Identifying training needs - checklist

Identifying training needs - checklistRead our tips on how to identify training needs and keep your staff's skills up to date so they can carry out their jobs effectively

  • Review your business objectives and identify critical activities.
  • Set measurable performance standards - for example, measures of production efficiency or marketing success.
  • Monitor performance to identify problem areas.
  • Get feedback from customers, suppliers and other key business partners. Consider using interviews or surveys in areas such as customer satisfaction.
  • Ask employees to raise concerns and make suggestions for training that could improve output, quality or customer satisfaction in line with your business objectives.
  • Discuss training needs with employees during employee performance management meetings.
  • Identify any dependencies - for example, where only one employee has crucial skills or knowledge.
  • Review any legal requirements such as the requirement for health and safety training.
  • Review any changes you plan or expect (eg new products, procedures or technologies); identify potential weaknesses and problems.
  • Consider how employees’ roles may change - for example, your plans to promote individuals and to develop new employees.
  • Prioritise problem areas or areas of weakness.
  • Assess how improving systems or equipment could contribute to resolving problems.
  • Review whether poor performance is due to bad management rather than lack of training - for example, a failure to agree clear objectives and motivate employees.
  • Consider whether your expectations are realistic given the calibre or number of employees available, and if you need to recruit new talent or reassign roles.
  • Assess whether training will be an effective solution, employees’ willingness to learn and their preferred learning style.
  • Identify training options (eg job shadowing, distance learning or external training courses); set clear objectives for training activities.
  • Implement a pilot training scheme and review the outcome before rolling the programme out.
  • Consider training champions to disseminate best practise and run in-house training for colleagues.
  • Regularly review the outcome of training to identify further training needs and to assess the effectiveness of your training needs analysis.

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