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Training KPI And Effective HR Management

Dec 8, 2007
The use of KPI's or key performance indicators is quite a useful concept that has become popular in strategic management. Over the past years, the practice of management has been becoming more and more based on facts and observations, and it became logical to try and define which parameters could determine performance.

Being able to have quantifiable bases with which to measure various aspects of the performance and condition of an employee, group, or company has become one of the basic principles of sound management. After identifying the various measurable quantities available, it then becomes a matter of choosing the most relevant parameters. The most important of these parameters then became known as key performance indicators (KPI).

For instance, a training KPI is the average number of training hours that each employee has undergone within a specified time period, usually a year. This parameter would be able to roughly indicate the amount of training that an employee, on average, is able to get within that time period.

By considering both the magnitude and the rate of change of this parameter, management would be able to get a clearer idea of whether their employees are receiving enough training. Conversely, if this average number is too small, or if the rate of change is negative - that is, if the number of hours show a decreasing trend - then it might be necessary to route more resources to training.

Another training KPI that might prove useful is the average training cost, per employee, over a specified time period. This cost can then be compared against the average increase in productivity, to see if the training regimen that has been implemented actually worked. For example, a high average training cost together with a low average increase in productivity would seem to point towards an ineffective training program. A lower average training cost, on the other hand, together with a high average increase in productivity would mean that the training program implemented was a cost-effective one.

It can be seen from these examples, then, that considering training KPI's individually would not always yield accurate evaluations. This is because many of these parameters are actually interrelated, and must be considered together to represent a meaningful way of measuring performance.

It is still important, of course, to be able to identify what these most important training KPI's are, to be able to monitor all of them effectively. Once data has been gathered according to these known key performance indicators, then the data can be evaluated, in light of the relationships between these KPI's. A proper selection of KPI's would help to limit the data to be analyzed to those data that would really be relevant.

In today's world, organizations are more often than not forced to adapt to changing conditions and a dynamic marketplace. This places more importance on being able to evaluate and implement effective training programs. With the use of training KPI's, managers would be able to judge better and craft good training programs for the betterment of their organization.
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