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Measuring ROI from learning


Too many organisations rely on the 'feel good' factor to justify their training budget, avoiding the much harder question of whether their investment really will pay off.

According to Parity, this approach does little to impress an increasingly cost-conscious Board. Parity argues that if Training Managers are to continue to maintain a skills development plan in the face of widespread budget cuts, they must be prepared to think in more commercial terms.

"By 2005 60% of all training projects will need some form of ROI justification to get the go-ahead", said Barbara Greenway, Parity Training's Managing Director.

The company has launched a 'how to' guide to measure Return on Investment (ROI) from learning activities. Set out in six steps, it includes:

  • Defining objectives - what do you want to get out of your training?
  • Skills assimilation - what did your staff really learn from the training course?
  • Cost itemisation - what did the course really cost you in terms of setting up, fees involved, man-hours spent?
  • Benefit analysis - how to convert the achievements into monetary value
  • Doing the maths - what is good ROI?
  • Evaluation - reporting the actual measured impact of the training undertaken

"At first glance, it seems virtually impossible to get any sort of concrete ROI out of training, because it can be difficult to measure the impact of specific training on factors such as staff morale or customer satisfaction," said Barbara Greenway.

"Taking a step by step approach to developing appropriate metrics is definitely an important start as Training Managers will increasingly find that they have no alternative but to be able to prove the worth of learning activity in terms of hard currency," she added.

<a href=""<Parity's Web site


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