Measure Employee Training Effectiveness & Maximize Survey Response Rates

Always plan to measure employee training effectiveness.

Maximize your Return On Investment (ROI) and the value to participants by identifying where training objectives have been reached and where they may have slipped. Measuring employee training effectiveness also provides insight if a refresher course is needed (often cheaper than the initial training), and/or additional incentive by management is required.

Two of my golden rules:

  1. Employees do what is measured, incented, and celebrated
  2. People often take the path of least resistance (i.e.: change is sometimes difficult)

Different types of information can be measured and the Kirkpatric Model is a great guide by providing four levels. These levels are:

  • Level 1. How did participants react to the program?
  • Level 2. To what extent did participants improve knowledge and skills and change attitudes?
  • Level 3. To what extent did participants change their behaviour back in the workplace?
  • Level 4. What organizational benefits resulted from the training?

As the Kirkpatric levels increase (1 to 4), the length of time required and the cost to measure employee training effectiveness also increases. Therefore, I recommend building the cost of training evaluation into the objectives and upfront costs. This is an additional way to ensure executive management has bought into the evaluation concept and to ensure it will be implemented.

Email surveys and on-line surveys are becoming the most common and most easily implementable. There are both paid and free services. The right solution for you depends on your objectives and the information you measure – as well as your frequency.

Always consider your audience and determine how you can maximize email response or on-line response of feedback forms or surveys. It’s likely different audiences may need different approaches and even incentives.

10 Tips to help Maximize Email Response or On-Line Response:

  1. Let participants know it’s coming and when to look for it.
  2. Let them know how important their feedback is.
  3. Give them an incentive – perhaps a book draw (something related to the training).
  4. Keep the subject short, specific and relevant (clearly related to the course material).
  5. Keep your survey as short as possible.
  6. Make the questions easy to answer.
  7. Send it from an email address that is clearly you /your organization.
  8. Ensure confidentiality.
  9. Thank them for their feedback (always protect your brand reputation).
  10. Be ready to politely follow-up on your request.

A best practice related to but not directly connected to getting participants to open and respond is to re-evaluate regularly. This is almost never done but a great opportunity to ensure your employee training hasn’t been a waste. Perhaps at:

  • 1 day
  • 1 week
  • 1 month
  • 3 months

Conclusion:

Training is an important part of an individuals and organizations success. It helps align performance measurements and expectations. This (should), lead to productivity improvements, time and material savings, improved quality of your product / service and even a more motivated workforce as they see you investing in their futures.

So, get maximum benefit out of your employee training. Plan to measure training impact.

Imagine work being easier. Imagine work being more productive.

Happy communicating.

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About Bruce Mayhew
Bruce Mayhew is a Leadership Coach, Keynote Speaker and Corporate Trainer who builds strong client and co-worker relationships that give clients a competitive advantage. Our training and development programs include: ■Generational Differences ■Effective Business Email Writing ■Email Etiquette ■Phone Etiquette ■Behaviour Event Interviewing (BEI) ■Mindfulness ■Using Linkedin to Build Client Relationships ■Objective Setting Made Easy

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