Evaluating training and development is an activity that most people do after the training has been delivered. However, evaluation  starts at the training needs analysis stage. What will we see if this training is going to add value to the organisation is something both learning designers and purchasers of training need to know so that they can select programmes with relevant content and methods.


Evaluation is not the final phase you should think about your evaluation plan early in the training design process. Work with training developers and other stakeholders to identify:

  • the evaluation purpose,
  • the evaluation questions,
  • and the data collection methods.

Take a look at our courses and resources related to evaluating training and development

Little Value from Bigwigs and Stinking Thinking

A big job had presented itself at training towers. The bigwigs had attended a continuous improvement seminar where they had been publicly embarrassed by the ring masters for their stinking thinking. The big wigs arrived at training towers and the gnomes were summoned. During a verbal thrashing the gnomes were told to put out to tender a management development programme. I’ve just finished writing a proposal for a management development programme. Provided with a list of fluffy objectives that could only have been written by an inebriated gnome with a very low threshold for success. These managers [...]

Training Twaddle About Evaluation

At the quarterly management meeting heads of department were presenting progress reports. Head of distribution had just finished sharing his news on the goods lost in transit and damaged goods issues. He was applauded for the significant  impact of these initiatives in the reduction in customer complaints and the decrease in goods being written off, demonstrating some very impressive financial gains.     The next presentation was from Training and Development, known for their slick and impressive presentations this was no exception, graphs and charts displayed data related to numbers of people attending training courses, there was a wonderful selection [...]

Memory Understanding and Doing

Memory Understanding and Doing – MUD just one of the essential processes we use when designing learning, it helps to ensure learners achieve a variety of learning goals and are able to assimilate with existing knowledge, accommodate new knowledge and encode or write what they know to long term memory to enable application when that time arrives. Learning designers use a range of models to guide our approach from Gagne’s Nine Events of Instruction to the systems oriented model of Smith and Ragan. It is this solid foundation knowledge of theory, models, and design principles that provides a designer with the [...]

Employee Training and Fatally Flawed Thinking

Employee training is about change and the sad truth is that many companies go about initiating that change in entirely the wrong way. Training is effective as the LAST step to personal and organizational change but it is rarely an effective FIRST step….Why? Often manager’s use training as an alternative and easy approach to the continuous hard work that employee development demands. Training requires very little time; it can provide a quick fix, and a great way to appear to be addressing a change issue. Bundle them off to some training course and then you can put a tick in [...]

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