees then use the Player App to scan the tag with their mobile phones.
  5. Voila! The video tutorial will appear on their phone screen helping them to complete the task. Meaning employees can learn independently and in the flow of work!

Bridging the employment gap

There is a large gap in rates of employment for people with learning difficulties. It is not unheard of for people who have additional needs to feel like they have been 'cast aside' due to their disability. This is despite data that provides evidence that employees with learning disabilities make great employees.

They are not alone in their experience. You may have recently seen the 4-part TV Series 'The Restaurant That Makes Mistakes' on Channel 4 where people who have additional needs due to dementia are given the chance to work for 4 weeks. By the end of their time working at the restaurant, the people who took part in the experiment advised that they now felt 'accepted and able to contribute to society'.

‘How Do I?’ provides workers with additional needs with the opportunity to flourish in a working environment. It means that people who struggle with learning can confidently complete tasks that they would normally require assistance with. As a result of the achievements made with support from assistive technology, people with additional needs are feeling more valued in society.

Workplaces are reaping the benefits of using the 'How Do I?' app. It means that they can open more opportunities to dedicated workers, who might otherwise struggle to find work due to having additional needs. As you can imagine, this is very rewarding for both the workplace and the people who are being offered opportunities.

Who is 'How Do I?' useful for?

The 'How Do I?' app is without a doubt beneficial to people who have learning difficulties, as it provides them with the independence that they often desire. However, when you design for disability, you design for all. Everyone benefits from an increased ease of use and accessibility, and employers are interested in finding quick, easy and engaging ways to improve learning and development within their broader organisation.

'How Do I?' has partnered with a number of employers such as Iceland FoodsIkea and the Camden Society to support a wide range of people, with and without learning disabilities, to learn at work.

Not only has 'How Do I?' opened opportunities for workplaces to employ more people with additional needs, but they are also able to improve their customers’ productivity. The technology provides high-quality support digitally, which frees up experienced members of staff from delivering hours of extensive training. It also reduces training costs because fewer human resources and materials are required.

Advantages of using 'How Do I?'

  • Consistent learning: 'How Do I?' enables people to create videos once, access them as often as they like.
  • Saves time and money: Organisations can reduce the cost of trainer and trainee time, location hire, materials & catering budget.
  • Video helps people learn: Forrester Research estimates one minute of online video equates to approximately 1.8 million written words. 90% of information transmitted to the brain is visual, and visuals are processed 60,000 times faster in the brain than text.
  • Easy content production: Content can be easily created through How Do I?'s Creator Studio on the app. The video can then be shared and updated across networks by simply tapping on a low-cost tag.

What's next?

Alongside their work in helping employers improve learning and development in their organisations, ‘How Do I?’ are busy working with the Alzheimer’s Society through their Innovation Accelerator. They are developing a new dementia-friendly version of their technology, which will be launching in 2020.

Do you know of someone who could benefit from 'How Do I?''? Or are you a company who would like to use 'How Do I?' at your workplace? The team at 'How Do I?' would be delighted to hear from you! Simply send an email to hello@wearehowdoi.com

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