Q. Which do you think will influence T&D professionals in organization the most in next decade?
Tools are the supporting players for T&D, it is the Trainer or coacher who plays the major role to make these program effective. Like a teacher needs appropriate book or study material to make the students understand in better manner, similarly a trainer needs appropriate training material or medium to provide Knowledge and Skill to the trainees. In 21st century, I found 3 such tools or medium are extensively in use and will be used more in next 10-15 years. These are diversity in workforce, technology and online learning. These are three essential factors that is going to change T&D experience in future. [Noe, R. A.,et.al2002]
Let us see how-
Diversity in workforce- Today the concept of “Think Global and also Act Global” is getting popular in corporate houses who are looking at global expansion. When an organization goes global, it needs to understand the environment of that place and also requires people to set the business there. For ex- An American Company wants to start business in India will need to understand Indian market closely and also need Indian personnel to build the business there. Today organization is looking for talent and competence without considering the availability at home or in abroad.
So an organization is adding personnel from different culture, ethnicity, language etc. it is obvious that conflict among personnel will rise. Internal conflicts leads to business loss thus these days T&D professionals have found a new way to deal with diversity conflict which is called as Diversity training.
It is an initiative taken by the companies to create awareness regarding diversity issues and bring cohesiveness within employees. Such trainings are given in two ways- firstly, it is to aware people about their prejudice, assumptions and stereotyping attitude towards different culture, religion, race, gender etc. secondly, it is about developing the proficiency in handling diversity. Use of cross-cultural communication, lectures, interactive games etc. help to make the personnel proficient about cultural difference.
Technology- Technology saves time, effort and cost as well. It also makes things easier to understand. Coaches and trainers are now-a-days using more and more technology to teach and train personnel so that they can learn it faster, better and in smarter way. Here are some good examples of use-
Webinars- It is the seminar conducted via web by the trainers to a number of people at the same time. Why is it so effective tool for trainers?
• Virtual training helps to keep every participant pay attention to virtual training.
• This platform allows to record the training and watch time and time again by trainees.
• A detail demonstrations can be given to teach skills (Zoom in &out).
• Flexible hours and can be conducted at any time.
Video based training- Trainers have felt that it is not possible to carry out classroom session to a wide workforce thus video based training seems to be an effective tool for them. It is the use of various training software like TalentLMS, Loop etc. which is used by the trainers to make animations, 3D images, graphics and videos to make the learners understand the new skill or knowledge.
E-learning- Knowledge exchange is one of the leading trend in education and workplace training where the exchange of ideas, information, skills etc. take place through web network. E-learning is one of such common platform where the trainers can train millions of workforce across the world about a particular skill and knowledge. Why is it preferred?
• An employee can learn the skill and acquire knowledge 24*7, 365 days in this platform where he or she is.
• It carries the benefits like personalised study material and interactive formats which enables the trainees to learn as per his/her capability. It also gives options of alternative methods.
• Collaborating is possible with e-learning where more than one trainer can teach the trainees under a single platform.
These 3 influential factors are making their mark with the outcomes it is producing across the globe thus in near future, we can expect these to replace traditional training.
Q. What are the competencies in T&D you see becoming important in near future?
The competencies are categorized into 5 categories which are as follows-
Assessing performance need
Supporting the transfer of training
Importance of each of these competencies are there in present days as well as in future but some of the competencies are going to be the deciding factors in near future. These are-
Conduct Design Analysis- It is coming under the first category of competencies. It includes-
Training will address the identified performance gap
Determining the contextual requirements of training- gathering information about learners, design constraints and technical constraints.
Subject matter research- identify and arrange the learning tools.
Conduct task analysis [Cascio, W. (2018).]
Plan for designing and developing training.
Create learning environment- This is a new trend in training and development where maximum care is given to make the environment so that learner will feel comfortable to learn. It is considered under second level of competencies. Here what comes under this-
Establish physical and virtual learning environment
Meet the social and emotional need of learners.
Establish responsibilities to ensure success
Modelling of appropriate behaviour
Tackle counterproductive behaviour
Engage learners- Earlier training was a medium to give knowledge and skill like a routine work to execute without caring whether they learnt or not. But now their involvement matters a lot and will continue in future. It is the 3rd level of competency. It includes-
Set up for contents and instructions
Involve learners in GD, brainstorming, logical analysis etc.
Encourage for Q&A of learner. [Wang, M. (2018).]
Use of differences and controversies to open up learning scope
Use of visual classroom (Webinars, Video class, seminars etc.)
Transfer of learning- It is the program that involves designing and promoting activities and materials that help learners to understand the reason why they have learnt that during training. It is the 3rd level of competencies. It includes-
• Reminder mails and feedbacks by the mentor or coach.
• Idea about additional learning tools, opportunities of practice and recognition of change in behaviour.
• Determine the technology that can be used to support transfer of learning like automated reminders, online performance tracking and links to support.
• Develop guidelines and tracking materials for self-evaluation.
Evaluate Learner’s reaction- Earlier only the work performance was measured from training and development program but today as well as in near future the importance of overall development of personnel is going to be important. This is coming under the second and third level of competency. It includes-
• Use of technology to study the reactions of learners such as online surveys and automated reporting. [Thomas, O. (2018).]
• Read of pattern and trend of learner’s reaction
• Factors that impacted learner’s reaction.
• Determine the feasible change in design of training and reactions of trainees.
The above mentioned points are the important competencies in T&D program which is going to change the conventional T&D approach today.
Q. Which do you see less important competence in T&D these days?
These can be-
1. Assessing performance-At present, HR has to collect information from various functional heads and then assessment is done. Then need or no need of training and development is identified. It takes long process. In near future, all performance and behavioural reporting will be automated and collected directly with use of technology. It is the trainer who can directly find the results and determine the need of training.
2. Identifying performance gap- It is only a one side approach where only work performance is taken. In future, the learner will also identify the gaps so that right actions will be taken to improve it. It is mostly applicable to the personality and behavioural aspects of personnel. [McLagan, P. A. (1997)]
3. Result measurement- Normally, the organization takes the productivity improvement as the indicator of positive result but in future this will be added to the development in KSA of that person overall after training and mentoring program.
Q. What are the new trends in T&D?
Blended learning- This is an approach that combines both traditional and modern learning. For ex- An organization has arranged Webinar along with classroom training for their employees. It goes with the benefits like employees can learn the contents and also revise it with such mixture. This also involves real time feedbacks. [Boyatzis, R. E. (2008).]
M-learning- For millennial professional, it is the best way to improve their KSA for organizational benefits. Today maximum no. of these population are using smartphone which is compatible of doing office work. Using this as medium the organization can share videos, graphics, images, audio files, charts, graphs etc. to the employees and they also use mobile for carrying office work in flexible hours.
Social and collaborated learning- It is basically the diversity training that is given now a days to build relationship with employees from different culture, religion, ethnicity, gender etc. The motive of such training program is to promote the collaboration of personnel with different groups to bring awareness of diversity. [Robertson, S. (2018).]
Gamification- The use of Game mechanics in the learning program is another new thing in T &D. Today the organizations are conducting various management games and programs like role playing, team building games, logical games (puzzle games, video games), mathematical games etc. to develop their logical and reasoning skills which is needed in their work.
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Cascio, W. (2018). Managing human resources. McGraw-Hill Education.
Wang, M. (2018). A Framework of Performance-Oriented Workplace e-Learning. In E-Learning in the Workplace (pp. 95-103). Springer, Cham.
Thomas, O. (2018). Training and Development. Exploring the Effectiveness of Training on Worker Performance.
McLagan, P. A. (1997). Competencies: The next generation. Training & development, 51(5), 40-48.
Boyatzis, R. E. (2008). Competencies in the 21st century. Journal of management development, 27(1), 5-12.
Robertson, S. (2018). Exploring the efficacy of training and development for liaison librarians at Deakin University, Australia. Journal of Higher Education Policy and Management, 1-14.