Education and Training: How Much is Enough? (Part 2)
Read Part 1 of Education and Training: How Much is Enough? here.
Once the required elements of the training and education (T&E) curriculum are identified, then comes what I often consider the more interesting and even fun part of planning T&E content. This involves identifying which additional courses or modules to include within the T&E curriculum. I will simply refer to this categorically as “optional” training. By no means do I want to infer that optional training is any less important than the required training that I described in the previous blog. Rather, optional training relates to specific areas, such as identified risk areas, where T&E efforts can provide an effective mitigating effort in managing identified risks.
Let’s review some key areas to consider when identifying optional training and education content.
Risk, for the purposes of this blog, refers to the possibility of experiencing a negative outcome or adverse situation that an organization would rather prevent from occurring. For example, an organization may be involved in a process that if not followed precisely, could result in financial loss, a data breach, or some other such event. This is where optional T&E can prove especially useful. By providing meaningful T&E, the organization has the potential to minimize the applicable risk by providing refresher or awareness training about the related process. This is one way that training can prove very meaningful, both on an individual level to the employee and to the organization as a whole as a risk mitigation reduction strategy.
Mix it Up!
Sometimes T&E gets a bad image because it may tend to be repetitive or worse yet, people have long forgotten why a particular training course or module needs to be completed to begin with. Often, when it comes to T&E that is needed but falls into the optional category, organizations can decide how to break the monotony associated with T&E by identifying if there may be alternative ways to deliver the T&E’s content. Maybe a recorded audio or video can be used one year and the next year a self-paced, self-learning module can be used. Another option is that there are professional done modules that can be used offered by vendors. Often these can be integrated into an organization’s Learning Management System (LMS). In other words, try not to make T&E appear like a rerun of previous T&E efforts.
Where to Start
T&E represents a genuine opportunity for departments to collaborate. For example, if the human resources department spearheads the production of T&E content, it can also take steps to solicit feedback from departments that may have identified risk areas. It is possible that these risk areas may present very good points of focus for T&E content. Possible departments to check with include Risk Management, Compliance, and Quality Management, to name a few. What also happens is that it is not unusual to identify a risk area that multiple departments may wish to address which also adds a wider scope to the applicability of the T&E curriculum.
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