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Meet the Team: Get to Know Account Manager Ken Ainsworth

TargetSolutions' Account Manager Ken AinsworthAlthough he’s lived elsewhere, Kennith Ainsworth started his family in San Diego: the city he was born and raised in. Ken joined TargetSolutions in January 2017 as an account manager and is already a thriving member of the company’s philanthropy culture team.

Ken’s adaptability and friendly attitude have helped him as he has worked for a variety of companies ranging from startups to corporations. You’re in good hands with Ken because of his experience. In fact, he previously worked as a National Account Manager at AT&T.

“What I absolutely love about working at TargetSolutions is that I can stand behind our product knowing that our team provides a safer and more educated workforce,” Ken said. “Helping heroes is something to be proud of.”

Ken also loves art and traveling. He hopes to continue exploring new places and indulging in his many hobbies such as film-making.

Find out more about Ken with this Q-and-A:

Favorite Movie?

Top Gun. It made me want to be a pilot.

Favorite Band?

That’s hard to narrow down because I really love music. I’ve been listening to 90s bands lately like Nirvana and Red Hot Chili Peppers.

If you could go anywhere, where would you visit?

Bali! I almost went there for my honeymoon but we ended up going to Hawaii instead.

Favorite flavor of ice cream?

Cookies & Cream.

Favorite Sports Team?

Chargers…I’ve been a diehard fan and season pass holder for years. Not a fan of recent events, but I still love them.

Best book you’ve read?

I love Stephen King but I recently read Feel the Fear and Do It Anyways by Susan Jeffers and loved it.

Any hobbies?

Sportfishing! Every summer I’m out at sea on my friend’s fishing boat.

What is your favorite type of weather?

Sunny San Diego weather.

Favorite animal?

Tigers

Any pets?

Yes, my Austrailian Shepard, Kobe, and a betta fish.

Fun fact about yourself:

I was part of a social media startup in the early 2000s. It was around the time of early MySpace and was called “FriendMits.”

Packed House on Hand for TargetSolutions’ Annual Networking & Training Workshop at Firehouse World

cb-2017-tsc-fh-user-group-markTargetSolutions Presents Prestigious Awards to LAFD’s Capt. Benjamin Banks, Southern Marin’s Bn. Chief Matt Barnes and St. Charles Fire Department’s Capt. Jamie Young

SAN DIEGO – TargetSolutions, the leader in online training management applications for fire departments, hosted its annual Networking & Training Workshop on Tuesday during Firehouse World in San Diego.

More than 70 attendees from fire departments across the country packed the Marriott Gaslamp Quarter’s Altitude Sky Lounge to meet with TargetSolutions account managers and mingle with other training officers. The highlight of the afternoon was the awards presentation, which honors platform managers who share the same commitment as TargetSolutions to deliver exceptional fire department training.

The Technology Achievement Award

capt-ben-banks

Los Angeles Fire Department’s Capt. Benjamin Banks was the recipient of this year’s Technology Achievement Award, which goes to a platform administrator focused on innovation in fire department training.

Capt. Benjamin Banks of the Los Angeles Fire Department was presented with the Technology Achievement Award for consistently looking to maximize TargetSolutions’ web-based system. Banks’ forward-thinking mindset has helped his metro agency’s training program flourish.

“Our department, in general, is trying to use technology more and more, all the time for everything,” said Banks, who has been managing the department’s training platform for the last year. “That’s really been a directive of our mayor and our fire chief, so this falls right in line with that.”

The ability to measure training hours – as well as other key performance indicators related to training – is critical to LAFD, which has increased its utilization of the TargetSolutions platform since Banks took on his current role.

“Being able to provide metrics, that’s what it’s all about,” Banks said. “I hear that across the fire service. Metrics, it’s the numbers, it’s the totals, really being able to show the work that we’re doing, the training that people in the fire stations and otherwise are doing, it’s all about being able to put those numbers on. Unless you have technology that can support that, it’s going to be very difficult. And then having technology that can make that job even easier, I mean that’s what the goal is. TargetSolutions has definitely helped us in that regard.”

The Vanguard Award

Bn. Chief Matt Barnes of Southern Marin Fire Department (Calif.). was given the Vanguard Award, which goes each year to someone who exemplifies dedication in the delivery of fire department training. Barnes has consistently worked to maximize TargetSolutions and help his agency streamline training and compliance.

“The fire service changes and evolves on a daily basis and the only way to stay current is to research and go out and perform skills based off the information that you’ve gathered and learned from the past,” said Barnes, who has been with the agency for the last 15 years. “We’ve had some significant near misses in our organization. We’ve had two line-of-duty deaths in our organizations due to health, so training is very near and dear to me. I think it’s the fabric of what makes someone become a good, proficient performing individual in the fire service.”

The Helping Hand Award

The final award went to Capt. Jamie Young of the St. Charles Fire Department in Missouri. The Helping Hand is delivered each year to someone who goes above and beyond to assist TargetSolutions or their neighboring agencies who are using the platform. Young’s department hosted a team of TargetSolutions videographers in 2016 for a special training shoot and the footage is being used in TargetSolutions’ upcoming NFPA 1410 training series, which is scheduled for release in March.

Young was not in attendance, but he recorded a video message that was played during the event.

“On behalf of myself and the St. Charles Fire Department I want to say thank you to TargetSolutions for such a wonderful recognition,” Young said. “It’s been a pleasure working with this company to bring such cutting-edge technology to the forefront of the fire service. It’s this cutting-edge technology that is keeping us safer and smarter on the fire ground. TargetSolutions has helped us and countless others across the country and I’m personally looking forward to many future projects.”

About TargetSolutions

TargetSolutions delivers cutting-edge software applications, engaging online training courses, and world-class customer service. The company was founded in 1999 and today there are more than 4,000 organizations across the country using TargetSolutions to manage training. TargetSolutions is headquartered in San Diego, Calif. For more information, find us online at www.targetsolutions.com or call us at 1 (800) 840-8048.

Enhancements to TargetSolutions’ Infrastructure Will Require Action for Some Customers

tslogo_symbol-color-smallTargetSolutions is taking steps to modernize its platform and strengthen its overall infrastructure. As part of these enhancements, it is necessary to change Internet Protocol (IP) addresses. If your organization has whitelisted sites associated with TargetSolutions by IP, you will need to alert your IT department about these important changes.

You will need to act to ensure that TargetSolutions’ fully qualified domain names (FQDN) are the only identifiers used for whitelisting so members of your organization can continue to access TargetSolutions from the workplace. Please click here for TargetSolutions’ new whitelisting information.

Why Is TargetSolutions Making Updates?

The overhaul to TargetSolutions’ back-end infrastructure is part of a multi-faceted strategy to ensure the most scalable and secure platform possible. TargetSolutions is taking steps to safeguard its online training management system with the latest technology so it can accommodate future demands.

The result of these upgrades will allow us to handle increasing volumes while still maintaining acceptable response time. These enhancements will also improve the platform’s overall reliability and enhance its disaster recovery capabilities.

How Will My Organization Be Impacted?

These updates will have little to no impact on the large majority of customers. If your organization has restricted Internet access for employees and has whitelisted TargetSolutions by its IP addresses, you will need to contact your IT department so it can make the required updates. Please click here for TargetSolutions’ new whitelisting information.

When Will the Updates Take Place?

TargetSolutions will be implementing these enhancements soon. We will have more information in the coming weeks on the exact time of the release. TargetSolutions recommends you act now if you are whitelisting TargetSolutions by IP. Please click here for the full list of FQDNs to ensure employees have access to TargetSolutions from the workplace.

What if I Have Questions?

Please click here to access information your IT department will need if you have whitelisted TargetSolutions by IP. If you have any questions, please contact TargetSolutions customer support at (800) 840-8048.

TargetSolutions Updates Three Driver Safety Training Courses for School Districts

TargetSolutions has made style and content updates to three driver safety courses in its online training catalog for school districts.

It’s a staggering number, but a report by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) shows roughly 42 percent of workplace fatalities happened on the roadways in 2015. It’s no secret driving accidents are the leading cause of deaths, but more could be done to curb the trend.

TargetSolutions’ online training catalog for school districts features a collection of courses built to provide school bus drivers with a plethora of safety tips. Three courses have recently received updates to deliver the most current, dynamic training experiences possible on this important topic.

Here are the courses that have undergone enhancements, including format restyling, new material and upgraded interactions:

Driver Safety Orientation: A general overview of the dangers associated with driving on the job. This course dives into the importance of establishing a driver safety program.

Large Vehicle Characteristics: An exploration of various large vehicles used in the school setting. The course explores critical safety requirements.

Passenger Van Safety: An engaging overview outlining the safety risks and characteristics of 15 different passenger vans driven by school district personnel.

If you have any questions about TargetSolutions’ online training catalog for school districts, please contact us today at (800) 840-8048.

TargetSolutions’ JAC Reporting Solution Undergoes Enhancements for More Accurate Reporting

TargetSolutions has made enhancements to improve the accuracy of JAC training reports and prevent the possibility of “double-dipping.”

California fire departments that utilize TargetSolutions to track training hours for the California Firefighter Joint Apprenticeship Committee (CFFJAC) reimbursement program, will benefit from recent enhancements to the computer-based training system.

Upgrades have been implemented to more accurately report JAC training hours while eliminating the ability to accidentally double dip.

A new “reimbursement” category has been added to the solution. This new feature will enable platform managers to more accurately pull records that will be submitted to JAC or the community college.

Platform managers will now track all JAC personnel in this new category called “Reimbursement Status.” The upgrades accomplish the following:

  • This special category will prevent users to simultaneously exist in both JAC and Community College reimbursement status groups, which prevents double-dipping
  • Platform managers will now be able to see their users’ reimbursement status history in the reimbursement category
  • Additional enhancements to the Manage Organization functionality allows platform managers to efficiently move users in or out of the JAC program en masse and enter IDs from one page, rather than one by one in Manage Users

Please click here for more information on this new functionality.

“TargetSolutions’ JAC reporting solution offers the ability to automatically track JAC codes for completed training and easily report monthly training records to JAC,” said Product Manager Misty Pratt. “With TargetSolutions, agencies can now accurately report JAC training hours and prevent the possibility of double-dipping. These enhancements make the tool even more efficient and effective.”

If you have any questions about these enhancements, please contact us today at (800) 840-8048.

Implement a Health and Wellness Plan at Your Organization

Health and Wellness PlanWith the increased popularity of Health and Wellness programs, it’s important to remember your employees are the focus. Organizations implementing wellness plans are taking preventative measures that empower the workforce and develop healthy habits.

TargetSolutions’ customizable Health and Wellness credential provides a unique experience that matches your company’s needs. This pre-built program, available upon request from TargetSolutions’ account managers, covers various subjects from TargetSolutions’ Professional Development catalog, including nutrition and fitness, tobacco, drug, and alcohol use, sleep deprivation, and stress management.

In addition to improving employees’ physical and mental health, you can deliver courses regarding more personal matters. These courses discuss divorce and other major life changes that can be explored at the employee’s discretion.

“Whether you use TargetSolutions’s customizable credential to supplement your existing Health and Wellness program, or as a baseline for starting one, you will be helping your employees improve their quality of life.”

Jennifer Jones, Client Services Manager

Last year, TargetSolutions’ Wellness Team initiated the “Steptember” and “Walktober” competitions to challenge employees and get them moving during September and October. However, you don’t need a designated wellness team to get started. All you need is to pick and choose courses or activities that align with your company’s culture; whether they be once a month or once a year.

TargetSolutions’ Health and Wellness program provides the tools you need to create a healthier workforce. With a more health conscious team, your company experiences increased productivity, unity, and satisfaction. The organization itself also benefits from fewer compensation claims and fewer days missed.

A Health and Wellness program communicates an organization cares about its employees. Offering custom courses to better your team brings people together and enriches their lives.

Are you interested in building a customized Health and Wellness program for your organization? If so, please contact TargetSolutions at (800) 840-8048 to learn more.

TargetSolutions’ Top 10 Training Courses from 2016

TargetSolutions’ comprehensive catalog of training features popular titles covering a broad range of topics, including bloodborne pathogens safety, sexual harassment, and hazard communication.

Organizations across the country trust TargetSolutions to deliver online training courses that are not only engaging, but current with occupational standards and accreditation. This commitment to excellence explains why the total number of course completions goes higher and higher each year. That was certainly the case in 2016, which saw a 16 percent increase in completions from 2015.

Here are the top 10 most popular courses based on the total number of completions from 2016:

Bloodborne Pathogens Safety: The most popular course in TargetSolutions’ catalog, Bloodborne Pathogens Safety, complies with the Needlestick Safety and Prevention Act to minimize the risk of various diseases through bloodborne pathogens.

First Responder Operations Level Refresher (Modules 1-4): The First Responder Operations Level Refresher Series relates to safety regulations and procedures for hazardous material releases. This extremely popular course covers the use of hazardous materials during a terrorist attack, among other topics.

Sexual Harassment Awareness: Sexual harassment is an issue across all workforces and this important course covers methods to deal with and prevent incidents for a safe and productive workplace. An important factor in this course’s popularity is the fact it meets California’s AB 1825 requirement.

Child Abuse: Mandated Reporter Training: This California-state mandated training presents the laws and steps to report abuse and protect children.

EMS HIPAA Awareness: EMS HIPPA Awareness addresses federal regulations and the responsibilities of EMS personnel and agencies to protect patient health information.

Back Injury Prevention: Since back injuries are common in the workplace, the Back Injury Prevention course discusses how to protect your organization and exercises that strengthen the back.

Hearing Conservation: The Hearing Conservation course goes over the anatomy, function, and sensitivity of the ear to prevent hearing loss when working under certain conditions.

NFPA 1500 Hazard Communication: The hazard communication course covers the Hazard Communication Standard (HCS) when dealing with chemical hazards to prevent adverse health effects.

Lock-Out/Tag-Out: The Lock-Out/Tag-Out course helps ensure employees are trained to maintain energy control programs and are safeguarded from hazardous energy while handling equipment.

Slips, Trips, and Falls Prevention: As falls are a common workplace safety hazard, TargetSolutions’ Slips, Trips, and Falls Prevention helps identify potential risks.

Many courses include information relevant across all industries, while other courses are unique to the standards of an organization. With engaging online training courses that are available 24/7, TargetSolutions is dedicated to helping public entities achieve compliance and reduce risk.

If you have any questions about TargetSolutions’ online training library, please contact us today at (800) 840-8048.

 

Recently Enhanced NFPA 1001 Training Course Covers Essentials of Self-Contained Breathing Apparatus

TargetSolutions’ NFPA 1001 Self-Contained Breathing Apparatus training course has been updated with new content and enhanced multimedia.

The average firefighter is no stranger to danger. In fact, they’re well acquainted. When risking everything to enter a fire zone or similar environment, it’s of the utmost importance that firefighters are also acquainted with the life-saving self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA).

TargetSolutions’ NFPA 1001-level online training course, Self-Contained Breathing Apparatus, packs the essentials of SCBA into 10 learning modules and tests your knowledge with a 10-question exam. Students will explore the legal requirements for SCBA as well as conditions requiring its utilization.

This 60-minute lesson has recently been updated with new content and enhanced multimedia. After completing this course, students will understand the following:

  • Importance of SCBA fit testing
  • Various types of SCBAs
  • Limitations firefighters face when using SCBAs
  • Potential SCBA malfunctions or emergencies
  • Maintenance and inspection procedures for SCBA

For more information on this course or other courses inside TargetSolutions’ online firefighter training catalog, please contact TargetSolutions today at (800) 840-8048.

Meet the Team: Get to Know Client Services Representative Krista Woodin

cb-krista-woodin-imageBorn in Upland, Calif., raised in Carlsbad, and now living in San Diego with her dog Flynn, Krista Woodin is a true California girl.

Krista became a Client Services Representative in October of 2016 after learning about the opportunity through her close friend Julie Blosch, who works as an account manager at TargetSolutions.

Krista has worked in various industries and is no stranger to customer service. She previously was an account representative for Cali Bamboo. Now that she is at TargetSolutions, she is fitting in perfectly.

“I love the people I work with at TargetSolutions,” Krista said. “Everyone is so friendly and willing to help. I love working in an industry where our customers create positive change for their communities.”

She traveled outside the country for the first time last October and is looking forward to exploring more places and expanding her horizons!

Learn more about Krista with this Q-and-A:

 What is your favorite hobby?

Hiking and running.

What is your favorite food?

Burritos with salsa – LOTS of salsa. (Although I usually eat chicken and veggies…)

If you could visit anywhere, where would you go?

I have a trip planned for Dubai and Tanzania in May, but I’d also love to visit Greece or Thailand!

What is the best concert you’ve ever been to?

Coldplay. Hands down. I’m going to see them again in October!

What is your favorite movie?

I don’t have any in particular, but I love comedies!

What is your favorite sports team?

Chargers! Bolt up!

Are you a cat or dog person?

Dog person!

What is your favorite type of weather?

Overcast! Although I got over it when I lived in San Francisco.

What is your favorite book?

I don’t read too many books, but I’m currently reading “The Five Love Languages.

What is one fun fact about yourself?

When I was 6 years old I changed my name to Nikki (not legally!). I changed it back after moving to Carlsbad, but my family and old friends still call me by that name!

A Training Event You Don’t Want to Miss: TargetSolutions’ Networking & Training Workshop

targetsolutions networking and training workshopAre you using TargetSolutions to manage your fire department’s training? Are you currently researching which computer-based system best suits your agency’s needs? Do you like appetizers?

If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, you are going to want to reserve your spot for TargetSolutions’ Networking & Training Workshop, which is scheduled Feb.7 during the annual Firehouse World conference in downtown San Diego.

Hosted atop the Marriott Gaslamp Quarter at the Altitude Sky Lounge, this event is an opportunity to meet with TargetSolutions account managers, learn more about the industry’s most powerful online training management system, and network with pre-eminent fire department training officers.

Platform managers and prospective users alike are welcome to attend the workshop, which will explore optimum strategies for maximizing the platform’s functionality for scheduling, delivering, tracking, and reporting training and compliance.

Attendees will also be able to discuss firefighter training best practices, as well as tips and tricks for utilizing TargetSolutions.

“This is a tremendous opportunity for platform managers to learn new techniques on how to tailor the TargetSolutions platform to meet their agency’s specific needs,” said Kegan Konrady, who will emcee the event and serves as TargetSolutions’ regional sales manager.

Networking & Training Workshop 2017

When: Feb. 7 from 2-5 p.m.
Where: Marriott Gaslamp Quarter’s Altitude Sky Lounge

at 660 K St. in San Diego

Register Now!

“We appreciate our customers and without them, we wouldn’t be here. This is a chance for us to not just show our appreciation, but provide training officers and chiefs the opportunity to learn from each other. It never ceases to amaze me how the platform is being used in so many ways. It’s truly a great thing to see.”

TargetSolutions will also announce this year’s winners of the same three prestigious awards that were given out at last year’s event.

The Vanguard Award will be delivered to an individual dedicated to providing outstanding firefighter training, the Technology Achievement Award will go to an individual constantly looking to maximize TargetSolutions’ technology, and the Helping Hand Award is for an individual who has gone above and beyond to help TargetSolutions or other agencies utilize the platform.

In addition, complimentary drinks and hors d’oeuvres will be served during this lively gathering at one of San Diego’s most picturesque locations.

To reserve your spot for the Networking & Training Workshop, please click here. If you have any questions, contact us today at (800) 840-8048.