A training manager’s diary: The not-so-secret diary of a training manager

This month’s entries: IT’s revenge and TNA snarl-up

24 October

Bliss is it this dawn to be alive: our HRD has gone to the annual Chartered Institute of Personnel and Developmentjamboree in some obscure northern spa. “Harrogate’s the only place to be in October,” he told me last week. “It’s important that we at the forefront of HR policy mingle in a mutually beneficial environment to get a helicopter view of the latest thinking and strategies. Discussingcomps and bens brings rigour and clarity to a complex issue.” God knows what he’s on, but I guess talking guff goes with the territory. While he’s away, I’m putting the finishing touches to our external accreditation arrangements with Prangcaster Uni and management prof Barry Buck. Looks like most of our senior management will, by winging their way through our training, get what the prof assures me is a sought-after academic qualification, including a masters in HR-ology. Brill!

1 November

The delayed meeting on the future of Prangcaster Council’s e-learning system SOAP (Skills Open All Points) was held today. Despite my fellow training manager Lynda’s valiant efforts, it looks like the future will not include SOAP. It’s all washed up. “The metrics show that usage by key knowledge-acquisition groups has not met expectations, except for IT, where take-up has been very high,” announced the HRD. Given his view that IT staff are less use than an Asbo in Hackney, I knew SOAP’s life was ebbing away. “I’ll recommend to the chief financial officer that SOAP be turned off at the end of the year, part of the money saved used to fund the accreditation arrangements with Prangcaster University, and IT staff be given a £5-a-month book allowance.”

10 November

I must say our desktop IT has plumbed new depths since the announcement of SOAP’s demise. Response – never fast – is now sloth-like applications regularlyfall overand desktop support comes in the shape of surlyT-shirt-wearing monosyllabic propeller heads who had been on back-office duties. It’s the IT manager’s revenge. Whatever – it’s put a spanner into my online TNA system development effort – one of my key objectives for the year. I now slave over Excel day and night to get everything – in IT-speak – hunk-dory for month-end roll-out.

17 November

It’s decision timefor this year’s HR department Christmas lunch venue. The constant falling over of Outlook – I feel the result of the HRD “dissin'” IT – means it was overlooked. It’ll be the Bombay Tapas Bar, which is doing a special December £8 Balti and Cobra special. You can’t say it’s not seasonal. More worryingly, I’ve got into the HRD’s Outlook calendar and noticed he has a meeting next month with Rodney Wedge. I’m sure he’s MD of L&D outsourcer Drabita. Do I see red for danger?

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