Analyzing Your Training Department’s Organization

Analyzing Your Training Department’s Organization

So far we have analyzed how your training function is perceived within the organization. Now we are going to turn our attention to obtaining all of the information required to operate the training

department. Much of this information may already be available. If so, then this is only a collecting activity. However, if information is not available, you need procedures for creating it. This information includes:

? The training department’s organization and positions

? The type of training delivery systems used

? The type of personnel conducting training

? Methods currently used to identify training needs

? Parties responsible for identifying training needs



The Training Function’s Organization and Positions

Many training departments will have an organization chart and position descriptions. Even if you have such items, you should review the principles introduced in this chapter to determine how well they apply. You may want to make some revisions. If you do not have such items, then the instructions and forms in this chapter will help you to produce an organization chart for your department and basic descriptions of training department positions. However, this book does not attempt to provide details of all possible organization structures, position description formats, and organization chart types. It is merely meant to give you a procedure to create basic ones to use with this book.


Training’s Mission Statement

The first step in creating an organization chart and position descriptions for training is to state the training function’s objective or mission—why it exists within the organization. What is its primary purpose? What makes it unique? Why is it different from every other function of the organization? The mission statement should be a direct, simple, and easily understood. If you already have one, that’s great. If not, you need to create one. Here’s the mission statement offered as the basis for this book:


To provide employees with the skills and knowledge required to ensure optimum performance results, develop a cache of employees qualified to meet the organization’s operational needs and objectives, and contribute to positive morale, employee satisfaction, and development


Your training function’s mission statement does not have to be the same. There may be other factors to consider within your organization. Your organization may even have a format for mission statements.


A review of a number of training department mission statements identified some common elements, among them:

? Providing employees with the skills and knowledge required for their jobs

? Contributing to meeting the organization’s performance objectives

? Assisting with maintaining employee morale

? Ensuring the availability of qualified employees to meet future needs

? Meeting specifically identified employee and organization needs

? Operating within approved budgets

? Improving relationships with internal and external clients

? Providing measurable results


If you already have a training mission statement, review it to ensure it describes the function’s purpose. If it does not, perhaps it needs revision. If you do not have a mission statement, now is the time to write one. In doing so, you might find it helpful to meet with employees in training, internal clients, and whomever training reports to. These individuals can provide valuable insights as to what they believe training should accomplish.


When you are ready, write what you believe the mission statement is or should be on the following lines. Write it in one sentence (beginning with the word ‘‘to’’).


To _____________________________________________________________


Key Result Areas

Next, you need to identify the key result areas that training is required to fulfill in order to meet its mission, or its objective. Key result areas are the major activities assigned to training. For example, the key result areas of a human resources departm

ent usually include activities such as recruiting, compensation, benefits, and employee relations. The key result areas of the finance department include accounts payable, accounts receivable, payroll, credit, and budgeting and analysis activities.


To identify your training department’s key result areas, consider the major activities the department is supposed to accomplish.


Consider also the mission statement. Fulfilling the key result areas should ensure the department’s mission statement is also fulfilled.


The list of activities provided in Chapter 2 may be of assistance in identifying your training department’s key result areas. How ever, you may have some that are not listed, and you may not have all on the list. These activities include accountability for:

? Training organization

? Training personnel

? Employee training

? Employee development

? Remedial training

? Organizational development

? Communications

? Management and maintenance of training facilities

? Identification of training needs

? Training design and development

? Training delivery

? Assessment and measurement



Table 2.1 is a short form on which you can write the key result areas you have identified for your training department.



On the lines below, write the key result areas you have identified for your training function, but include only the eight most important ones. There may be more, but limiting the number will ensure the most important are listed. Each should be a descriptive phrase or single sentence. List them in descending order of importance for the department’s success.


1. ____________________________________________________________________

2. ____________________________________________________________________

3. ____________________________________________________________________

4. ____________________________________________________________________

5. ____________________________________________________________________

6. ____________________________________________________________________

7. _________________________________________________________


8. ____________________________________________________________________





The Organization Chart

Now let’s construct a training department organizational chart based on the mission statement and key result areas you have identified. There are many theories on what makes for the best organization chart format. For our purposes, we are going to use a traditional approach. Here are the basic guidelines for that approach:

? Every position should have a separate box on the organization chart, with the position’s title written within the box.

? If there is more than one job with a similar title, the job title should be shown in one box with the number of such jobs written beneath the job title.

? Every position box should indicate a reporting relationship. There should be a line connecting either the top or side of the box to the position to which it reports. Even the top position box on the organization chart should have a line going upward to indicate that it, too, reports to another position.


? Positions that supervise other positions should have a line from the bottom of their position boxes to the boxes of the other positions. In some cases, the line may be from the side of the position box.

? Positions should be shown at their relative levels of accountability within the department. Those with the most accountability should be higher on the organization chart than those with lower accountability.


Let’s assume a training department consists of the following positions:


? Training director

? Facilities manager

? Training delivery manager

? Training design manager

? Four skill trainers

? Two management trainers

? Scheduler

? Administrative assistant

? Two designers

? Researcher

Now, let’s list these positions again, but this time in descending order of accountability by levels, so each row represents a different level on an organization chart, as follows:


Training Director

Facilities Manager

Training Delivery Manager

Training Design Manager

Skill Trainer

Management Trainers

Training Designers






You’ll notice the administrative assistant position is not shown at a level of accountability. This is because it is a staff support position; its chart position will be described in a moment.




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