• Richard Chambury

Totara + Compliance + CQC = Pass.

Updated: Dec 13, 2019

With contributions from the Business Support Manager for Workforce Education at East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust.

In 2015, Chambury Learning Solutions commenced work with the Mandatory Training Team at East Lancashire Hospitals to set up the NHS Core Skills Training (CST) to make it easier for their staff to complete mandatory and statutory training.

Working with the Trust's Subject Matter Experts, it was agreed the staff had to complete each module of the Core Skills Framework, which for a large NHS Trust with approximately 8,500 staff took some time.

Once we had the information on who needed what training, we built Audiences within the Totara LMS, and assigned the Audiences to the newly created Certifications and Programmes.

At the same time, the Trust decided to go live with as much e-Learning as possible which would allow staff to do most of their ‘mandatory’ training online. This meant that staff could update their training when it was more convenient to them, rather than doing it all at the same time, or cramming it in-between shifts, or attending lengthly classroom sessions. This has resulted in staff spending less time doing core training, when its convenient, and overall compliance raising.


Having developed the e-Learning content in-house, and Chambury Learning Solutions completing the set-up of the Audiences, Programmes and Certifications, it was agreed that the Trust would launch the CST programme on the 1st April 2016.

Since April 2016 the Trust has been able to run real time compliance reports from Totara LMS each month informing their Board of compliance /non-compliance percentages for all ‘mandatory’ training (now known as CST); prior to this the Trust could not run compliance reports easily and in real-time.

Reports are now available to all staff, mainly by the managers, who can run their own 'real time' reports in seconds to see which of their staff are compliant and non-compliant. Managers can see detailed reports row-by-row for individual staff, have access to aggregated percentage reports, and colour coded graphical RAG reports.

One of the best things about Totara LMS is that it now sends out reminders to staff at 90, 60, and 30 days prior to a Certification becoming due, and again if they fail to complete and become overdue. Staff didn’t have these prompts before and it was easy for them to forget to complete their training. Managers are also copied in so they are fully aware.

The Trust was recently audited by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) who saw just how useful the Totara LMS was in being able to demonstrate compliance; they asked for several reports from the system and the Workforce Education team were able to provide them within minutes, some in seconds ..! For the first time the Trust were able to show the CQC exactly what they wanted to see with regard to training data, and the CQC felt that this was proof of the Trust's progression in core training.

Proof that the Totara LMS was able to provide what the CQC requires.

Totara also helps the Trust to manage new starters.

Totara assists immensely with the weekly Corporate Induction due to the fact that Induction now requires that when new employees go onto the Wards and Departments they are fully compliant with all their Statutory & Mandatory training and much more of their 'Essential to Role' Training than ever before; improving patent safety.

The internal team who administrate Totara LMS ensure that all new staff have access Totara to enable them to be able to complete the training, and the Induction Team provide the instruction and support for them to complete what is required on Totara.

The Totara LMS really has made a difference to how staff at East Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust complete a large proportion of their training. The feedback from them is that it is much easier for them to complete and no longer needs to be a full day training, which wasn’t interesting or enjoying.

East Lancashire Hospitals have had over 92% of staff log into Totara to complete their learning, update their CPD and complete their appraisals in the last year.

“Totara has assisted the Trust immensely in launching a revised mandatory training programme in the form of Core Skills Training.

As well as the system hosting both Core Skills e-Learning modules and Essential to Role learning resources, staff are now able to access their ‘Required Learning’ which provides them with a personalised list of the Core Skills Training modules which they need to complete, at the correct level and due date.

Additionally, with our new Core Skills Training compliance reports and built-in Core Skills Training reminders for staff and their line managers, compliance has significantly improved over the last 12 months.

In summary, Core Skills Training on the Totara system supports the Trust’s vision to provide safe, personal and effective care to all patients, families and staff”.

Mandatory Training Lead, East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust.

Are you worrying about the next external audit? Does the LMS you currently use not provide real time, quick, relevant reports? If so get in touch, we can help you get up and running, quick and easy.

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