Evaluating Your Training Plan


ADT’s recently published 2017 State of the Industry Report shows organizations have increased their investments in training, both in terms of money and time spent training. Does this ring true for your organization? If you remember just one thing from this article, make it this: Your competitors are investing heavily in training their workforce, so unless you want them to eat your lunch, you better be investing in training your people too.

The State of the Industry

This was the fourth year in a row these figures increased, with 2016 spending up to $1,273 per employee, up from $1,252 the year before. Industry-wide, organizations invested just over $90 billion in training, up 32.5% from prior year spending. These increases continue an upward trend in spending for the fifth year in a row, pointing to organizations continuing to value training very highly. The best indicators of how businesses prioritize things are their spending and what gets on their calendar, and it’s clear organizations are making training a priority.

The time investment per employee in 2016 was up 1.8% at 34.1 hours per employee, a little more than four full work days of training. Employees are increasingly seeing training as more important as the realize how quickly workplace environments and necessary skills change. Whether they are training for skill acquisition, skill enhancement, or simple to get continuing education credits for some certification they hold, people are taking more time than ever out of their schedules to train.

What do these figures mean for you? Simply put, you may want to ask yourself a simple question, “Are we investing in training our people like your competitors are?” If not, you may be losing ground to the competition.

Despite Tech Improvements, Face-to-Face Delivery Dominates

Webinar platform vendors seem to be coming out of the woodwork and existing players keep tweaking their offerings to keep the competition from stealing their market share. But, with all the technology improvements that come at breakneck speed, face-to-face training increased as a percentage of total training time to 51.16%. That’s right, despite its lower cost, webinars haven’t outpaced in-person training.​​​​​​​ If you’re a training and development professional, that’s probably no surprise because face-to-face training has many advantages that other delivery methods lack. But, focusing on delivery method would be missing the point here, which is…wait for it…training continues to be a very high priority for many organizations and especially so for best-in-class organizations.

What’s Your Plan?

Training spending is up and people are spending more time on it, too, but what are YOU doing about training yourself and your people? If you’re in charge of putting together training events or material, what have you done about implementing whatever training plan you made before your budget was locked down at the end of last year? There are a seemingly endless variety of options out there to satisfy your training needs. If you’re like one of the many organizations who collectively spent $7.5 billion last year in outside training products and services, you have a lot to evaluate to lock down what training you’ll have on your calendar.

You probably have a few questions to answer before you can finalize all of the training you want to get do. Who will I get to deliver the training? What topics do I want on my training agenda? In person or webinar? And the list goes on.

Now is the time to answer these questions and get your training planned and booked. Then, you can look forward to implementation and seeing your training pay big dividends.

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