Training Need Analysis

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European Journal of Scientific Research ISSN 1450-216X Vol.37 No.3 (2009), pp.351-360 © EuroJournals Publishing, Inc. 2009 http://www.eurojournals.com/ejsr.htm

Training Needs Assessment and Analysis: A Case of Malaysian Manufacturing Firms Haslinda Abdullah Faculty of Economics and Management 43400 Selangor, University Putra Malaysia E-mail: hba@putra.upm.edu.my; drhaslinda@gmail.com Abstract This paper aims to investigate the extent to which participating organisations have carried out needs analysis in accordance with their objectives and projected growth. The four areas that will be examined include: first, the proportions of organisations that have performed HRD needs analysis and the frequencies at which these needs analyses were conducted; second, approaches used in identifying HRD needs; third, the levels in needs analysis and; fourth, methods used in analysing HRD needs. A combination of quantitative and qualitative research methods was employed. Survey data was obtained from 365 HRD practitioners and supplemented with interview results from 36 HRD practitioners in manufacturing firms in Malaysia. Training needs assessments in the manufacturing firms are found to be generally performed informally through observations. Size of firms had an effect on the way training needs is being assessed and analysed. The absence of needs assessment and analysis is due to lack of expertise and it is irrespective of the size of firms. The results of this study were obtained from HRD practitioners’ perspective. Caution is advised when generalizing the results, as the employees’ stance was not obtained. This study contributes to HRD practice in several ways. First, it conforms that HRD practitioners do recognize the importance and power of effective needs assessments in helping them plan and strategize for effective HRD activities. Second, it observes a lack of effective resources to help HRD practitioners in conducting needs assessment. Most of the studies on HRD and training are researched in Western countries. Limited empirical evidence can be obtained in Malaysia, particularly from the manufacturing industry. This study presents a comprehensive empirical survey and interviews on HRD needs and assessment in manufacturing firms in Malaysia.

Keywords: HRD, Training, Needs Assessments, Manufacturing Firms, Malaysia

1.0. Introduction
Today, more and more companies are interested in intangible assets and human capital as a way to gain competitive advantage. Training and development can help in supporting company’s competitiveness by increasing the company’s value through contributing to its intangible assets. However, in designing effective training and development programs and activities, the first step in the instructional design process is the most crucial process in which it has to be properly and correctly conducted. Indeed, improperly and incorrect training needs assessments can lead to disastrous effects.

Training Needs Assessment and Analysis: A Case of Malaysian Manufacturing Firms

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In Malaysia, the Government has emphasized on the importance of training and development for employees in the manufacturing sector through various initiatives. For example, in 2007, the Government, through the HRD Council provided about 45 million ringgit of monetary assistance to the manufacturing sector for employees’ training. More than one 1,186 training institutions were also established to support the manufacturing sector other than the introduction and implementation of the HRD Act, 1992. This is because the Government believes that investment in human capital is the key to the success of the country’s economic growth (Ministry of Human Resources, 2009). Hence, with these support from the government and legislations in place, a systematic approach to human resource development is pertinent towards the success of HRD interventions. A systematic approach to HRD should begin by identifying the organisation’s business...
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