In Module 2, you provided your recommendations based on information from the needs analysis that Fred Knott, the training consultant, performed at BINZ, Inc. Now it is time to revisit those training issues as you begin to develop a training session for EITHER the sales OR customer service department.
Based on your recommendations for training from your last assignment, design a training plan for BINZ, Inc. Be sure to address overall training design as well as a preliminary lesson plan.
Do not focus on specific training activities for this project, but do address:
•Goals & learning objectives
•Target audience(s) and number of participants
•Length of training
•Prerequisites (including any materials to be distributed before training)
•Location and facility arrangements
The tables on pp. 207-209 may be a useful guideline for this project, though you do not have to follow this specific format. Expect to take approximately 2-3 pages (double-spaced, 12-point font) to complete this assignment. Your work will be graded on completeness, clarity, originality, interest, grammar, spelling, and punctuation (see the HRA340 Written Assignment Grading Rubric in Doc Sharing for more information).
Tables from pp. 207-209
TABLE 5.4: Design Document Template
Source: Based on G. Piskurich, Rapid Instructional Design (San Francisco: Pfeiffer, 2006).
The level of detail in the design document can vary. Scope of project includes the goals, outcomes, or achievement expectations for trainees; a description of the trainees; a description of how long it will take to develop the course and the checkpoints or tasks that need to be completed as the course is developed; and the length of the course. The length of a course is determined by considering trainees’ abilities and their availability for training, the resources needed for training, whether the course is part of a larger curriculum or is a stand-alone course, and the need to develop modules in order to provide an opportunity for trainees to practice concepts and skills to avoid being overwhelmed.
Delivery includes what the course will cover, how it will be delivered (e.g., face-to-face or online), an estimate of the training time, and the identification of any special conditions or issues that may affect the course (e.g., problems getting equipment for video role plays and providing feedback).
Objectives refer to the course or program objectives. Those are broader summary statements of the purpose of the program.
Resources refers to the materials—cases, DVDs, videos, models, process maps, podcasts, lesson plans, or guides for use by the facilitator or participants—that need to be purchased or developed for the course. Who is involved includes trainers, program designers, and individuals who will be involved in the design, delivery, and evaluation of the program. The topical outline includes a brief outline of the topics that will be covered in the program. Administration and evaluation refers to who will be in charge of course scheduling, how trainees will enroll, how the course will be evaluated, and who will review and update the course. Links to other programs refers to any other needs, such as a train-the-trainer program or manager introduction or kickoff for the program. Table 5.5 shows a simple design document for the performance appraisal review course designed to increase managers’ effectiveness in conducting performance appraisal reviews. Performance appraisal review sessions are meetings between a manager and employee, during which the strengths and weaknesses of the employee’s performance are discussed and improvement goals agreed upon.
TABLE 5.5: Design Document
Course or Lesson Plan
Lesson plans are typically more detailed than the design document. They include the specific steps involved in the lesson, instructor and trainee activities, and the time allocated to each topic included in the lesson.
Lesson plans can be designed for programs lasting a day, a week, or several hours. If training takes place over several days, a separate lesson plan is prepared for each day.
The detailed lesson plan translated the content and sequence of training activities into a guide that is used by the trainer to help deliver the training. That is, lesson plans include the sequence of activities that will be conducted in the training session and identify the administrative details. Table 5.6 shows a lesson plan. The lesson plan provides a table of contents for the training activity, which helps to ensure that training activities are consistent regardless of the trainer. Lesson plans also help ensure that both the trainee and the trainer are aware of the course and program objectives. Most training departments have written lesson plans that are stored in notebooks or in an electronic database. Because lesson plans are documented, they can be shared with customers of the training department (i.e., managers who pay for training services) to provide them with detailed information regarding program activities and objectives.
TABLE 5.6: Sample of a Detailed Lesson Plan
Table 5.7 shows the features of an effective lesson plan. The lesson plan includes the learning objectives, topics to be covered, target audience, time of session, lesson outline, the activity involved, any required preparation or prerequisites, how learning will be evaluated, and steps to ensure transfer of training.28
TABLE 5.7: Features of an Effective Lesson Plan
Sources: Based on R. Vaughn, The Professional Trainer (Euclid, OH: Williams Custom Publishing, 2000); R. F. Mager, Making Instruction Work, 2d ed. (Atlanta, GA: Center for Effective Performance, 1997); L. Nadler and Z. Nadler, Designing Training Programs, 2d ed. (Houston, TX: Gulf Publishing, 1992); Big Dog’s Human Resource Development website, www.nwlink.com/donclark/hrd.html. (Noe 206-210)
Noe, Raymond. Employee Training and Development, 6th Edition. McGraw-Hill Learning Solutions, 2012-10-31. VitalBook file.
The citation provided is a guideline. Please check each citation for accuracy before use.
Training Project 1 turned in 7/13/2015
Training Project 2 must be a continuation of project 1.
The first issue is that the sales employees do not have adequate income during the beginning of their careers. This should be rectified by making their remuneration a mix of fixed salary and commissions. The fixed salary should be adequate to retain the sales employees, even if the sales person does not earn commissions. This solution is not training based. This decision has been made to ensure that sales employees have adequate income in the beginning of their career.
The second issue is that Neil had declined to accept the post of a Sales Manager. This position should be filled by an experienced sales manager. He will provide leadership to the team of sales employees. He will also exercise control over the activities, efforts, and training of the sales employees. He will ask the sales employees for their weekly and monthly plans and monitor their activities so that they efficiently use their time. Further, he will identify the areas where the sales employees require training and then arrange for training in those areas. This solution is also not training based. This decision has been made to provide leadership and administrative support to sales employees.
The third issue is that training should be provided to sales employees whenever a new product is launched. This training should focus not only on the technical aspects of the product but should also focus on developing strategies for selling the product. This solution is training based. After that, weekly meetings of the sales employees should be held where they discuss the tactics and strategies that they have used to sell new products as well as existing products. This decision has been made to increase the efficiency of selling new and existing products. This solution also improves communication among employees.
The fourth issue is that new sales persons take a long time to settle down and build sales. The solution is that when a new sales employee joins the company, he should be given a detailed training in developing leads, persuading the customer, and closing sales. In addition, he should be given training in each of the existing products of the company. He should know all technical details of each product he has to sell. Only after he successfully completes two tests, one in selling techniques and the other in the technical aspects of the product should he be placed on the job. I have taken this decision because an ill-informed sales employee can sully the reputation of the company with the customers. This is a training based solution.
It is not necessary to have a team of trainers whenever a sales employee joins the company. The training module and the exam can be recorded and administered on a computer. The tests can be administered on a computer by the manager. Only if the manager is satisfied with the performance of the employee should he clear the sales employee for the real job.
There should be a formal performance evaluation for the sales employees in which not merely the sales but also other criteria should be used for evaluating the employee. For example, the regularity and transparency with which he submits reports to the manager, the market development activities he performs, or the training the person provides to other sales persons should also be considered for evaluating the performance of the employee. An honest and equitable performance evaluation will go a long way in retaining the employees. The results of the performance evaluation should be linked to rewards, promotion, and commissions. This solution is not training based. This decision has been made to increase the retention of the sales employees.
Solution 1 will increase overall salary costs by 5%, there will be no additional person hours used for changing the mix of salary, and it is convenient to administer. Solution 2 will increase salary costs by $55,000 per year; it will improve the usage of person hours available, and is moderately convenient. A search for a sales manager has to be made. Solution 3 will increase training costs by $15,000 per year, the person hour use will be three hours per product introduction, and the administering of technical and behavioral training will be moderately inconvenient. Solution 4 has a training cost of $6,000 per employee, the person hour use for the training is seven working days, and it is moderately convenient because the training has to be provided in-house. Solution 5 has an administration cost of $5,000 per year, the person hour use will be four hours for every supervisor-employee combination, and a performance evaluation system is convenient to administer.