Five Best Practices For Building A Strong Workforce

Posted By: John Hindman, Director of Learning and Performance Improvement, Tooling U-SME on May 17, 2016



Last year, the average training investment per employee across all industries was $1,2291. That sounds promising, right? When we isolate the industry to manufacturing, however, that number falls to just $745.20 per employee.

This lack of commitment to workforce development is surprising, since we know that world-class companies are outperforming others in large part because they manage and train their workforces differently.

For companies that recognize the urgency but don’t know how to improve their learning and development process, we created a list of five best practices for building a high-performance workforce.

Here we provide a top-end summary. For a more in-depth look, we encourage you to download the whole document for free.

Five Best Practices for Building a High-performance Workforce

1. Identify the business objectives. A successful training and development program must have the buy-in of senior management. The best way to do this is to demonstrate learning’s impact on the business. How does your training program tie to the bottom line?

2. Define performance-based competency models. Having a system in place to codify knowledge and skills required for a specific job role is critical to ensure individuals are successful in their roles. Today, more employers are using competency modeling to provide a structured way of looking at job progression, job assessment and workforce planning.

3. Align learning solutions to develop knowledge and skills. A well-defined competency framework and aligned learning plan will eliminate unnecessary or redundant training, and maximize training time to develop only the knowledge and skills a particular employee needs.

4. Structure your on-the-job training (OJT) program. Performance-based training programs should require the use of standardized OJT tools and techniques to ensure consistent delivery of training. Companies should also ensure they “train the trainers,” investing in developing their OJT mentors and instructors with competencies in adult learning, mentoring and the delivery of their OJT sessions.

5. Develop and execute a measurable impact study. At the start of program design, a company should document goals related to production, quality, innovation and employee retention. Later, the team can refer back and see how the program measured up.

Download the full report for free here or call 866.706.8665 if we can help you get started.


1. 2015 State of the Industry. (ATD, 2015)

Tags: "best practices", competencies, "competency models", learning, manufacturing, OJT, "on-the-job training", training, "workforce development"