It is a given in training and development that your best-laid plans tend to change. But having an idea of the organization’s future needs can at least prepare you for what might be coming. In fact, a future training needs assessment is probably something that should occur on a regular basis, even after you’ve initially assessed the organization. For example, you may want to assess for future or anticipated needs at the beginning of every calendar or fiscal year. Let’s define future and anticipated training needs and then look at some ways to assess them.
By Bryant Nielson, Managing Director On October 19, 2010 NO COMMENTS
Summary: As you are assessing your organization’s training needs, remember that some needs occur because they are required or because they recur on a frequent basis, or both. Let’s explore this area of needs assessment.
While you are conducting an overall needs assessment, you may find that certain training needs must be repeated, while some of them are requirements of a job or a job family. In fact, you may have already uncovered some of these needs as you delved into the areas of job and task related training. But it’s a good idea to categorize these needs separately so that they can be integrated into the overall training plan on a regular or required basis. For the purposes of this discussion, let’s work with training needs in the following categories: recurring, required, and both recurring and required.
By Bryant Nielson, Managing Director On October 12, 2010 NO COMMENTS
As you are assessing your organization’s training needs, don’t forget about leadership, talent management, and succession planning. It’s true that you’ve probably identified some leadership and management training needs in the other areas of assessment. But remember that an organization is most likely going to need training that is specifically for the purpose of retaining talent, building a leadership pool, and ensuring that skills exist to cope with loss of leadership, whether sudden or not. Obviously this area of skills and knowledge works hand-in-hand with career development and job-related training to form a full development complement for the population. Let’s examine these areas and then discuss assessment methods.
By Bryant Nielson, Managing Director On October 5, 2010 NO COMMENTS
Career development training needs typically fall outside of the black-and-white specifics of a particular job or job family. Or, they can be related to one job family such as managers and supervisors. Career development needs can be soft skills, skills that are needed to move to the next logical job or job family, or skills that may be needed to move to the next logical horizontal job or job family. Let’s look at each skill area and then discuss how you can best assess those needs.
Soft skills can be located both within a job and outside of a job. For example, customer service skills may almost certainly be required of customer service reps who face the customer population. But what about “back office” employees who never face customers but have their own internal customers? What about the overall customer service philosophy of the organization? Does this knowledge need to be imparted to all employees at all levels? The overall philosophy also leads to areas such as the organization’s mission, values, and overall goals.