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Major research report shows how the world of training is changing fast


E-learning is making dramatic inroads into the staff development programmes of many companies - but not at the expense of other forms of training. Whilst the future for staff training looks optimistic, the majority of companies are hopeless at evaluating and following-up their staff learning.

These are two of the most startling results from a major research study into Training Trends 2001 published today.

During late 2000, leading internet resource provider TrainingZONE and major show organisers Brintex (responsible for the highly successful annual Training Solutions and IT Training Show) launched a major research survey into current trends in training practice and policy. The online research tool was completed by over 400 Training and HR professionals from a representative sample of companies and organisations.

The research provides up-to-data findings in several areas:

  • Recent and planned changes in the use made of conventional training, online training, outdoor training, coaching and mentoring, and private study
  • experiences to date in the use of online learning
  • attitudes towards electronic learning methods
  • time allocated to staff development
  • current practices in feedback, evaluation and action plans
  • current practices in supporting learners
  • organisational learning culture - and the gap between rhetoric and reality.

Three quarters of Training and HR Managers had personally used online learning tools and their positive comments outweighed their negative ones by two to one. These professionals welcomed the convenience and flexibility of online methods, but were more critical of its isolating nature.

TrainingZONE Director Tim Pickles, commenting today on the Training Trends 2001 findings said: "These results provide us with an illuminating and challenging view of the state of workplace training today. Athough the role of staff development looks secure, there is little scope for complacency - the learning support practices in many organisations leave much to be desired."

Frazer Chesterman, Organiser of the Training Solutions Show highlighted the changing patterns in training delivery: "The uptake of online learning methods has progressed further than we had previously anticipated. The growth in coaching and mentoring schemes is also a welcome development. We were particularly surprised to discover that most Training and HR Managers are not planning to cut back on their more traditional classroom training approaches."

An interesting focus of the study was on company attitudes and culture towards staff development and learning.

TrainingZONE and Training Solutions are collaborating again this year to run the H.O.T. (Hands on Training) Event 2001. Over 500 training professionals will be attending the Event running at the National Exhibition Centre, Birmingham on 26-28 June 2001. The Event has lined up a host of top name speakers and workshops focusing on: the impact of e-learning; government training policies and funding; and innovation in training.

The full Training Trends 2001 Report is available online here.


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