How to tell if your training program is working

Some businesses just don’t get the message. Training is the difference between success and failure. If your staff aren’t trained as well as your competitors, you’re in trouble. More to the point, your business simply can’t perform at its best, which means that lack of training is directly costing you money. Particularly important is customer service training, which is your primary interface with your market. Get that wrong, and there is no business.

Evaluating your training program

Getting training is only part of the story. To be sure you’ve got a good training program, you need to set standards:

  • The training must be effective.
  • It must deliver measurable results.
  • There should be obvious benefits to the business shown in operational terms, like sales and efficiencies.
  • Operational capabilities should also show clear improvements in productivity and technical capacities.

Training is like education for your business. The better your skills base, the more business you can do. This is particularly important in businesses with a technical service base, like service desk training where your business is often literally defined by your skills and knowledge bases.

If your training program isn’t delivering, you’ll be able to spot the problems easily:

  • Staff retention will be lousy. Training is an incentive to staff, and if training isn’t valuable in career terms, it’s not going to retain staff or staff interest. Worse, it may mean that the training program isn’t offering anything of career value, which is a true sign of a program that’s past its use-by date.
  • Productivity can either be stagnant or minimally improved. This may be a result of a slowdown in business or economic conditions, but it can also mean that the customer base is static, and no new business is being generated.
  • Efficiencies aren’t affected. Training produces measurable efficiency improvements. Reports should show clear improvements in processing times and volumes.
  • Operational reports don’t show a noticeable benefit. This is actually quite unusual with modern training techniques. It means that the training hasn’t affected the business operational areas. Again, this may be a result of other factors, but if you’re doing a combination sales and customer service training program, the business is facing a clear need for improvements.

Making a decision about your training needs

he big issues boil down to some simple choices-

  • Upgrade your training or not?
  • Redefine your training needs?
  • Reevaluate your technical capacity?

If you’re also looking at business development and expanding your business, training can help directly. Growing a business also means growing your in-house skills. Professional trainers can provide good working options for developing your skills base to match your business requirements, literally step by step from development to implementation.

The future of your business devolves on the abilities of your staff. Training is the best way to systematically grow your business and enhance your business capabilities in the market. The choice is yours, but it’s not a difficult one.

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