Step 2 – Plan
The Planning Stage closely follows the Investigation Stage. Together, Investigation and Planning activities strategically connect the workforce training and development to business goals for the company. The reasons to conduct training differ for individual companies, ranging from improved competitiveness to better productivity, to scrap reduction on the manufacturing floor, to eliminating downtime. There are several key activities during this Planning Stage:
1. Develop a strategic training plan
- The training plan must be well-defined and developed so that all people involved are well-informed of what needs to be done and how it will be accomplished. Often, the key factor during planning is deciding how to correlate business drivers to the actual training and development plan. This sounds like common sense, but it is often is overlooked. Management may realize that training of the workforce is necessary and begin to train without understanding how it affects business. The proper way to develop this strategic training plan is to look at what needs to be improved or maintained by the company to be successful. This is where training should begin, and this is where the strategic training plan will help.
2. Define the scope of the training program
- For a training program to succeed, it must be carried out in manageable stages. Because companies have limited resources (both in terms of personnel and finances), proper staging is essential. The scope of the program not only defines the entire breadth of the training initiative but also defines each step along with its expected completion.
3. Establish procedures
- To ensure that the training program will be a success, organization and consistency are keys. This organization and consistency are carried out through the establishment of procedures for the training program. These procedures can as address a range of activities, from the way training programs are presented to students, to the way the data from the training is reported to management.
4. Write a training business Case
- The business case allows the people in charge of the training within the company to formally document why the training is needed and how it will be beneficial to the company. An effective business case includes the mission and the vision of the training program, along with the details on how the training will be completed, including benchmarks and outcomes.