Evaluation of training in a small company - how to organize it?

Service Business

Small businesses do not always invest in training. Their organization is associated with incurring expenses that can be spent on a more intensive promotion of the services provided or the purchase of modern office equipment. Entrepreneurs are aware of the need to improve the professional qualifications of employed people. Their reluctance to organize courses also results from the fear that the money spent will not bring tangible results. Evaluating training in a small business is essential. How to conduct it?

Evaluation of external training in a small company

Small businesses sometimes do not carry out in-house training. HR departments, if they exist at all, employ specialists in accounting and human resources, i.e. calculating wages, preparing contracts, etc. Small companies usually outsource a specific course to an external entity that conducts consulting activities or specializes in the organization of a specific type of training courses .

Evaluation of training in a small company can be carried out in two ways:

  • an external entity verifies the effects of the organized course,

  • the company owner independently checks the acquired knowledge and skills of employees who participated in the meetings.

Each of the above two small business training evaluation solutions has its advantages and disadvantages. First of all, entrusting the verification of the effects of the conducted course to an external entity does not require the involvement of the owner of the company. He receives a ready report, through which he can find out whether his employees have increased their level of knowledge and skills. However, it should be remembered that an external entity may "stretch" the results to encourage the entrepreneur to conclude a contract for further training.

On the other hand, conducting the evaluation of training in a small company on its own requires a lot of commitment from the owner of the company. It will be necessary to prepare questionnaires, knowledge tests and skill assessment sheets. The mere observation of employees will also take a long time. However, thanks to this, the entrepreneur can notice whether the training has increased the professional qualifications of the employed employees.

Evaluation of training in a small company - preparation of materials

If the entrepreneur decides to independently evaluate the training in his small company, he will have to prepare the necessary materials that will be used to evaluate the effects of the course. The first time is the hardest - all sheets, questionnaires and documents need to be prepared from scratch. Evaluation of training in a small company, carried out for the second, third or tenth time, enables the use of previously created materials (of course, some modifications in the documentation should be made depending on the type of training).

Materials can be prepared with the support of an expert, e.g. a person working in a consulting company, or use academic textbooks or internet sources. It is also worth thinking about cooperation with students who are preparing their master's theses. Often these young people are looking for a company that would be used as a research object. You can ask the student to create training evaluation materials in a small company and write his / her thesis on this topic.

Evaluation of training in a small company - what to do with the results?

After the training has been assessed, the results obtained should be analyzed. If there has been an increase in the professional competences of employees, the entrepreneur will certainly be pleased with this fact and will reflect on the subject of the next courses. It is a bit worse when the organized meetings did not bring the expected results. The employer must consider whether:

  • an external entity has carried out the training incorrectly,

  • the level of knowledge transferred was too high for employees to assimilate,

  • training needs have been incorrectly identified,

  • employees did not pay attention to the organized meetings or were not interested in a given topic,

  • employed people do not want to use the acquired knowledge in practice.

Answers to the above questions may appear in the questionnaires that should be completed by training participants. Employees themselves will indicate the lack of interest in a given topic, too high or too low level of the knowledge provided. Certainly, the surveys will also comment on whether the person conducting the training was properly prepared for it.

Depending on the cause that influenced the results of the evaluation of training in a small company, a different solution should be applied. If the fault lies with an external entity, it is not worth continuing cooperation with it.