Don’t rush into training! – Investment – Cost – Feel Good?


The number of times people tell me. “That training was a waste of time.”

It has never failed to bemuse me the organizations’ that proudly state the percentage of training dollars they spend every year.

It is like a proud boast that they put monies aside to develop their people. Is it feel good, a cost or an investment? Can you really afford to spend money and not get a return on it? Where is the ROI?

My question is WHY?

It is rare that I have discussed this issue with business and find they actually know why they send people on training programs AND evaluate the effectiveness of the training.

Now effectiveness is an interesting word so I will summarize what SHOULD happen.

  • Has a business case proposal been pulled together BEFORE the training is identified. How has it been prioritized with other key training needs?
    • “We go on training but there is little prioritization as there is no evaluation of what is the most important thing we need to focus on. They say it’s all important.”
  • Has there been an effective review of the different types of training that would meet your needs?
    • “Someone said look at a catalogue or a flyer came across my desk and we thought it looked good. We did not do any real research.”
  • How has the training been aligned to the goals and targets of the individual being sent on the training?
    • “ My boss said I needed to learn this…and that was how I went to that specific training. We did not look at anything in specific terms.”
  • How are you going to measure that the training actually met the needs you IDENTIFIED BEFORE YOU DID THE TRAINING?
    • “ We didn’t actually talk about how we would measure what would improve when I came back from training. In fact all that happened was I was asked. Was it good and did I enjoy it.”
  • How do you evaluate the training so that others may go there?
    • “There is no rhyme or reason as to what training people go on. There is no training log that references’ with notes for other employees to review.”
  • Does your expectation of the training meet the culture of your organization?
    • “I tried to implement what I learned but got nowhere, no-one else was interested in making the changes that I learned that would improve what we did.”
  • When will you actually use what you just learned?
    • “ I went on the training course but I never did put anything into practice.”
  • When you put that new technology capital RFP together did you include the costs of training?
    • “We got all this new technology but the training to use it was minimal so it took us a long time to make the best of it.”

Remember Training without context; purpose or immediate relevance is often wasted.

Before embarking on training look at this checklist. It will ensure investment and focus!

picture courtesy of  PublicDomainPictures.net

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About HRMexplorer

Managing Director - Human Capital Europe and USA - My ability is to recognize ingrained assumptions and patterns of operation that aren’t productive, and offer practical, cost-effective and value-based solutions.

Posted on November 15, 2012, in HRMexplorer Blogs and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. So very true! Trainers would save time, effort, and resources (not to mention the pain they inflict on the learners) if they conducted a proper training needs assessment as well as a proper analysis (the first step in the ADDIE process). I’m also a big fan of piloting courses to ensure that you are accomplishing your objectives and thus getting proper return on investment. It’s not about the amount of money you spend on training, it’s what you get out of it that matters!

  1. Pingback: Don’t rush into training! – Investment – Cost – Feel Good? | Business Management & Sustainable Development | Scoop.it

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