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Has anyone got a observation checklist assessing training provider


We have had a few problems with training providers we have selected from a tendering process that we have used in the past. to improve this we have decided to include an observation of shortlisted providers delivering their training in our next tendering process.

The observation will be done by different people (due to time constraints). Has anyone used a similar idea before and developed a assessment checklist I could have a look at?

Thanks for your help.

derek hughes

7 Responses

  1. Not Sure
    I think we have a couple of items you might find want to look at. E Mail me for copies:


  2. whose checklist?
    At the risk of sounding obtuse, shouldn’t you and your colleagues be writing your own checklist of the behaviours YOU want to see in your prospective trainers?

    I appreciate that you are looking to avoid re-inventing the wheel but you will have to look closely at the provenance of any checklist you find elsewhere.

    By shortcutting and using someone else’s “assessment” you may well otherwise be looking for the “wrong” things, which could lead you to the same problems you are currently facing.

  3. The perils & pitfalls of procuring learning
    Dear Derek

    It is very sad that your faith in the quality of training provided by major learning providers has fallen to such a low ebb. However this is not uncommon and you are not alone. Some time ago I wrote an article about the Perils & pitfalls of procuring learning, which highlighted this specific issue:

    The principle of Caveat emptor (Let the buyer beware!) is well established in contract law. Insisting on an assessed observation would certainly make sense. However there are potential pitfalls. Any checklist that is not externally benchmarked carries some risk. Problems can also arise when more than one individual is using the same check-list. Subjectivity inevitably creeps in unless the checklist is very carefully devised. This can create scope for liability if it can be proved that some form of discrimination or bias is evident.

    I hope this helps.

    Best wishes

  4. It’s not just about delivery

    Whilst I agree with Adrian that you can look for external verification of trainers’ delivery skills it is also important that you consider the support package that a provider offers. What is their managment and administration like? Will they be there when you need them to move delegates at short notice, organise alternative venues, provide you with the MI you need to measure value etc?

    What are their designers and developers like? Do they understand your culture and values or are they PowerPoint presentation gurus?

    The trainers are just at the delivery end of what, if done correctly, are crucial elements of training.

    Hope you get what you are looking for in a partner organisation.


  5. To what standard

    Are you looking for reliability of a delivery system or reliability of an individual.

    For the reliability of a system then to look for a person accredited in that system is a good call; that person knows how to use the system. It might be worth looking beyond the system at the individual and their overall competence and behaviour.

    With regards to the live accreditation process, as has been identified, it is a difficult area to ensure consistency; training your assessors in your processes will be key.

    I would be more than happy to chat to you offline about how we have endeavoured to accomodate that.


  6. Thanks for your tips
    Thanks for your stimulating comments. I will be looking at the article/checklists provided.

    Our main issue has been the quality of the trainers in the training room (from a variety of companies) who look good on paper and a good sales pitch/presentation is made saying all the right things.

    We’ve had everything from co-trainers falling asleep (whilst their colleague delivers) to accusations of bullying trainers to generally poor facilitation skills. (and this is from a variety of organisations with qualified professionals).

    Here’s hoping for better outcomes from our next procurement process!

  7. Tendering Style
    Hi Derek
    I hope that you are devising a useful checklist. I wonder if you also want to relook at the tender process. I have attended a few tender presentations and have felt that they have been very artifical and are a difficult way for me to express the skills that I have. I have also been in the purchaser seat and had experiences similiar to yours, particularly when they send in the big guns for the pitch presentation and a school leaver to actually do the training! I have written an article about pitching to stimulate debate and discussion about ways of making the process more open and honest. You can email me at [email protected] and I will send it over to you, it might help get you and your team reviewing how you go about the procurement of trainers so that you end up with something which is a much better fit!
    Best wishes


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