UNDERSTANDING THE IMPORTANCE SUCCESSFUL TRAINING
ROBYN CRIGGER, CEO
If people really are your greatest asset, isn’t it time to look at your training programs as investments in your organization’s human capital and not just as an expense?
The evaluation of training is inherently a good thing. But, because short term priorities always crowd out their longer term competitors, it’s typically something we plan to do better next year – after all, we’ve got away with it so far, so another year won’t hurt!
And even if training evaluation is undertaken, it is usually at the easiest and lowest level. Reactions are important and providing “smiley faces” serve a purpose, but will they be enough to back up your arguments when there is a need for a greater investment in training, when major changes need to be made, when there is stiffer competition, and when times get tough?
Training is one of many actions that an organization can take to improve its performance and profitability. Only if training is properly evaluated can it compare against these other methods and expect to be selected either in preference to or in combination with other methods.
We all know that when money is tight, training budgets are amongst the first to be sacrificed. Only by thorough, quantitative analysis can training departments make the case necessary to resist these cuts.
Training programs should be continuously improved to provide better value and increase benefits for an organization. Without formal evaluation, the basis for change is only subjective.
These days there are many alternative approaches available to training departments, including a variety of classroom, on-job and self-study methods. Using comparative evaluation techniques, organizations can make rational decisions about the methods to employ.
One way of measuring the success of training is for student numbers to reflect the fact that the training is addressing a need, and that the design and methodology is meeting expectations.
There are “Direct Costs” and “Indirect Costs” relayed to Training. Direct Costs include external design and development, consultants’ fees, travel expenses, training materials, refreshments, etc. “Indirect Costs” could include training equipment/materials, facility, etc. True costs of training would include “direct and indirect costs”.
The more efficient a training program is, the less it should cost. An efficient training program should teach a lot with little effort. Another positive result is to accomplish a lot within a limited time frame. All should have goals to accomplish and learn as much as possible to be the best.
The more individuals gain solid training and knowledge through a program, the more of a benefit this program has been to an organization. Good training can help a business be more productive and efficient.
An insightful and engaging program, where employees from different regions or departments can gain a renewed enthusiasm by mixing with others and sharing ideas, etc. produces an extra benefit or even perk for those employees who attend. Such experiences can boost learning, reactions, behavior, and performance.
When you combine all the positive by-products of strategic and effective training, the “Return-On-Investments” clearly is an overwhelming positive outcome. Those key factors that deliver such excellent results include: a) using quality and effective trainers, b) select those areas of training that will be most beneficial to the employees, and c) designing a training program that includes a positive work environment and ample time to address those important issues.
Training truly is one of the most important efforts that employers can provide for the employees. Just as a car owner understands the value of providing good maintenance to a car, employers must “take care of their employees”. This is a PRIORITY!!!
Invest in Your Best Assets: Your Employees