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Seb Anthony

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Does anyone use a particular model or template for their ROI's? Can anyone give some sound advice in this area?
Sue Wood

3 Responses

  1. Calculating ROI
    I have found the following book to be a great source of information on how to develop an ROI by focusing on the first four levels of evaluation. “How to Measure Training Results” by Jack Phillips and Ron Stone (ISBN 0071387927) provides a systematic approach to the process and gives lots of pointers on how to quantify the benefits, which is typically the most difficult part of the equation.

    I have not found there to be one model I could use for all projects. Whereas the direct costs of a programme are relatively easy to calculate, the indirect opportunity costs still relatively straightforward to estimate, most calculations struggle on the benefits side. Frequently, it felt as if you were trying to fit a square peg into a round hole, because the traditional model was not suited to the specific application.

    I’ve found that by working with the project sponsor at the same time as scoping out the project, to define actual or proxy measures and the methodologies to be used to gather the data, the ROI exercise itself is “signed off” by all the key parties and therefore the results are accepted when they are presented at the end of the project.

    Phillips’ and Stone’s book, together with some of the others that have been written on the subject have convinced me that it is possible to define proxy measures for most training requirements.

    One last thought: sometimes when we’ve struggled to create the model we will use, it’s because the original brief was unclear; the business objectives weak. Another good reason to begin the ROI calculation at the start of the project, as it acts as a further “check and balance”.

  2. EvaluationZone can help
    Sue, if you are interested ROI issues further, subscribing to TrainingZONE’s online development programme EvaluationZone will give you the opportunity to talk through issues with other members and gain some advice and techniques to use from Paul Kearns, who is well-known for his work in this field. For more information, see

  3. Tool for calculating ROI on blended learning
    Hi Sue

    At Epic we are often asked for advice by organisations who want to work out the ROI of a ‘blended’ solution (e-learning, face to face, mentoring etc). In response to this we developed ‘The Blender’, a spreadsheet based template to plan and cost blended learning programmes. It was developed in conjunction with organisations from both public and private sectors, and has been used extensively by our consultants.
    Based on information that you enter into the tool’s series of linked worksheets about your intended programme, ‘The Blender’ returns a recommended blend for your programme – and costs it out for you. By varying the information entered, you are able to test different blending scenarios, saving you time and a great deal of complicated calculations.When you arrive at the blend that best suits your criteria and budget, you are able to support your argument with a cost-based ROI business case.

    Assumptions built into ‘The Blender, are based on our extensive experience in designing and planning blended learning campaigns. However, you are also able to alter these assumptions to fit your own organisation’s individual circumstances.

    Get in contact if you’d like to know more.

    Best wishes


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