Partners from France, Germany and Austria came together to reflect on a common need for targeted literacy training able to respond to the needs of low-skilled workers already active in the labour market. The resultant Literacy@Work Methodological Guide comprises two distinct parts, the first centred on needs, concerns and expectations for workplace literacy, the second addressing the required steps or actions that change and improvement will potentially require. In Part 1 (Identifying and Sharing the Needs) the guide sets the scene on literacy competence needs and expectations, in Europe and in the workplace, highlighting the importance of literacy skills to employers, and confirming benefits to productivity and turnover as well as employer wellbeing. There are also reflections on competences and skills required by those involved in workplace review and employee upskilling as well as insights into possible funding routes for those wishing to embark on a process of workforce literacy development, with examples provided specifically for the three participating countries. In Part 2 (Take Action!) the focus is on distinct workforce development steps with initial reflections on the fundamentals of a successful training intervention, complemented by reflections on training expectations, training needs, programme delivery, skills analysis and evaluation.
Workplace literacy refers to real work-based demands based on the actual documents that employees need to perform their job (for example, health and safety manuals, machine specifications, shift notes, operator instructions, operating procedures, log books). In training terms, the concept of workplace literacy extends to oral communication, written communication, numeracy, critical thinking and digital competence. In considering the need for improved and enhanced workplace literacy, partners in the Literacy@Work project focused specifically on needs and benefits and on mechanisms for successful training delivery. Consequently, the Literacy@Work Methodological Guide has been developed for those with an active role in the development and delivery of workplace literacy training, confirming background concepts as well as key stages in workforce training delivery, including those tied to initial needs confirmation and analysis. The guide itself is clearly portable beyond the initially-participating countries, with wider methodological reflections easily able to be considered by all those involved in the planning, preparation and delivery of workplace literacy training. Part 1 also serves to provide a quick insight into core concepts for those not yet familiar with workplace literacy training. A core guide exists in both English and French. In German, a set of four guides is provided, covering key project delivery steps yet the expected methodological and training delivery content is also easily accessible.