Creating a training program for providing employees L&D opportunities is a significant investment. It helps employees learn better ways to do their jobs and acquire new skill sets. It also drives employee performance and increases employee retention rates.
Digital learning solutions have helped in lowering training costs remarkably. This is because the need for a training venue, printed training material, travel to training venues, instructor fees, etc is eliminated.
But for a business to benefit from online training solutions, the program has to be very effective. But is it possible to measure the effectiveness of a training program? First, let’s have a look at what training effectiveness means.
It refers to the level of improvement a training program can bring about in employee performance. It is a measure of the quality of training and helps in determining if all the set goals were met.
Why must you measure training effectiveness?
Since there is a lot of effort, money, and research that goes into building an employee training program, understanding its effectiveness is crucial to determine whether or not the investment was worthwhile.
Businesses employ L&D professionals for creating these learning & training programs. Training metrics can help determine if they have understood employee learning needs well and if they are delivering expected results.
Training programs help in boosting engagement and are a major aspect that influences employee retention rate. If the training is not effective, this will start reflecting poorly and it can prove to be very disastrous for the company as they start losing high-potential employees.
If you are expecting better performance and higher productivity from your employees but they fail to deliver, one of the reasons could be insufficient training. There may be gaps in your training material which is preventing employees from utilizing the training knowledge in their work.
For all these reasons, it makes perfect sense for an organization to evaluate the effectiveness of a training program. Now that you are aware of its importance, here are the top 3 ways to evaluate the effectiveness of your training program:
1. Use the Kirkpatrick Evaluation Model
Donald Kirkpatrick created a model that gives a precise measure of the effectiveness of a training program. Called the Kirkpatrick Evaluation Model, it has 4 levels of evaluation and includes every style of training. These 4 levels are Reaction, Learning, Behaviour, and Results.
The first level of Reaction reflects on how valuable the training was for the learners, which helps in understanding learner satisfaction. Level 2, i.e. Learning focuses on what the learner gained from the training and the degree of skill development. You can compare these with your organizational learning objectives to see if they were duly fulfilled.
Behavior is level 3 which sheds light on how effectively employees are able to implement their training knowledge in their everyday work. Finally, Results are the last level helping you identify if the training outcomes are satisfying or not. Level 4 helps in evaluating if training led to a greater Return on Investment (ROI).
2. Use LMS tracking features
An LMS aids the creation, execution, delivery, and management of online training courses. At the same time, an LMS also provides valuable analytics to track employee learning progress. It can shed light on major milestones like course completion and help in understanding whether or not the time taken by employees is sufficient.
An LMS provides metrics on how an employee is engaging with the training content with the help of automated reports. This allows L&D pros to understand the effectiveness of training programs created by them.
For instance, Totara helps in tracking employee learning progress with basic attendance tracking along with keeping track of hours spent on training. This helps in highlighting important statistics; employees spending excessive time on a particular module means that they are finding it challenging. Visit this website for more info.
3. Pre and Post assessments
Training is meant to enhance an employee’s existing skills and enhance their performance. It only makes sense to assess their skills prior to the training to be able to verify if the training has had a positive effect on their performance. For instance, before an employee goes through a training session, create an assessment to evaluate their existing skills.
Then allow them to go through the training program, and post that, assess them for the same skills to understand the growth. Not only is this a great way to understand the advancement of employee knowledge, but also the impact of the training program in enhancing their learning curve.
Using various assessment methods, you can discover exactly how much an employee has gained from the training program. The assessment data also shed light on topics that most employees have skipped and will help you determine whether or not such a topic should be a part of the training content.
4. Conduct surveys
A great way to understand how a training program has been received by the employee is to directly ask the employees. Conducting surveys to get employee input regarding their opinion on the effectiveness of the training program can provide valuable data and shed light on areas that need improvement.
Training programs exist to help employees get better at their jobs. But it may not always be possible to assess individual employee performance. Maybe they learned new skills but were unable to make the most of them. This could mean the training provides knowledge but not enough to help employees perform to the best of their abilities.
Since employees are the ones directly benefiting from the training program, they would want to let you know whether they feel it was worth their time. Their opinion can help you understand how to improve the program to optimize their time and provide better value. Once you know their opinion, you can make the necessary upgrades to enhance its impact.
If a training program is not delivering better employee performance and good ROI, it is basically unsuccessful. To make it successful, use one or more of the above ideas to understand how to evaluate its effectiveness and the best course to take.