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The effects of current staff training practices used by Banks in the UK on their performance." Small businesses in the UK: are they busy to train their employees? Do they consider training as an important element; are they applying sufficient training methods used in the literature? or they are neglecting it as a strategic issue? Reasons for that?
1.0 PROVISIONAL TITLE
To assess the impact on training and development on organizational performance and the importance organizations attribute to training.
Training is the consistent and effective transfer of appropriate behaviour which leads to the achievement of predetermined and specified outcomes (Shipper, 2005). It is a process of learning a sequence of programmed behaviour and an application of knowledge (Hopp, 2004). The term development can be defined as “the nature and direction of change taking place among personnel through educational and training process. Training is a short term process utilizing systematic and organized procedures by which non-managerial learn technical knowledge and skill for specific purpose (Dijk, 2006). It refers only to instruction in technical and managerial operations while development refers to philosophical and theoretical educational concept. Every organization needs to have well trained people and in order to increase job performance, it is necessary to raise the skill level and increase the versatility and adoptability of employees. In a rapidly changing society, employee training and development is an activity that is desirable as it arms the organization with a knowledge workforce. It gives people an awareness of the rules and procedure to guide their behaviour and attempts to improve their performance on the job or prepare them for an intended job (Earley, 2004). Development covers not only those activities which improve job performance but also those which bring about growth of the personality. It helps individuals in the progress towards maturity and actualization of their potential capacities so that they become good employees. The objective of training and development is to seek a relatively permanent change in an individual to improve his or her ability to perform on the job (Taylor, 2005).
Determining training needs
Theorists like (Cummings, 2003) have suggested three fold approaches in determining the training needs. The approach involves organizational analysis, operational analysis and man analysis. Organizational analysis determines the area/ department where training requirements are paramount and extremely essential from the organizational point of view. Operational analysis determines the correct form of training in terms of what an employee must do to perform a task job or assignment in an effective way. Man Analysis determines what skills, knowledge or attitude an individual employee must develop to perform the tasks which constitute the job in the organization.
Training is believed to increase productivity, efficiency and effectiveness. It can help employees increase their level of performance which impacts productivity positively and increases profitability. It also helps new employees to understand the most efficient and effective way of performing the job as better informed workers are less likely to make operational mistakes. Training also has an impact on work quality. Quality, in this instance, may refer to the company's product or service or to the intangible organizational employment atmosphere. Cummings & Jones (2003) state that organizations that have a good internal educational programme have to make less drastic man power changes. Even when the need arise for man power changes, they can be staffed from internal sources if a company initiates and maintain an adequate instructional programme for the both its non-supervisory staff and managerial employees. Taylor et al., (2005) highlight that an endless chain of positive reaction results from a well planned training programme which impacts on production and product quality. This may also result in the increment of financial incentives. Proper training can also help prevent industrial accidents. Managerial mental state also improves if supervisors know that they can better themselves through company designed development programmes. They also foster the initiatives and creativity of employees and help prevent manpower obsolesce which may be due to age, temperament (or) motivation (or) inability to adapt to technical changes (Early & Petersen, 2004).
The impact of training
Training is an integral part of the whole management programme, with all its many activities functionally inter-related. The need for training is important so that new and changed techniques may be taken advantage of and improvement affected in the old method. Apart from all the other benefits, employees on a personal basis gain individually from their exposure to educational experiences as well. Training is important to employees in that it makes employees more effective and productive. It enables them to increase ‘market value' earning power and job security and moulds employees attitudes to help them to achieve a better coordination within the company and a greater loyalty to it (Toegel & Conger, 2003). It also heightens staff morale and helps reduce dissatisfaction, complaints etc. Further, trained employees are also believed to make a better and economical use of material and equipments which reduces wastage (Shipper et al.,2005). Within the management circles, training is accepted as problem solving device. It enables the management to resolve sources of friction arising from parochialism (Hopp& Oyen, 2004). Other management benefits, is that higher standards of quality are achieved.
Every training programme should have certain objectives because the design of the programme depends on the objectives. One of the general training objectives is to prepare the employees and the organization as a whole for any change management efforts. The objective should be to be proactive to the changing environment rather than being reactive. Other objectives can be linked to imparting basic knowledge, skills to the new employees, which they need for better performance of a particular job. One of the other purposes of training is also to prepare employees for higher level job and to prepare them to occupy more responsible position. Training can also be provided to develop the senior managers by providing with opportunities for and interchange of experience within and outside with a view to correcting the narrowness of outlook that may arise from over specialization (Hopp & Oyen, 2004). It can also be given in times of ‘lows' to improve the morale, sense of responsibilities cooperation among the employees.
3.0AIMS AND OBJECTIVES
Purpose of the study:
Although training and development is considered crucial to the success of organizations, little attention has been paid to it. The research tries to assess why training and development receives little attention from most organizations. It will also try to determine the role which training and development can play in an organizations success.
To assess the effectiveness of the training and development systems and the importance attributed to them.
- To analyze the importance of training and development within the organizational context.
- To assess the attitude of employees towards training and development functions
- To demonstrate organizational willingness to train and develop their employees
- To determine the effectiveness of the training needs assessment system and to assess the effectiveness of the evaluation system
- To estimate the extent of top line management involvement in the implementation of the training system.
- To recommend ways to improve implementation of training and development functions within organizations
In order to approach the above mentioned research objectives, the study is taking into account both qualitative and quantitative research strategies which is often necessary for ‘triangulation' - meaning ‘getting a fix from two or more places' (Green et al; 2002, pg 45, sited in Cresswell, 2003). Triangulation refers to the use of different data collection methods within one study in order to ensure that the data are telling you what you think they are telling you. (Saunders et al, 2006) The triangulation approach strives to capture a more complete, holistic, and contextual portrayal of the phenomena under study, and is intended to neutralize bias in any one approach applied (Robson; 2002, pg 23)
According to Bonoma (cited in Zikmund, 2000; Lewin & Johnston, 2002), researchers can pursue high levels of data validity and generalizability by adopting triangulation strategies which provide replication and/or corroboration of findings across methods (i.e. experiments, surveys, case studies). It has further been suggested that the integration of both research strategies within a single project opens up enormous opportunities for mutual advantage, since inherent weaknesses of one approach can be overcome only by using other methods (Yin ; 2003, pg 33).
The Research Approach is a combination of deductive and inductive approach. Deductive, because the existing concept of training and evaluation and its impact on organizational development is first tested using data and inductive because the data collected is analyzed to give new dimensions to the concept of training evaluation.
A case study (Orchid Chemicals & Pharmaceuticals) Strategy will be taken as it involves an empirical investigation of training evaluation methods. Quantitative and qualitative research will be applied, both using primary and secondary information that will be gathered and assembled specifically for this study. Qualitative secondary information from a variety of sources can be gathered like Case Studies, Brochures, Web page , Reference books , Journals , Online journals, Newspaper and Magazine Articles , Taped interviews , Business news channel views , Research Agency (e.g Mintel) databases . Primary data will be collected using employee surveys. For this purpose, a convenience sample of Orchid Chemicals & Pharmaceuticals employees will be surveyed. In order to reduce possible biases and ensure data reliability, a more representative sample of the overall employee population will be taken. Also, there will be a high degree of structure to the interviewing to reduce observer error. Focus groups will also be conducted with Orchid Chemicals & Pharmaceuticals staff to assess the importance of training and development and the evaluation procedures.
There are two objectives of the focus groups/surveys; one general and one specific.
- The general objective is to obtain an overview of the employee's views on key aspects of training and development.
- The specific objective is to obtain information on training and development approach and results for the specific case cited.
The findings can serve two purposes; one comparative and one prescriptive.
- The comparative objective is to compare and contrast the findings with existing literature.
- The prescriptive objective is to draw out key elements of training and development as understood by the respondents.
Since the study examines the case of OCPL only, the results cannot be generalized. Future research should seek to replicate the study onto other organizations in order to be able to get a broader understanding of the effects of training and development. Also, this study only examines the effects of training and development in terms of its marketplace impact; it does not examine the effects in terms of the financial impact of the programme. The econometrics of training and development doesn't form a part of the research.