Training news

Lack of measures leaves value of training in limbo

Despite investing over 30bn on training, less than half of UK organisations have any idea whether what they spend is making any difference to profits, efficiency or customer satisfaction. New research from Reed Training shows that despite 60 per cent of managers agreeing what their staff need to learn, less than half those managers have any way of testing what has been learned once individuals return from their training course. Less than a quarter of companies see the main role of training as improving profitability, and most aren’t measuring its effectiveness at all. Organisations’ short-term focus on results remains a key problem for individuals trying to access training in the first place. In more than a third of cases, conflict between line managers and the HR department leads to problems with management and evaluation of training.

Multinationals cultivating more home-grown talent

Multinational organisations are introducing more rigorous and structured processes for succession planning to improve their effectiveness in ‘home-growing’ their leaders, according to research released this week. A report from the Roffey Park Management Institute suggests that organisations are still tapping into the international labour pool to recruit leaders, but that there have been increasing efforts to identify and develop leaders from within. The report, Building Global Leadership: Strategies for Success, said that the increased scale, scope and complexity of international operations created different challenges for global leaders. These include communication across different national and business cultures, creating alignment and support for global strategies and managing and motivating teams over distances. “The global leadership role is tough and lonely,” said authors Annette Sinclair and Barbara Agyeman. “HR practitioners should try to help by offering support mechanisms such as an external coach or a network forum.”

CBI warns of red tape threat to UK’s finance sector

Financial services companies spend up to a third of their training budgets teaching staff about new regulations. In a new report, Promoting a Global Champion, the Confederation of British Industry calls for a moratorium on new regulations, stressing that ‘complacency’ in Brussels could threaten the global status of UK financial services. The CBI suggests management time is diverted away from developing the business and serving customers. And more training will still be required. The CBI said between 2004 and 2006, more than 20 EU measures are likely to be imposed on companies, causing a regulation and consultation overload. CBI deputy director general John Cridland said: “Companies are being battered by the impact of relentless new regulation. It’s forcing a dramatic and wasteful diversion of effort away from the daily battle to keep the UK ahead of its competitors.”

Skills training appeals to younger generation

A survey of young people by SkillCity 2005, the UK’s largest-ever skills festival, shows a cultural shift towards skills-based careers. More than 60 per cent of 16-24 year olds said that it was better to get quality vocational skills rather than a traditional academic degree. In all, 50 per cent of the young people surveyed chose vocational training as the most likely path to a secure and rewarding career. The popularity of vocational careers is driven, in part, by the availability of training. The majority of respondents (69 per cent) said high-quality skills training was available for school leavers in the UK. Concerns about building-up large debts while doing degree courses also appears to be an influencing factor in choosing skills-based further and higher education over more traditional university education.

Look out for Training Magazine with the 16 November issue of Personnel Today

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