Conduct Training Evaluation To Justify Resources Allocation

Conduct training evaluation to justify the annual training and development budget. After all, the money is money well spent.

The budget is to facilitate your organization's human resource development and enhancement of employee skills, knowledge and competencies.

When the right training is given according to employee and organizational needs as per the Training Needs Analysis, it will have a positive impact on performance and the competitiveness of your organization.

Training Effectiveness
Your senior management needs to see evidence that the training programs had attained its desired objectives, especially positive effects on organizational performance.

Conduct training evaluation with the intention of improving the efficiency and the effectiveness of various matters related to your training, namely:

  • the contents of training programs and methods
  • cost-effectiveness of the training programs
  • utilization of people
  • employee performance
  • your organization's productivity

Trainers need to conduct training evaluation with respect to their own development. They need to know whether their own training has been effective. Better-trained trainers can help improve the standard of training.

It has been argued that the trainer is only one of five parties who are involved in the evaluation process. The others are senior management, the line manager, the training manager, and the trainee. Each has their individual roles to play.

Relevance to Employee Competency
Training is intended to provide new skills. It is also to enhance present skills to meet increasing competition and changing stakeholders' expectation.

If and when you conduct training evaluation you can verify whether the training was effective in achieving the intended training objectives. Effective training must lead to results such as the ones stated below.

  1. Higher Competency Levels. This means shorter time spent by your employees to complete a certain piece of job.
  2. Higher Work Accuracy. There are fewer mistakes and thus less instances of tasks being re-done.
  3. Cost Cutting. Overhead costs are reduced.
When employees demonstrate the expected behaviors, it demonstrates that training programs are achieving their targets. This is 'return on investment' of the training given.

Employee Attitude
Your employees cannot remain passive with regard to the importance of training that improves his or her working life.

The reality is that some of your employees will not like to attend any training. They will give seemingly good reasons.

Clearly explain to them that this 'refusal to learn' is not only detrimental to the organization's position but will jeopardize their career progression.

You can make non-attendance as contrary to organization's policy on quality customer service and performance improvement.

This can lead to disciplinary action if attendance at training programs is specified as part of the employment terms.

It is better to persuade your people to attend training rather than threaten them with disciplinary action. Discuss with your people what they are good at. Identify their potential. Build on these talents and potential.

When you conduct training evaluation, remember that employees' commitment to learning is essential. The more they know the more confident they will become. Employees' willingness affects how successful your training programs are.

Ensure that the types of training and development you provide are suitable for each employee individually. Also take into consideration the circumstances at that particular period of time.

Personal development is important, such as developing your employees' inter-personal and intra-personal skills. This is in part recognition of the importance of emotional intelligence of people.

Ponder on the argument of Erik Erikson that training needs "vary according to age and stages of life."

People require life skills apart from skills in the performance of their job.

It is necessary to remember this especially if you live in a country that has legislation specifying that any decision based on the age of an employee is subject to anti-discrimination laws.

The Training Evaluation Process

  1. Identify or determine the organizational and department training objectives;
  2. Identify the training needs of employees, and their present skills and knowledge;
  3. Determine whether the course contents are right, or
  4. Plan, design and prepare the training program against the training objectives;
  5. Identify the right training providers;
  6. Complete training assessment form, stating what attendees had learned;
  7. Employee prepares action plan for improvement;
  8. Make observation on the employee's performance over time;
  9. Interview employee to confirm observation results. The supervisor can do this.
  10. Compare current performance to previous performance level. These are sometimes referred to as current competency level and required competency level.
  11. Calculate RO1 (Return on Investment) on training provided.

How To Conduct Training Evaluation

Kirkpatrick shows us how to do it.

  1. To what extent were the identified training objectives achieved?
  2. To what extent were the trainees' objectives achieved?
  3. What did the employees learn?
  4. What is the commitment that employees had made to implement what they had learned?
  5. What was the extent of employees' success in implementing their action plans?
  6. What was the extent of support by line managers?
  7. What was the extent of Return on Investment, measured either in terms of attainment of the defined objectives , where possible, in monetary terms?

You will need adequate resources to conduct a proper training assessment.

The evaluation must produce good reliable data. When there is none, you will never know the effectiveness of your training and development programs.

Caution is advised when you conduct training evaluation. Wrong assessment can affect your employees' self-esteem and confidence.

Report and Review of Training Plan and Programs
Once you have the evaluation results, prepare a report for senior management.

Recommend necessary changes to the training and development plan after review.

Address the weaknesses well to prevent reduction in budgetary provisions. Continue to convince senior management of the importance of training and employee development.

The training evaluation report is of interest to:

  1. Trainers
  2. Your organization
  3. Senior management
  4. Employees who underwent the training

The report must demonstrate that the training budget is justified.

Having the training and development budget reduced is disastrous for your plans to improve employees' performance and increase their contribution to the overall organizational productivity.

Conduct training evaluation that supports continuous development of the workforce.

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