Identifying Training Needs
The first step of the process of training and development is identification of the organizational needs for trained manpower, both present and future. Basically some questions can be used in this step.
a) What specifically must an employee learn in order to be more productive?
b) Where is training needed?
c) Who needs to be trained?
The productiveness of an employee is the important factor for the employer, because the income or profit of the organization and employer depends on the employees’ productiveness.
In order to clearly identify the training needs of the organisation, we firstly need to assess the current status of the company; how it does, what it does best and the abilities of the employees to do these tasks. A Training Needs Analysis (TNA) is used to assess the same. This is an assessment of the gap between the knowledge, skills and attitudes that the people in the organization currently possess and the knowledge, skills and attitudes that they require to meet the organization’s objectives. Also, a skills inventory can help determine the skills possessed by the employees in general. This inventory will help the organization determine what skills are available now and what skills are needed for future development.
Training & development need = standard (expected) performance - actual performance
Secondly, it is important to consider whether the organization is financially committed to support the training efforts. If not, any attempt to develop a solid training program will fail.
Sources that can help determine the organisational needs for training in a particular situation are described below:
• Context Analysis. This analysis answers questions like: who decides that training should be conducted, why a training program is seen as the recommended solution to a business problem, what the history of the organization has been with regard to employee training and other management interventions.
• User Analysis. The questions answered here are: who will receive the training and their level of existing knowledge on the subject, what is their learning style, and who will conduct the training.
• Work analysis. This analysis seeks to specify the main duties and skill level required. This helps ensure that the training which is developed will include relevant links to the content of the job.
• Content Analysis. Analysis of documents, laws, procedures used on the job. This analysis answers questions about what knowledge or information is used on this job. It is important that the content of the training does not conflict or contradict job requirements. An experienced worker can assist (as a subject matter expert) in determining the appropriate content.
• Training Suitability Analysis. Analysis of whether training is the desired solution. Training is one of several solutions to employment problems. However, it may not always be the best solution.
• Cost-Benefit Analysis. Analysis to determine the return on investment (ROI) of training. Effective training results in a return of value to the organization that is greater than the initial investment to produce or administer the training.
These can be carried out through questionnaires, observance, interview methods, self-assessment schedules, asking for suggestions, conducting panel discussions and asking a consultant or an outsider to give his opinion.