Creating an Effective Employee Training Plan

It’s important to have an effective employee training plan when working with new employees.

A well thought out employee training plan can provide your employees with ample of opportunities and clear directions to improve their skills and grow in their careers. With more expanded set of skills, they’ll have more tools to improve the overall productivity of your business. Overall, it’s a win-win for your business, as well as your staff.

However, one should remember that an employee training and development plan shouldn’t be created off the cuff. Here are nine tips and guidelines that will help you create an efficient workforce to keep your business functioning at a high level.

1. Identify Business Goals

It’s pretty hard to be successful if you don’t know what exactly you’re aiming for. This is the reason why it is important to conduct brainstorming sessions. These sessions help determine the goals and methods to achieve them. While in one industry, employees need to learn basics of customer service, in another one they’d require to operate on different software to manage core business operations. Regardless of the details, determining your goals, both long and short term will dictate how you should approach employee training plan..

2. Talk To Your Employees

Don’t just assume that you know the skills and career aspirations of your employees. If possible, it is better to have a face-to-face discussion with each team member to get a better understanding about their career goals and how they plan to accomplish them.

You must also focus about challenges that they might be facing in their current position. Do your employees do self-assessment of their work? Would they reap any benefit from further training or mentoring? In what areas they struggle the most?

Some employees may already have dedicated and structured career path in mind. But sometimes they don’t know how to get started with their goals. Having one-to-one conversation with them will help you work with them and make them understand the role that new training and development will play in their career path. Talk about the opportunities you can offer them.

3. Decide On Skills Your Employees Need

Once you’ve spoken to all of your employee, analyze and chart down their abilities and experience. Club them with your business’s needs and decide what kind of skills they want to acquire. Be sure about your employees’ individual goals. They should be specific and timely as it gets difficult to measure an employee’s work progress when their individual career goals are vague or broad.

4. Acquire Training Resources

Unless there is an immediate access to each and every training material, you will need to buy them from appropriate vendors. Training resources might include: computer software, an online course or relevant guidebooks. In some cases, the given material will cover all the aspects of the training process, where you need not perform any customization. But if you think the provided training manual needs some customization, you can always address the specific details of your company.

5. Creating A Schedule

Based on the complexity and length of your employee training plan or program, the completion time and schedule may vary. It might take a few days to several weeks depending upon the agenda of the training being provided. Figure out roughly how long will it take to create a schedule.

You may want to have all the employees attend the training program together or break it down into smaller groups. Take into account potential setbacks and try not to feed your team members with too much information in a short time. Learning a new skill is a gradual process and thus, training should be incorporated in a smooth and subtle manner, where all the employees should get plenty of time to understand concepts and raise doubts.

6. Find A Trainer

Find an experienced trainer who has the expertise on targeted skills. He/she should be able to guide team members throughout to keep things running in a smooth manner. You may even use an in-house manager who has relevant experience or you can simply hire a professional trainer. The work of a trainer will be to lead trainees, answer questions, give lectures, and provide feedback.

7. Communicate Effectively

It is regarded as a smart move to hold a meeting before planning the training sessions. In this meeting you can provide a brief rundown about the program and its significance to the business. Talk about how the new training will help your employees develop new skills that will add value to the resume. Advise everyone to take the course seriously and make most out of it. It is also a good time to answer any concerns and issues that employees may have and clarify them.

8. Track Progress

Creating and implementing an employee training plan is not enough. You’d need to track the progress as well to ensure that it is moving as per the plan. Following up will also keep you in sync with what is being covered in the training and methods of teaching being used.

Break the program down into several sections so you know how far the program has been covered and what’s left.

9. Encourage Feedback

Upon completion, you should get in touch with the HR department and arrange a meet with employees. Ask your HR team to obtain feedback from employees about their training experience. In this session, your employees can also discuss the strengths and weaknesses of the training program. Conducting a one-to-one meeting will be ideal because you’re likely to get more direct and unbiased feedback. This will help you to spot patterns and make amendments wherever necessary. This information should help you fine tune your employee training plan in the future.

An effective and efficiently planned training program is one of the best ways to prepare your employees for success. Equip them with necessary tools and knowledge to help them perform their job in a more cohesive manner. The long-term effects of an employee training plan  will lead to higher productivity, good performance, better company culture, and high revenue.

Check out our employee training plan template.

Jason Silberman
Jason is the former Lead Author & Editor of TrainingStation Blog
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