tuX Polling #1: Manufacturers Need Help With Formalizing Training

Posted By: Jeannine Kunz, Vice President, Tooling U-SME on July 13, 2017

Back in May, we gathered manufacturers together from across the country at tuX, our annual event focused on building a high-performance workforce.

To get a pulse on industry workforce trends, we polled attendees onsite. We’d like to share some of those insights in a two-part series.

Today’s topic is around formalized, standardized training and development programs and measuring their return-on-investment (ROI).

First, let’s define what we mean by this. Often, training in the manufacturing industry is informal. For instance, when it came to on-the-job training (OJT), a new employee might shadow a more experienced colleague for a few weeks, absorbing whatever the mentor shares. Depending on the “instructor,” this could go well…or not.

With this approach, there is no consistency from employee to employee. There is no way to assess existing skills and knowledge or measure development as employees grow in their roles. Standardized work programs on the other hand include worker qualification standards, progression models, competencies, Train-the-Trainer programs, and other measurable tools.

It is clear manufacturers need help in this area. Attendees indicated that many are struggling to formalize, standardize, and measure the effectiveness of training programs.

For instance, when it comes to measuring effectiveness of training programs, poll respondents indicated that their companies are not effectively measuring ROI but are instead relying on informal means for evaluating training effectiveness.

This is a missed opportunity. World-class manufacturers know an investment in human capital is critical for achieving and sustaining a competitive advantage. Yet many manufacturers relegate training and development to a minor expense line in the annual budget.

Why? Because without a formalized training program directly tied to the bottom line, it is impossible to show ROI.

When training programs are an integral part of a strategic plan from the beginning and are attached to overall fiscal goals, training departments can demonstrate the value and necessity of focusing on people to ensure the overall success of an organization.

Let us know how we can help your company create a comprehensive training program that validates its worth. In the meantime, download our free white paper: “Proving the ROI of Training: Moving from Expense to Necessity.”

Check back for the next installment in our series next week when we’ll share tuX attendee feedback on where the gaps are in training and development based on our polling.

Tags: "formalized training", "high-performance workforce", manufacturing, ROI, "standardized training", "training and development", tuX