The Employee Training Function Must Add Value to HR

The Employee Training Function involves carrying out activities to raise the level of employees' competence in order to improve their productivity.

Training is the first of the two parts of human resource development. This provides employees with the necessary skills and knowledge to perform their jobs well enough to attain their jobs' objectives. These are activities carried out under the training function.

Training must satisfy the required standards based on the type of industry your organization is engaged in.

Employee development, on the other hand, prepares your people to take on more responsibilities in the near future.

Employee development involves the acquisition of knowledge and skills, and change in attitude.

It is vital that you prepare a proper employee development plan. This plan must channel every aspects of human resource management to improving employees' performance in order that your organization can achieve its overall objectives.

Part of this plan must involve formulating and implementing an employee and executive development program. Your organization needs capable corporate leaders to progress further.

Emphasize skills or competencies acquisition or human resource development involving functional, behavioral and core competencies.

Employee Training Function must Increase Motivation

Scope of Training
Ensure that your employees can perform their assigned tasks from the time they report for duty until they exit from your organization.

The employee training function aims at providing them with the necessary skills and continuously updating these in the course of their working life.

  • Give new employees ample opportunities to learn the skills required to perform their job to the standard expected. Begin with technical skills necessary to carry out the job for which he or she has been recruited.
  • Further programs are needed to give them with additional skills and knowledge. This is to prepare them for more responsibilities or higher positions.
  • Address employees' competency gaps discovered when you conduct a skills inventory. Prepare a time schedule.
  • Continuously enhance employees' skills and know-how to prepare them for changing business conditions and technological advancement.
  • Conduct development programs to cater for future HR and organizational needs.
  • Prepare your people for eventualities such as organizational restructuring, amalgamation, takeover or economic slowdown.

Include in the additional program the development of core competencies.

These include leadership and strategic thinking other than the core technical skills required for job performance.

Three-step Approach

This involves:

  • TNA, involving "the what", "the who", "the when", and "the where".
  • The activity is conducted. What methods and learning principles will you select? Who will conduct it? Which venue is conducive to effective learning?
  • Evaluation of the activity. Have you achieved the objectives? If not, why? What corrective actions can and will your organization take?

Effectively-Run Employee Training Function Achieves Defined Objectives

  • Decide on the content and process.
    • Determine the location, types, and presenters.
  • Holding the programs outside the premises is more effective than if they were held in-house. Interruptions are reduced or eliminated.
  • You can choose between several methods of delivery.
    • Classroom style. Determine the room arrangement that can lead to the best possible results.
    • Simulation including machine simulators and actually performing the task such as in the acquisition of management skills.
    • On-the-job experience which is the basis of employee development.
    • These include coaching, mentoring, job rotation, job enrichment, and secondment.
  • Evaluate whether the objectives were achieved and to what extent.
  • Find out why the objectives were not achieved or only some parts were achieved.

You will know that your program is successful "if it chooses a distinctive strategic position that differs from those of its competitors."

This requires adequate knowledge on how other organizations conduct their employee skills enhancement and development programs. Benchmark.

Develop Competencies of Managers and Supervisors by Training

Experience tells us that people must learn how to effectively perform supervisory or managerial jobs. These abilities are acquired. An effective employee training function managed by the right people helps you achieve this. Start with the core competencies first.

Develop your managers, supervisors and employees by equipping them with all the necessary functional and behavioral competencies.

Prepare them to handle higher level jobs or more responsible ones. Take this into consideration in your succession planning.

Wherever you promote any of your people to executive or supervisory position ensure that you provide them with the basic skill in:

  • Planning and organization;
  • Effective leadership;
  • Controlling;
  • Performance of the functions of the higher position.

Line managers including senior managers must also possess skills in:

  • Strategy formulation
  • Management of change
  • Diversity management especially with the onset of globalization and presence of international workers
  • Basic human resource management activities including recruitment, employee development, and performance appraisal

Develop and Improve Employees' Abilities

Employ strategies in skills development and knowledge acquisition to ensure the accomplishment of your organizational strategic plan.

The following information may help improve the efficacy of your employee training function, thus improving organizational competitiveness.

In his article "Strategic training delivers results", Steve Buttry says that this "improves results on all platforms."

He was writing about journalists but what he states are relevant to other organizational activities.

Quoting McClellan, he says that it "makes the biggest difference, when you tie the training to strategic goals and then measure the outcomes."

Daniel Wentland, in "Strategic Training: Putting Employees First" argues:

    "Your organization's survival depends on employee training“ to brush off the importance of upgrading the skills of your employees is a dangerous strategic mistake."

His 'STEM' method takes into consideration "scarcity and constraints" that organizations are faced with.

He provides insights into better understanding organizations' needs, where they can go for resources, how to get management's commitment and how to create an environment where employees are motivated to develop their skills and to excel.

Click HERE for Daniel Wentland's "STEM" that puts employees first.

Important Role of the Human Resource Department

In all of these activities, the HR department plays a crucial role in making a success of the employee training function.

It is essential that HR people themselves are well-equipped and developed in important aspects of strategic human resource management so that they can effectively provide the necessary assistance to line managers and to every employee.

Prepare your training and development plan well. Employ strategies that add value to your people. Engage the right people to look after the employee training function.

Skilled and knowledge workers help you to achieve your organization's mission and objectives. This is one of the strong indications that you treat your people as your most important asset.

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