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How to Create an Effective Training & Development Process - HRDQ

How to Create an Effective Training & Development Process

Do you want to learn how to create an effective training and development process? If you want to set your employees and business up for success, this is a crucial task. Below, we’ll dive into everything you need to know to get started improving your staff.

HRDQ offers a fully customizable virtual training library, so you can provide specialized training content to your team no matter where they are. Explore the Reproducible Training Library.

Why Do You Need Training?

The initial point you need to identify is why you’re seeking to train your employees. Some examples include:

  • You’re trying to keep up with industry trends.
  • You’re hoping to solve an employee behavioral problem.
  • You need onboarding training for daily processes.
  • You want to get your supervisors on the same page.

Once you answer this question, you can then start to set realistic, pointed goals for your training and development.

What Are Your Goals?

Next, you need to identify SMART goals for your training and development program. SMART goals are:

  • Specific. Your goals should never be vague.
  • Measurable. You should have a method for determining if the goal was met.
  • Achievable. Setting practical goals that are within reach is crucial for success.
  • Relevant. Your goals should be relevant to the reason you decided your employees need training. You might even align your goals with your workplace culture and values.
  • Time-bound. Give your goals a set time in which they must be met.

We also recommend dividing your goals into short- and long-term goals. Your short-term goals should be achieved by the end of the training session, and you should have at least five.

Long-term goals are where the “development” part of your training comes in. You need to ensure that your training is successful not just in the present, but also in the future. Identify two long-term goals that indicate your team is continually applying what they’ve learned to bring about improvement.

Assess Your Staff

Before you move forward with the creation of your materials, it’s very useful to assess your staff prior to training. This will provide you with a baseline that you can later use to measure the completion of your SMART goals. Plus, it may also reveal other problem areas that you should target in your session.

At HRDQ, we offer a library of online assessments that allow you to track employee progress, receive instant test results, and create customized reports. Explore the HRDQ Online Assessment Center.

Turn Your Goals into Modules

With your goals clearly defined, you can create an outline for your training session. Each of your short-term goals can be converted into modules. There should be various objectives that must be met in order to complete the module, such as first learning a definition, understanding why it’s important, and real-world application. Start breaking down each of your short-term goals to create the learning content for your training session.

Decide Your Training Method(s)

The next decision you have to make is how you’d like to deliver your training. First, ask yourself if it makes more sense to deliver your materials in person, virtually, or both:

  • In-person training is useful when you’re teaching someone a hands-on skill, such as how to operate machinery or physically create something. It may also be necessary and helpful for team-building activities.
  • Virtual training is effective for most topics, other than hands-on skills. It allows your employees to learn in a comfortable space, offers more flexibility, and often improves retention. Plus, it’s budget-friendly, cutting out costs for travel, a venue, catering, and more.
  • A mixture of both can also be a great way to deliver your materials. Perhaps you teach your employees a new skill or work as a team in person, then ask your participants to complete an online module about the session at their convenience.

You also have to decide how you’re going to deliver your learning content. It’s best to use several types of materials to keep your participants engaged and energized. Some materials you might use for your modules include:

  • Activities
  • Assessments
  • Games
  • Simulations
  • Books
  • Lecture
  • PowerPoint
  • Videos

Gather Your Training Resources

You can’t start training and developing your employees without gathering the necessary resources. Depending on whether you’re using in-person training, virtual training, or both, some resources you need to start gathering include:

  • Software to begin designing your training program.
  • Instructors to help deliver content.
  • Materials such as workbooks, pencils, paper, etc.
  • A venue to host the session.

Practice & Implement the Program

With your learning content created, and your materials gathered, it’s time to implement your program. However, it’s usually beneficial to do a test-run of the session at least twice before you present to your audience. This will help you improve your speaking, notice modules that are too lengthy, find mistakes, and time your training program. After all, practice makes perfect!

Complete an Analysis

After you’ve delivered your training, check to make sure your short-term goals were met. You can do this in two ways:

  • Ask participants to re-take the assessment that you originally delivered and compare new results to their baseline
  • Watch to see if employees are implementing their new knowledge in the workplace

If the assessment indicates your participants improved, and they are applying what they learned, it’s an indication that your program was successful in the short-term.

After about a year, look back at your long-term goals. Has your company improved overall since the training, or has it stayed the same? Did your employees continue to use the new skills they learned, or did they fall off the wagon after six months? It’s extremely important to analyze your results, so you can continually adjust your training for success.

Regularly Seek Out Best Practices

Often, a single training session isn’t enough to fully develop your team. That’s why you should regularly seek out areas that need improvement and best practices for your employees. With continual training, you’ll find that participants will better retain and apply what they learn. Development takes time and practice, so never be complacent when it comes to training your team.

Start Virtual Training with HRDQ

Now that you know how to create an effective training and development process, get started with HRDQ today!

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About our author

Bradford R. Glaser

Brad is President and CEO of HRDQ, a publisher of soft-skills learning solutions, and HRDQ-U, an online community for learning professionals hosting webinars, workshops, and podcasts. His 35+ years of experience in adult learning and development have fostered his passion for improving the performance of organizations, teams, and individuals.