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December 14, 2012

Ways to Measure Training Success

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Jeff Cochran

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Training your team to be the best they can be is neither cheap nor easy. However, the ROI of a successful training program makes it all worth it in the end. In fact, with the proper training methods and materials, your company’s employees can give your bottom line a tremendous boost.

But once the work of training is done, how can you measure its success? Business training pioneer Donald Kirkpatrick was famous for being one of the first people to critically evaluate the success of training programs.

Kirkpatrick developed a four-step model that everyone in the training industry knows. The basic Kirkpatrick evaluation method asks four things:

1. What was the participant’s reaction to the training?This is often judged on a scale of 1-10 by asking the participant about impressions and general feelings about the training program.

2. What did the participant learn? This can be measured through evaluation tests.

3. How did the participant transfer learning back to the workplace? This can be more difficult to determine, but is analyzed with further surveys and observation.

4. What overall results did the training have on the business? Again, measuring the direct ROI of the training in terms of sales, revenues, and customer satisfaction can be challenging. However, through formulas and analytical models, fairly accurate dollar amount values can be applied to individuals’ training experiences.

 

Measuring Your Company’s Training Success

You can measure the success of a training program within your company yourself or with the help of a professional training firm. Depending on the complexity of the training program and the scale on which it’s implemented, you might choose to do it yourself or hire an outside performance improvement firm.

Have more questions about how to evaluate training success in your company? Leave them in the comments section where we see them and respond.

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