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The proper way to implement a training program

Jan. 27, 2020
There is no disputing the value of training within an organization. It helps with employee engagement and retention, improves efficiency and productivity and can improve both customer satisfaction and profitability.

There is no disputing the value of training within an organization. It helps with employee engagement and retention, improves efficiency and productivity and can improve both customer satisfaction and profitability.

But in order to be effective, you must move away from a one-size-fits-all approach to training, according to Candace Fisher, director of organizational development, HR Source. Speaking at a recent NationaLease meeting, Fisher said the first step in effective training is determining your training needs. You can use job descriptions, performance evaluations, and employee feedback to help you get a handle on what your most pressing training needs are.

The next step is to determine what you want the training to accomplish. Are you trying to improve knowledge, skill or abilities of individuals within the organization? Is the purpose of the training to achieve business goals, develop leadership skills, retain employees or pass on historic knowledge which helps with long-term succession planning for key positions?

Next you need to develop a plan. This is a good place to again involve your employees. You can ask them about their short-term and long-term goals, ask them how prepared they feel for their next position and what they need to be prepared for that position. You also can ask them to rate themselves on their skills.

How you structure the training will depend in part on your desired outcome, which may include: remembering, understanding, applying, analyzing, evaluating and creating.

Fisher says it is important to document the plan, including identifying the professional development opportunity, what the measurement of completion will be and what the results of the training are.

You also will have to determine if you have the internal resources to conduct the training or if you need to outsource it. If you choose to do the training in-house, will you use a subject matter expert, the employee’s manager/supervisor, a peer or will it be hands-on, on-the job-training?

If you are outsourcing the training, will the trainer come to your location or will you send the employee offsite? Will the training take place at a conference, via a webinar or through an e-learning program?

Once the training is complete, you need to measure its effectiveness by evaluating employee reaction to the training, testing what they learned, observing behavior and documenting results.

Every organization has a need to train, but it takes a well thought out, planned effort to make sure the training achieves the desired results.

About the Author

Jane Clark | Senior VP of Operations

Jane Clark is Senior Vice President, Operations for NationaLease. Prior to joining NationaLease, Jane served as Area Vice President for Randstad, one of the nation’s largest recruitment agencies, and before that, she served in management posts with QPS Companies, Pro Staff, and Manpower, Inc.

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