Training Needs Analysis
You have been asked to design and deliver training – but – before you start you will need to carry out a Training Needs Analysis. Ideally you will be able to speak to a range of staff including managers, front line staff and subject experts as part of your analysis but sometimes there might not be the opportunity to carry out an extensive analysis. However, there are a few essentials that MUST be covered.
Training Needs Analysis: The 6 Essentials
- WHY is the training needed?
Use the organisation’s business objectives to help establish the training outcomes. What is the training aiming to do – enable staff to provide new services? Increase customer satisfaction? Change the organisational culture?
- WHO needs it?
Be clear about which groups of staff need training. Is it all staff or only those working in specialist teams? Is it staff at all levels? Front-line staff only? Managers?
- WHAT is needed?
What are the new competencies – what do the staff now need to know and be able to do? People in different roles might need differing types of training e.g. some might need only a basic understanding, whilst others need in-depth knowledge and a high level of practical skill.
- HOW should it be delivered?
New knowledge can often be acquired by using online learning. Practical skills usually need to be demonstrated and practised, so ‘classroom-based’ learning or ‘shadowing’ would be more appropriate. Consider how many people need the training; the capacity of the organisation to give people time to complete the training – and costs, including time to develop the training; travel; replacing staff attending training.
- WHEN do they need it?
How long will it take to train all those who need to be trained? If training takes place too long before a new procedure is implemented, it is likely that some people will not remember everything they learned, resulting in a large volume of calls to support staff or even the need for refresher training. Could training be delivered in stages?
- HOW EFFECTIVE has the training been?
Decide at the beginning how you will evaluate the training and take a baseline measurement e.g. current levels of customer satisfaction. All too often evaluation covers only the costs; time taken; and suitability of the delivery method, as these are easy to measure – BUT – your evaluation should also measure whether the training met the desired outcomes e.g. increasing customer satisfaction; meeting the identified skills gap; improving job performance. You will only be able to demonstrate this if you take a baseline measurement at the start.
Guest blogger – Kate Chandler is an experienced Organisational Development Consultant.
Kate is supporting people from Trainer to Coach View more