Today as work environment requires employees to be skilled in performing complex tasks in an efficient, cost-effective, and safe manner. Training is needed when employees are not performing up to a certain standard or at an expected level of performance. The difference between actual level of job performance indicates a need for training. The identification of training needs is the first step in a uniform method of instructional design.
A successful training needs analysis will identify those who need training in what kind of training is needed. It is counter-productive to offer training to individuals who do not need it or to offer the wrong kind of training. A Training Need Analysis helps to put the training resources to good use.
WHY DO A TRAINING NEED ANALYSIS?
A Training need analysis information on the training and skills development requirements of all members of your network. It is the one of the key steps in preparing a training plan and will provide you with information on which to base your networks training plan for the year.
It enables you to:
- Identify the gap between current and required levels of knowledge, skills and aptitude.
- Identify what the general content of training should be
- Form the foundation of a training plan
- Provide the base line for the evaluation of a training plan
- Ensure that appropriate and relevant training is delivered
- Maximize use if scarse resources
BENEFITS OF A TRAINING NEEDS ANALYSIS
- Identifies performance goals and the knowledge, skills and abilities needed by a company as workforce to achieve those goals
- Identifies gaps in training provision in sectors and or regions
- Helps direct resources to areas of greatest priority
- Addresses resources needed to fulfil the organizational mission, improve productivity and provide quality products and services
Training must be relevant to member companies and meet their needs while simultaneously enhancing the staff as existing skill levels. By conducting an extensive Train Need Analysis for your network and delivering training to meet the requirements of member companies, and companies can experience a variety of benefits such as improved profitability, lower staffing costs, production improvements and staff development. The focus should be placed on the collective needs identified by member companies that add value and impact to their competitiveness while also developing the employability of the workforce.
TYPES OF NEED ANALYSIS:
- Organizational Analysis
- Person analysis
- Work analysis/ Task analysis
- Performance analysis
- Content analysis
- Training suitability analysis
- Cost-benefit analysis
KNOWLEDGE, SKILLS AND ABILITIES
Today as workplace often requires employees to be independent thinkers responsible for making good decisions based on limited information. This kind of work may require training if the employee does not have these skills. Below is a list of various competencies that employees may be required to possess in order to perform their jobs well.
- Analytical skills
- Action Orientation
- Business knowledge
- Employee Development
- Customer Focus
- Decision Making
- Fiscal Management
- Global Perspective
- Interpersonal skills
- Establishing objectives
- Risk Management
- Persuasion and Influence
- Problem Solving
- Project Management
- Results orientation
Several basic Needs Assessment techniques include;
- Direct observation
- Consultations with person in key positions, and or with specific knowledge
- Review of relevant literature
- Focus groups
- Records and reports studies
- Work samples
CONDUCTING AND ORGANIZATIONAL ANALYSES
Determine what resources are available for training. What are the mission and goals of the organization in regards to employee development? What support will the senior management and managers give towards training?
Is the organization supportive and on-board with this process? Are there adequate resources?
CONDUCTING A WORK ANALYSIS/ TASK ANALYSIS
Interview subject matter experts and high performing employees. Interview the supervisors and managers in charge. Review job descriptions and occupational information. Develop an understanding of what employees need to know in order to perform their jobs.
IMPORTANT QUESTIONS TO ASK WHEN CONDUCTINS A TASK ANALYSIS:
- What tasks are performed?
- How frequently are they performed?
- How important is each task?
- What knowledge is needed to perform the task?
- How difficult Is each task?
- What kinds of training are available?
Observe the employee performing the job. Document the tasks being performed. When documenting the tasks, make sure each task starts with an action verb. How does this task analysis compare to existing job descriptions? Did the task analysis miss any important parts of the job description? Were there tasks performed that were omitted from the job description?
Organize the identified tasks. Develop a sequence of tasks. Or list the task by importance.
Are there differences between high and low performing employees on specific work tasks? Are there differences between Experts and Novices?
Would providing training on those tasks improve employee job performance?
Most employees are required to make decisions based on information. How is information gathered by the employee? What does the employee do with the information? Can this process be trained? Or, can training improve this process?
COGNITIVE TASK ANALYSIS
Develop a model of the task. Show where the decision points are located and what information is needed to make decisions and actions are taken based on that information. This model should be a schematic or graphic representation of the task. This model is developed by observing and interviewing the employees. The objective is to develop a model that can be used to guide the development of training programs and curriculum.
Since the training is based on specific job tasks, employees may feel more comfortable taking the effort to participate in training.
Gather information about how the task is performed so that this can be used to form a model of the task. Review job titles and descriptions to get an idea of the tasks performed. Observe the employee performing the job. Review existing training related to the job. Make sure you observe both experts and novices for comparison.
CONDUCTING A PERFORMANCE ANALYSIS:
This technique is used to identify which employees need the training. Review performance appraisals. Interview managers and supervisors. Look for performance measures and goals.
Sources of performance data:
- Performance appraisals
- Quotas met
- Performance Measures
- Safety incidents
- Units per day
- Units per week
- Customer complaints
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