Evaluating Training Programs: The Four Levels

The spheres of management and human resources are primarily characterized by the need for constant improvement and development, as striving for better results makes businesses remain relevant in the market. Hence, to ensure the accessibility of improvement and to boost one’s skills, researchers in the field of human resources have elaborated a model of training programs as means of quality education within a business unit. According to scholarly research, the implementation of training programs tends to benefit both employers and employees. However, in order for the training program to be successful, HR managers and organizations have to create a holistic approach to creating a quality program worth the investment and employees’ time.

To achieve this goal, modern management analysts have defined a variety of training program creation models. The two most common frameworks for program creation are known as Kirkpatrick and Kirkpatrick’s Ten-Step Process Model and the ADDIE model. In order to understand the convergent and divergent features of these models, it is necessary to briefly analyze each of them. Hence, the Ten-Step Process presupposes outlining ten major details that are to be considered when planning and implementing a training program.

These steps include analyzing the environment and the employees’ needs, identifying the central subject of training, defining the logistics of the potential program, and monitoring and evaluating the implemented training. Thus, the following framework is primarily focused on the detailed examination of the program’s lifecycle, making sure that the training outcome is nothing but positive.

When speaking of the ADDIE model, the primary approach to the planning and implementation process is somewhat similar to the aforementioned framework. Thus, the very acronym ADDIE stands for Analysis, Design, Development, Implementation, and Evaluation. The emphasis in this model is placed on the process of reflecting the relevant data and direct needs of the employees. Hence, the ADDIE model is created as a framework to achieve practically immediate feedback in terms of the employees’ expectations from training.

Considering both these approaches, it would be safe to assume that they are seemingly similar in their perception of training program planning and implementation. However, when taking a closer look at the issue, one may notice that the latter model is more applicable to the reality of 21st-century business conduction due to the agility of the framework. Today’s working environment is overwhelmed with skills and competencies that are to be acquired by workers in order to stay productive and beneficial for the company.

When addressing the Ten-Step Process, the amount of time spent on planning may eventually make a certain skill irrelevant in terms of training, whereas the ADDIE model is focused on constant feedback from the employees. Moreover, the ADDIE model is more adjusted to the digital HR environment, which means that the approach can be implemented in management software systems such as Trello. On the contrary, the Ten-Step Process is rather focused on collecting data in offline settings through communication with every employee. Thus, it may be concluded that while both the Ten-Step and ADDIE models have much in common, the latter approach is considered more relevant in terms of modern management patterns.

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