Corporate Trainers Pressed to Limit Time Off Job

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<p><strong>Boston &mdash; April 3</strong><br />Corporate trainers are being pressed to minimize employee time off the job, and as a result, development professionals report reduced classroom hours, more training done on the job and greater reliance on e-learning, according to findings of a survey of 2,000 human resources and training and development executives by Novations Group, a global consulting firm based in Boston. <br /><br />The study reflects growing demand for accountability, said Novations Senior Vice President Rebecca Hefter.&nbsp; </p><p>&ldquo;Corporate training always evolves and adapts and right now, the challenge is to justify what we do in terms of quantifiable outcomes and contribution to the bottom line,&quot; Hefter said. &quot;Nevertheless, this isn&rsquo;t a matter of senior management not valuing leadership or employee development.&nbsp; </p><p>&quot;In fact, our study suggests the investment in training continues to rise.&nbsp; But the trend is away from the classroom and a greater effort to tie learning to day-to-day challenges in the workplace.&rdquo;<br /><br />In response to the question, &quot;Are you experiencing any of the following trends within your organization?&quot; this is what respondents had to say: <br />&nbsp;</p><ul><li>More online/e-learning: <strong>57 percent </strong></li><li>Greater effort to quantify results of training/development:<strong> 42 percent </strong></li><li>Increased on-the-job training: <strong>41 percent </strong></li><li>Personal coaching: <strong>35 percent</strong></li><li>Fewer classroom hours/more condensed classroom time: <strong>30 percent </strong></li><li>Outsourcing of trainers/facilitation resources: <strong>25 percent</strong></li><li>More podcasting: <strong>10 percent</strong></li></ul><p>To limit employee time off the job, trainers are integrating classroom learning with follow-up methods such as conference calls and net meetings, Hefter said.&nbsp; </p><p>&ldquo;We want to extend the learning experience beyond the classroom, so we&rsquo;re using learning logs, job aids, action plans and even printed reminders,&rdquo; she said.<br /><br />Although instructor-led training is still the No. 1 method, others seem to be gaining ground.<br /><br />In response to the question, &quot;With respect to training delivery methods, which of the following will your organization utilize in the year ahead?&quot; this is what respondents had to say: <br />&nbsp;</p><ul><li>Classroom training (instructor-led): <strong>87 percent </strong></li><li>On-the-job (OTJ) training: <strong>79 percent</strong></li><li>Seminars/webinars: <strong>78 percent</strong></li><li>Coaching/mentoring: <strong>66 percent </strong></li><li>e-learning/self-paced study: <strong>64 percent</strong></li><li>University programs: <strong>33 percent </strong></li><li>Simulations: <strong>22 percent</strong></li></ul><p>At the same time, trainers are seeking to bring the workplace into the classroom, Hefter said.&nbsp;&nbsp; </p><p>&ldquo;Companies want training that&rsquo;s relevant and with exercises that closely simulate the way work is conducted on the job,&quot; she said. &quot;Case studies where teams solve real work problems are very popular.&rdquo;<br /><br />The Novations Group Internet survey of 2,046 senior HR and development executives was completed in December 2006 by Equation Research.</p>

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