A strong employee training plan can qualify as the backbone of an organization and not just a way to train the employees. If it is done right, it can help you handle change, transformation, and disruption. An employee training plan should not only enhance the skills of employees but should also be equipped with strategies to manage unexpected situations like the one the world faced in 2020.
Studies suggest that 40% of employees will leave their job within the first year due to poor employee training. And hiring a new frontline worker may cost a minimum of $2500.
Creating an employee training plan can be as challenging as handling change management and at times it could be overwhelming. But it is a must-have, doing a shoddy job while creating the plan could impact the business outcomes and bottom-line of the organization.
So, in the article, we have discussed how to create an employee training plan to get better results.
The plan includes comprehensive details about the elements needed to create training content, training requirements, coordination of training schedule, etc. The training plan is used to create an employee training program to teach the employees about the application, job, and business processes to generate better outcomes.
It should also include the target audience and the type of training program, curriculum, schedule, and tools required to make the said audience, efficient and productive.
Employee training plans and Employee training programs are often considered the same but they both are different. A training program is a subset of the training plan- it acts as a tool that helps the organization realize the objectives set while creating the training plan.
There are a variety of training programs like instructor-led training, simulation program, eLearning, hand-on-training, etc., that help companies achieve their goals and boost employee performance. A company usually selects a combination of these programs to achieve its end goal.
How to Create an Employee Training Plan?
Often companies look to cover all aspects in one go and create a complex plan which requires a lot of resources, manpower, and attention.
Instead, create a plan that your organization can manage and follow.
1. Identify Your Employee’s Training Needs
It is in the best interest of the organization to do an employee training needs analysis that helps you to understand what the employees expect from the training.
Based on this analysis, you can easily set the training goals that align with organizational objectives and employee's aspirations.
The needs of the employees will change with time and their objectives. So, what would be the ideal approach to identify employees’ training needs?
You can identify it by preparing questionnaires, interviews, observation, and analyzing employee performance.
2. Aligning Training to Business Goals
Now that you have decided on the employee training goals, it is time to align them with business outcomes and overall organizational goals.
The training plan helps you strategize the employee training program which has a series of courses and modules which employees have to complete to become familiar with the application.
To make the training hyper-targeted businesses must tie each module or action taken by employees to business outcome. This is necessary to measure the success of the training program and plan. If you are not able to get the desired outcome from the training, then you go back to the drawing board and analyze what is going wrong.
To analyze better how your employees are using any application before and after the training you can use a Digital Adoption Platform like Apty.
It helps you to identify the potential gaps in your training content. It becomes easy to identify where your employees are spending more time even after full-fledged training. By understanding this, you can improve their training.
Further, analysis of each employee segment is possible using the Digital Adoption Platform which helps you to get an understanding of how each department is using the application post the training. Based on this you can just train those departments that are struggling to use the application and customize the whole training curriculum accordingly for better results.
The Digital Adoption Platform helps you to focus on actual business outcomes by helping you align the training content with the business process.
3. Get Buy-in from the Top-Management
Employee training and onboarding in a big enterprise demand a lot of investment and time. So, if you want to create the perfect training for the employees that consists of state-of-the-art training programs then you need buy-in from the leadership for it to work smoothly.
It is necessary to make them realize the importance of training and help them understand what kind of business outcomes can be generated out of it.
Show them how long it will take and if the results are required immediately then explain it to them what type of training program is required and how much investment is needed to realize it. This will help you to win their trust and they would understand that the effort is made in the right direction.
Further, keep them in the loop throughout the training journey of the employees and share the impact created out of your training initiatives this will help them see the value and results created out of training.
In general, upper management understands the importance of training but often they want immediate results so it is in this case where you have to explain to them how long it will take to generate results and why.
4. Find Out About Training Resources
We already know training needs a lot of investment and manpower. It is imperative to learn about the current state of training.
This will help you to understand :
- How much existing training content you have and can those be reused?
- Which type of training program is in place and can there be any improvement in the existing one?
- Do you really need any new training program if yes, then how long it will take to implement it?
- Do you need an in-house training curator or can this be outsourced?
- How long will it take to cover the current training gaps and how much budget is required?
- Will the training program be able to address the immediate need of the organization?
- Does the company have necessary modern training tools by its side?
- Will the existing training methods, programs, and tools complement the new ones? If not, then what action can be taken?
It is imperative to have answers to all these questions to create an effective training plan. Training resources are crucial for the company as creating a 1 hour of eLearning course demands 49 hours of minimum effort.
Consider how much budget and support staff you have by your side, then see whether you can accommodate these resources to fill the gap or achieve the set goals. If not, then look for alternative options that can train and onboard the employees while they are doing their job. It will save time, money, effort and will eventually give you the desired result in less time.
5. Develop Your Employee Training Program
Now that you’ve got the management's buy-in, aligned the training objectives with the business goals, and identified the training resources, it is now time that you start planning the training program.
During this phase, you can consult with internal stakeholders and consultants to create a relevant training program. Consider all the factors that we have discussed in previous points to create a training program that adds value to the employees and business.
Think about the combination of training tools, methods and content required to create an effective training program. Understand what type of training is required for each job function by interviewing professionals from different roles and incorporate it into the training program.
You can also use tools like a Digital Adoption Platform to segment employees based on their job function, department, and location. Based on this, you can customize the training content and deliver the training lessons without wasting their time.
To create a training program you need a curriculum, workflow, process, training method, and other necessary tools or software. Consider using tools or software that can enable remote training and provide equally good results if not better.
Once you have a clear picture it is time to test, test and test. It is important to check the impact of training programs on smaller groups before scaling it across the organization. You can create more than 2 training programs and check them across multiple groups simultaneously.
The one which gives the desired result should be scaled and used across the company and must be tweaked regularly based on the analysis and feedback of employees.
Relevant read: New employee training best practices
6. Measure, Reassess and Improve Over Time
Employee training programs should always evolve as the needs of the employees and the organization changes with time. Even if you have an incredible training program there will be areas that can be improved.
Iteration is necessary to make the employee training plan successful. Regular analysis of how the employees are interacting with the training content and the application will give you an idea of how effective the whole training plan is.
Across any industry, engagement rate is considered an important factor to measure as it indicates that the employees are happy with the training. No doubt it is a good metric to measure but it gives you only a vague picture.
If the organization only measures the engagement rate, they will learn how long the employees spend their time with training content and the application they use. It does not allow you to measure the effectiveness of the outcome.
Secondly, there must be a tool that can help you measure, assess and improve the training program. Apty a Digital Adoption Platform helps you do just that.
When you include mainstream training methods in your training program complement it with a Digital Adoption Platform.
Here’s why... An LMS and other online courses are helpful and boost the knowledge of employees with their extensive course but how do you know whether it boosts the performance or not?
With a Digital Adoption Platform like Apty, you can not only create in-app training but also measure the engagement rate, effectiveness, and business outcome generated out of the training. This will help you to measure and improve not only the training program but also the overall employee training plan.
Training is not about creating PDFs, or fancy courses. It is about making the employees more valuable, effective, and productive to get the desired business outcomes. Whether or not it is a new employee, the approach doesn’t change even though the plan might. Irrespective of the training plan, or strategy you need to measure to improve it, and Apty helps you do just that.