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Training innovations with the Skills Manager

08/02/2018
door Frank SAVANN
Taal: EN
Document available also in: FR DE

A training plan often comes down to a list of training courses, the implementation of which involves human (internal trainers), teaching (material and digital resources) or financial (budgetary) support.

However, training should be a means rather than an end,  just like the choice of whether to invest in qualifications.

At this time of year, In the autumn, the process of drafting training plans, or discussions between managers and HR departments, often take place, involving imperious demands about requirements for training courses: "which must be brought forward to take place before a certain date, to allow us to complete the training plan which we have to present to the MD before the end of the year."

If we simply replace the term 'requirements' by 'wishes', or 'requests for training courses', we can usefully introduce a new dimension into the discussions between managers and their colleagues on the question of when, why and how to develop skills.

It is extraordinary to observe the ritual according to which requests for training are made at a certain time, as if the organisation itself was only faced with changes once a year, and that at the end of the year. We should reconsider the question of 'off-plan' programming.

We could also enrich the quality of the discussions between HR departments and managers on questions of skills, rather than on the training programmes' ability to meet individual or collective expectations.

When we observe what is happening in many organisations, the training plan as it is constructed today would end up as an outline of 'means', based on which we would invest other human or financial resources.

Under these conditions, how can we expect a return on investment without a definite objective? How do we rationalise a question of 'HR or Training' which starts from considering the means?

Accordingly, let us start by analysing the problems and objectives linked to the organisations, and to the working situations from which the need for skills arises.

This analysis of needs must be understood in the broad sense. It cannot concentrate on training as the only solution to an objective of 'acquiring skills'  as otherwise, it would be illusory to expect any return on investment.

Let us therefore dispense with the legal or administrative training plan, in these terms and from now on, let us concentrate on the piloting of a 'skills plan'.

Just like the title of Training Manager, which is much too restrictive when considering what can be expected of an office which supports the organisation's business (HRBP), which ensures the respect of several regulatory obligations (including security), and which contributes to the fostering of talent loyalty (who have understood that skills are a short-lived asset) ...

In organisations in a constant state of change, it would therefore be more appropriate to speak of 'Skills Manager' This would show the understanding that skills are not only developed by training, even digitally, but by other means which the Skills Managers of tomorrow must start to explore today.

Translation (French - English) : EPALE France

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