Effective Employee Training and Needs Assessment

What else should Fred do before choosing a training package?

Before choosing a training package, Fred should have carried out an extensive analysis of the company’s performance, tasks, and objectives. While proposing personalized training, employees should be familiar with all the peculiarities of customers they deal with, as well as the new clients that could be attracted by the products. Personalized training fails to provide employees with background information on the commercial and marketing situation at the company (Blanchard & Thacker, 2012). Hence, the pre-training procedures should involve evaluation of the job environment that covers each aspect of the operational dimension.

If you were the training consultant that Fred hired, describe how you would plan for the training. How would you create work simulations for Fred’s store? (1 example)

The first stage of implementing training programs involves needs assessment that should protect the assets and objectives of an organization, as well as assure that the resources are used to address the main purposes of the training process. More importantly, the needs assessment can help to determine whether employees realize the deficiency gap in the organization (Barbazette, 2006). Hence, the primary goal of the organization is to improve knowledge and skills to resolve the problem. A further stage of assessment should involve identifying stakeholders involved in the training program, including employees and their clients. Using a cross-functional task to conduct a needs assessment would be appropriate.

As an example, it is possible to divide employees into two groups, in which the first group will perform the role of service providers whereas the second one will be customers who search for specific needs and services. The group of providers should split into three groups of 7-9 people to create their fictional companies that should develop a logo and advertising of the same product from the hardware store. Additionally, the providers should provide a 10-minute presentation after which the clients should choose which company they would address and why. As soon as the winner is chosen, all the employees should discuss the reasons why one group has won and another one has lost.

How successfully do you think this training will be? Why? What Factors or information from the case analysis influenced your position?

The training will be successful provided pre-training procedures have been carried out properly. Employees need to understand the main goals and objectives of an organization unless they should contribute to the higher quality of customer service relationships. Because the main problem of the company consists of pitfalls of pricing policy, personalized training cannot solve this problem appropriately because it focuses on different dimensions of service and product development (Tobey, 2005). Therefore, employees need to gain a broader idea about the pricing strategies and managerial structure of the new department. As soon as these issues are considered, it is possible to define the objectives of the future training program, as well as an outline which steps could be taken in case the training turns out to be ineffective.

According to the case analysis, Fred had $ 20,000 left in his budget. What could he do with that money to further advance the organizational goal of personal service for customers?

There are two ways of using this budget limit. The first one is to take on the seminar course for $ 8,000 for employees to learn the recent trends in customer service relationships. This course could the introduction to the next stage of the program training. The rest 12.000 could be spent on research analysis of the new customer segment. The research could involve a cross-sectional study and interview of potential consumers of the hardware that could be useful for employees to widen their knowledge about consumer behavior.

The second variant implies investing money into the development of the new pricing strategies or advertising campaigns for the products to gain a competitive advantage over other products with cheaper prices.

References

Barbazette, J. (2006). Training Needs Assessment: Methods, Tools, and Techniques. US: John Willey & Sons.

Blanchard, P. B., & Thacker, J. W. (2012) Effective training: Systems, strategies, and practices (5th ed.). NY: Prentice Hall.

Tobey, D. D. (2005). Needs Assessment Basics: A Complete, How-to Guide to Help You: Design Effective, On-Target Training Solutions, Get Support, Ensure Bottom Line Impact. US: American Society for Training and Development.