Tna Training and Development Approach

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Conducting an Effective Needs Assessment
B y T ra c e y L . C e k a d a

IN BRIEF •The first step in developing a training program is to determine whether training is needed. •A training needs assessment provides some certainty that the time, money and resources used to develop and conduct training will deliver desired performance-based results. •How is a training needs assessment conducted? What model can be followed? Does this model work across different disciplines or industries? Answers to these questions can guide the development of an effective training needs assessment.

n employee trips over an open file cabinet drawer. Another has a near hit while standing beneath an overhead hoist. The typical solution: Training, training and more training. But is this really necessary? While workers without occupational safety and health training likely are at greater risk for workplace injury and illness, the critical question is whether the training is adequate (Cohen & Colligan, 1998). Sometimes, too much training can dampen its effectiveness and decrease its credibility. The difference between

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Tracey L. Cekada, D.Sc., CSP, CHSP, is an assistant professor of safety sciences at Indiana University of Pennsylvania. She holds a B.S. in Occupational Health and Safety from Slippery Rock University, an M.S. in Environmental Science and Policy from The Johns Hopkins University, and a D.Sc. in Information Systems and Communications from Robert Morris University. Cekada is a professional member of ASSE’s Western Pennsylvania Chapter.

28 ProfessionalSafety

effective and ineffective training may be death, injury, pain, suffering and lost pro ts (Whiles, 1999). A large amount of time and money is spent on training. In 1992, Broad and Newstrom reported that an estimated $50 billion was spent each year on formal training, with another $90 to $120 billion spent on less-structured, informal training. ASTD (2010) estimates



References: / . (2001). American National Standard Criteria for Accepted Practices in Safety, Health, and Environmental Training (ANSI/ASSE Z490.1-2001). Des Plaines, IL: Author. o o g lop ( A S T D ) . (2010). 2010 ASTD state of the industry report. Alexandria, VA: Author. tt J. (2006). Training needs assessment: Methods, tolls and techniq ues. San Francisco: Pfeiffer. l . o . (2007, Oct.). Safety training: Making the connection to high performance. P rofessional Safety, 5 2( 10), 42-48. o .L. o J. . (1992). Transfer of training. Reading, MA: Perseus Books. o J. (2002, Winter). Training needs assessment: A must for developing an effective training program. P ublic P ersonnel Management, 3 1(4), 569-578. h . o . (2005). The trainer’s tool k it. New York: American Management Association. oh . oll g J. (1998). Assessing occupational safety and health training: A literature review (NIOSH Publication No. 98-145). Cincinnati, OH: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, CDC, NIOSH. h J. Loo . (2000). Advancing safety and health training. Occupational H ealth and Safety, 6 9 , 28-34. L o . (1979, Nov./Dec.). Training needs assessment: Current practices and new directions. P ublic P ersonnel Management, 8 (6), 350-359. p . (1999). A practical guide to needs assessment. San Francisco: Pfeiffer. H . H . (1989). Instructional systems development in large organiz ations. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Educational Technologies Publications. Hol o . . . (2000, Summer). Large-scale performance-driven training needs assessment: A case study. P ublic P ersonnel Management, 29 (2), 249-267. hl . (2002, Feb.). Training transfer strategies for the safety professional. P rofessional Safety, 4 7 (2), 32-34. l . (1998). Conducting a needs analysis. Menlo Park, CA: Crisp Learning. l ll . (1993). Training needs assessment: An “open-systems” application. J ournal of E uropean Industrial Training, 17 (1), 12-17. o ll J. (2003). H ow to identify your organiz ation’s training needs. New York: American Management Association. h . h . (1961). Training in business and industry. New York: Wiley. h l . g . (1979). Mak ing the training process w ork . New York: Harper & Row. ll J. . (1996, Feb.). Training needs assessment. Retrieved Oct. 31, 2011, from . p .o g/p / gg g/ ll .p . ol . h g J. g l h . (1996). Designing instructional systems. In R. Craig (Ed.), The ASTD training and development handbook . New York: McGraw-Hill. o l J. H . (1994). Needs assessment across disciplines. P erformance Improvement Q uarterly, 7 , 60-79. o oh . (2001, May). Safety training that works. P rofessional Safety, 4 6 (5), 33-37. og . (1991). Health and safety training. Accident P revention, 3 8 , 20. o tt . (1987). Training needs assessment. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Educational Technology Publications. o o . (2002, June). Training for the long run. E ngineered Systems, 19 (6), 32. h . (1988). Inside training and development: Creating effective programs. San Diego: University Associates. hl . (1999, Sept.). Workplace training: The learning curve. Occupational H ealth and Safety, 6 8 (9), 10. 34 ProfessionalSafety DECEMBER 2011 www.asse.org Copyright of Professional Safety is the property of American Society of Safety Engineers and its content may not be copied or emailed to multiple sites or posted to a listserv without the copyright holder 's express written permission. However, users may print, download, or email articles for individual use.

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