May 5, 2003

MetalLearn Proves its Mettle – Senior Executives Praise Effectiveness of Computerized, Interactive Training Tool

May 05, 2003

MetalLearn Proves its Mettle – Senior Executives Praise Effectiveness of Computerized, Interactive Training Tool

SAN DIEGO, California, May 5, 2003 – MetalLearn℠, the authoritative, computerized metals training system offered by the Metals Service Center Institute (MSCI), has compiled a strong record of success in its first year of release.

A review of 200 student records shows that on average, test scores rose 34 points (on a 100-point scale) after MetalLearn instruction, to an average post-instruction score of 85 from an average score of 51 in testing administered before instruction.

“We have been most impressed with the learning that is taking place,” says

Bill Jones, president and chief executive officer of O’Neal Steel, Inc.  “We have seen definite increases, on average 36 point, from the pre-test scores to the post-test scores.  Even some of our seasoned employees have admitted to having increased product knowledge after the training.”

Says Maurice S. “Sandy” Nelson, Jr., president and chief executive officer of the Earle M. Jorgensen Company:  “We are migrating MetalLearn across EMJ and it is proving to be a very effective teaching tool for our people.”

The interactive MetalLearn training system, available only to MSCI members, is built around on-line and CD components.  It provides a complete review of the 10 most popular lines of metal sold by metals service centers, including carbon and alloy plate, bar, sheet and tubing; structural shapes, stainless steel, aluminum, high-corrosion and temperature-resistant metals, copper and brass, and tool steels.  The instructional goal is to provide recognition of the products, their specifications, uses and the terminology associated with each.

Students may work at their own pace with MetalLearn from any suitably equipped computer.  Their progress is continually updated through the Learning Management System so that training directors and supervisors may monitor their development.

Service Center operators, including larger companies that have developed their own training regimens, say MetalLearn is a valuable addition to their training tools.

“MetalLearn since its release has become an invaluable training curriculum for our employees,” says Robert M. Kaniecki, executive vice president, administration, of Marmon/Keystone Corporation.  “Our employees are able to learn effectively at a pace that meets their schedule.”

“As a full-line distributor, we have found great value in the product,” says G. Thomas McKane, president and chief executive officer of A.M. Castle & Co.  “It is a very comprehensive product training tool, particularly for sales representatives who are new to the business or support personnel who need a better understanding of our product lines.”

Jones said O’Neal employees appreciate the availability of training on site and the ability to learn at their own pace.  “They are also impressed with the program being highly interactive,” he said.

To evaluate MetalLearn learning, pre-test and post-instruction scores were examined in the four most popular product modules.  On average, students recorded scores of 45 to 57 in pre-tests for the four most popular product modules.  Those same students achieved average scores in a range of 78 to 92 after completing the MetalLearn coursework.

“We are gratified to see that MetalLearn has performed up to the very high standards that we originally set for the product,” says M. Robert Weidner, III, MSCI’s president and chief executive officer.  “Especially at a time of tight training budgets, it gives our members a cost-effective way to bring employees up to speed on their product lines with the assurance that the lessons learned will apply directly to increased customer satisfaction and productivity on the job.”

 Founded in 1907, the Metals Service Center Institute has more than 400 members operating from about 1,200 locations in the U.S., Canada, Mexico and elsewhere around the world. Together, MSCI members constitute the largest single group of metals purchasers in North America, amounting each year to more than 50 million tons of steel, aluminum and other metals, with about 300,000 manufacturers and fabricators as customers. Metals service centers distribute metals and provide first-stage fabrication services.


Contact: Jon Kalkwarf, 773-867-8760 x105, 773-835-6108 cell