Organizations often spend a fortune on employee training and development. According to Training Magazine’s industry report, in 2021-2022 alone, United States organizations spent more than $100 billion on employee training and development. But was this immense investment justified through actual metrics? In other words, did the investment in training and development result in the fulfillment of the organization’s goals and achieve the desired results? While the answer depends largely on one’s goals, Ozemio uses a foolproof method to gauge the effectiveness of your training initiatives.
Ozemio employs the Kirkpatrick Model, one of the most trusted methods of determining the effectiveness of a training program by using four levels of evaluation. This model was developed by Donald Kirkpatrick in 1959, and while various interpretations of this model have evolved since the Kirkpatrick Model’s inception, this article will focus on the original levels of evaluation that Mr. Kirkpatrick devised. According to the Kirkpatrick Model, there are four levels of evaluation:
Level 1 is the easiest and fastest way to evaluate a program by assessing a learner’s overall reaction by means of a short survey administered to the participants at the end of the training. For instance, after receiving direct feedback from employees after their completion of an onboarding program, the efficacy of the onboarding program can be instantly measured on the basis of the learner’s feedback reaction.
Level 2 assesses the changes in the learner’s knowledge or learning, which is crucial because most training programs are designed to either upskill employees or share information about which the learner may not have been initially aware. In addition, post-training assessment can help determine how well the learner understands the concepts covered in the training.
Level 3 is more complex and time-consuming because the process analyzes tangible behavioral changes that often require monitoring on-the-job employee activities which can span months or even years. For example, the reduction of security incidents after security training. While this behavioral data may take years to obtain, behavioral data provides undeniable evidence regarding whether or not the training was effective.
Level 4 is often the trickiest evaluation method as results directly align the training outcome with the organizational goal. For example, an organization that aspires to increase its customer base conducts a training on how to convert sales leads into clients. During the training the organization notes a considerable increase in its customers. In this case, the outcome of the training was directly aligned with the organization’s goal of increasing the customer base.
In conclusion, while it’s important to be aware of The Kirkpatrick Model’s four evaluation levels, it’s equally important to think about the evaluation method during the planning phase of training. In many cases little or no thought is given to the evaluation method during the planning phase of training, resulting in training that’s irrelevant to the employees. Hence, Ozemio’s meticulous consideration of the evaluation method at the initiation phase of training helps design and develop training initiatives with a clear objective, resulting in training programs that are more relevant, competitive, and attuned to business goals.