Training has undergone many changes in the last 20 years. For decades, it wasn’t unusual for employees to travel to another city, stay in a hotel, attend two or three days of training, and then returned home. Employers hoped that they had learned something that would be beneficial to their job along with having a good time while they were away. You still see that model in conferences and trade shows. Today’s conferences like trainings of yesteryear, tend to be held in somewhat exotic locations with other non-training related activities close at hand. Places like Orlando, Las Vegas, San Diego have long been centers for training, trade shows and conferences. I still remember conversations while I was still working for a company about choosing the best place to go to attend training. The conversation rarely was about cost or accommodations but mostly about other activities available at different sites.
How much cyber security training are you doing? Is it even on your radar? Hardly a month goes by now that we don’t see something in the news about another company being hacked. And if you believe what the experts say, what we hear about a fraction of what’s actually going on. So I ask again, “How much cyber security training are you doing?”
There are many threats businesses face. Malware, phishing attacks, SQL injection. These are just some of the threats you need to be aware of. But cyber security experts will tell you that the greatest threat to your business lies between the chair and the keyboard – your people. The only way to reduce that threat is to make sure your staff has been trained in what to look out for and what to totally avoid when working in the digital world.
Learning Management Systems have been around for years. They have taken different forms depending upon the hero that they were developed in. When they were first introduced, educators felt that they may be the answer to individualized education. However, as technology has advanced many people feel that the learning management system is no longer relevant. I think however that learning management systems not only are relevant, but will be here for many years to come.
20 years ago, the average person had ever heard of the tablet. 30 years ago, cell phones were just a dream. 40 years ago, personal computers were the fantasy of only a few. Each of those devices not only is with us today. What is shaping the society that we live in. Learning management systems have the potential to do the same.
Colleges have been using learning management systems to promote both online education and blended learning for many years. Those systems may or may not be what they were 5 or 10 or 15 years ago, Continue reading
As a technologist, it can be hard to integrate new technology into the workplace. Most people are resistant to change, so getting people to accept something new can be even harder than figuring out how to install the hardware or software. There are three ways that you can help a new technology be integrated and accepted into your organization. They are:
- Explain the benefits
- Have a core group
- Reduce the impact.
Explain the Benefits
When you’re considering bringing a new technology into your organization, it is extremely important for you to explain the benefits initial to management and later to the staff. As a technologist, you will quickly see what those benefits are and how it will fit into your organization. But management’s focus is elsewhere and so they won’t necessarily see the benefits as quickly as you. The benefits to explain will probably include how the technology will save time and reduce long-term cost.
This is the final post of this series and in it I thought I would go back a summarize the main points – basically giving you a check list for developing your training program and then give a framework for developing your program and the individual trainings in a single format.
- Building Your Training Program was an overview of the series with teasers about each section.
- Program Design was a two-part post that covered goals, resources, staff, and different formats for training.
- Identify Needs covered and reviewed how to run a needs assessment and review the results.
- Deciding on a Training Model gave information about three different training models, their strengths and weaknesses and what you should look for when choosing a training model for your organization.
- Evaluating Training gave some suggestions about evaluating your training program for improvement and future revisions.
The following is a skeletal outline you might consider using in your organization to develop your overall program and/or an individual class.
Name of Training Program / Subject
While your training program may not be looking for people to sign up because it will be required, you might as well try to instill some excitement in participants from the get go. To help with this give your program a name that is something compelling; something that will gain people’s interest and gets them excited (even if the training is required).
Training Need Justification
This is where you will provide the data from your needs assessment, the request from a supervisor, or the requirement that may have come from corporate or a governmental agency. It gives the reason why your company should invest the time and money in training.
Who in your organization will this training be developed for? Be as specific as possible by department, job duties or any other descriptor that applies.
Learning Objectives / Outcomes / Goals
Whatever term you use for this part of a plan this section should be about what the participants will be about to do after the training. This may also include the ROI (Return On Investment) on this training that the bean counters will look at to justify the money spent on your program generally or this specific training.
These are the models we talked about in post 5 about Deciding on a Training Model. Remember that Deciding on a Training Model gave information about the abstract versions and you will need to fill in the details for explanation – non-training professionals probably won’t have any idea what is included in the Analysis Stage of a training program or when it should happen.
Methodology / Format
This section will be how the content will be delivered – face-to-face, classroom, mentorship, just-in-time training delivered while participants are at their workstation. These choices will be dependent largely on the instructional design, budget, and the goals/objectives/outcomes. Take some time to plan and develop this section because you may be stuck t\with what you say here for a while.
Duration, Time, and Dates
If you are preparing an outline for a specific program, you will probably under estimate the time required to develop the content for a new training program and the time to process the evaluation data. Be sure to include as much time as you can for problems that will crop up as you work through your program.
While it is nice to have the best of everything to deliver your training, it probably isn’t realistic to expect that to happen. When developing your budget for a training department, try to spread the costs out over several projects so that the ROI on any single project does fall too dramatically. Watch how many one-use consumables you plan to buy and consider reusable materials. For example, perhaps you could buy a larger three ring binder and have participants add to the same blinder over several different programs instead of buying a different binder for each class. That way the cost has been spread out and a positive ROI is easier to reach.
Take a Ways:
These are things that we have learned in developing training over the last 20 years for a variety of participants and organizations. No two programs are identical so shape this as needed to fir your organization.
If you have anything other insights, please don’t hesitate to join in the conversation.