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3 Training Plan Templates to Develop Your Employees

 

Investing in your employees is one of the best decisions you can make to help boost your company’s success. Training your staff can give them the confidence to do their job and the skills to perform efficiently. However, it can be difficult to know what to include in a training plan to ensure it’s implemented successfully. A training plan template provides all the essentials you need for successful training, no matter what type of training you’re organizing.

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What’s a training plan?

At the most basic level, a training plan is simply a document that details a training program. It includes the goals of the training, learning outcomes and how training will be delivered. It can be used to provide a big picture of the training needs of your whole organization or to help individual employees improve their performance and develop new skills. You may also use a training plan template to ensure new employees receive all the training required to effectively perform their roles.

A training plan is different to an employee development plan, although the terms are sometimes used interchangeably. A training plan looks at the current needs of your employees and the organization over the short-term, while an employee development plan focuses on your employees’ overall career development.

Although the purposes of the two documents are different, a good training plan will take an employee development plan into account. Likewise, a good development plan will include opportunities for training. Looking at the two documents as part of the same whole can help you properly develop your employees and ensure they have the skills needed to help your organization grow.

Why is a training plan important?

Training and development can be an expensive undertaking, but it brings a wide range of benefits to a business, including:

  • Filling knowledge gaps: Regularly investigating your employees’ skills lets you quickly identify gaps in knowledge and ensure they have the competencies required to effectively do their jobs.
  • Enhancing employee performance: Employees who regularly undergo training can learn new skills that help with their job performance. Training also reinforces skills they may forget over time. This added confidence helps them become more productive.
  • Improving staff retention: A study by Sodexo found that companies with strong learning cultures have engagement and retention rates 30-50% higher than other organizations. If you give your people the opportunity to develop, they’re more likely to stay at your company, saving you time and money in hiring and training someone new.
  • Ensuring succession planning: Having a strong training plan ensures that when employees do leave, you have someone ready to step into the role. Promoting from within helps you retain institutional knowledge and minimizes downtime.
  • Maintaining consistency: A strong training plan, especially for new employees, can help ensure everyone is working from the same base of information. If everyone is trained in the same way, there’s consistency throughout the team, and the company’s policies and procedures are more likely to be followed.

A learning culture doesn’t just bring positives for you as a business owner. Employees gain greater workplace satisfaction in companies that care about their development. Training plans also give them new opportunities and can help them develop and work toward career goals. This all helps boost employee productivity and engagement.

Parts of a training plan

Although creating training plans can be time consuming, especially when developing organization-wide or new employee plans, they’re relatively simple. To ensure your training plan covers the essentials, it should address the following points:

  • Current role: Define the employee’s current role. If you’re developing a plan for the whole corporation, define your company’s role or mission. It’s important to know what your employee or organization does to be able to see what sort of training would be useful.
  • Learning gap: Define the skills an employee or your organization is missing to be able to effectively do their job.
  • Training goals: What do you want this training to achieve? Use SMART goals and think about the benefits to both your employee and your organization.
  • Learning outcomes: Know what you want to get out of the training. This is different from a training goal. A goal defines how you want the training to assist your employee, while a learning outcome defines the specific skills they should gain from the training. For example, if a training goal is to provide better customer service, the learning outcomes for the training might be to understand and apply active listening skills.
  • Type of training: Detail how the employee will be learning these new skills. Think about whether it will be a group or individual training, in-house or outsourced training and how the information will be conveyed.
  • Resources: List resources the employee can use to complete the training. This may include resources provided during the training session, such as company policies, and outside resources like websites or books. Don’t overlook resources within your organization, such as coaching or mentoring opportunities.
  • Success measures: Think about how you’ll define successful training. This is partly covered by creating SMART goals, but it’s good to write down these success indicators. You want to make sure both you and your employee know how this training is expected to help them improve their job performance. Link the training to your employee’s KPIs or project outcomes.
  • Time frame: Include the dates when the training should occur, how long it will take to complete and when you’ll catch up with your employee to discuss the effectiveness of the training.

3 types of training plan templates

New employee training plan

You should develop a new employee training plan template for all your new hires. This will generally have two components: orientation and role-specific training. The orientation is the same for every new employee and covers the company’s culture, structure and mission. New employees also learn about administrative procedures and corporate policies, and complete any required paperwork.

Role-specific training, or onboarding, helps employees quickly learn the skills and knowledge needed to perform their job. If you regularly hire employees to do the same job, such as call center operators or checkout assistants, you may train groups of new hires at one time with the same training plan. New hires starting in a more specialized role generally have an individual training plan developed in conjunction with their manager. You may want to incorporate this into a 30-60-90 day plan that lets new employees set their own goals for their first three months in the job.

New employee training plan template

Name:

Role:

Start date:

Orientation:

Orientation task

Date completed

Received handbook

Company culture training

Mission and values

Administrative procedures

Received system login

Completed paperwork

Onboarding:

Learning goal: This will generally be to provide the employee with the skills and knowledge required to perform their job

Training:

Training type

Learning outcome

Date completed

E.g. Group phone training

Able to use the company multiline phone system

Additional resources: List any additional resources available

Measures of success: List how you’ll know the training has been successful

Individual training plan

Individual training plans are used for existing employees. They’re generally part of a regular performance review or employee development plan, but can also be used as part of a performance improvement plan, especially if the employee indicates they’re struggling due to a missing skill.

An individual training plan should develop the existing skills of an employee, and any training provided should help them perform their role more efficiently and effectively. The training can also help them prepare for different roles in the organization. It should be developed collaboratively with the employee, taking into consideration the skills they feel they’re missing as well as their career goals.

Individual training plan template

Name:

Date:

Current role:

Learning gap:

Training goals:

Learning outcomes:

Type of training:

Additional resources:

Success measures:

Training completed by:

Next meeting:

Corporate training plan

Your corporate training plan should look at the skills needed across the organization. This can include:

  • Gaps that need to be filled
  • New technologies or industries you want to utilize
  • Regular training that needs to be managed

Not every company will have regular training needs, but for some industries, such as health care, it’s essential. If you’re in an industry where regulations stipulate a certain number of training hours are completed to maintain employee or company licensing, your corporate training plan should include these requirements.

Although a corporate training plan looks at the training required for your whole organization, it must be incorporated into individual training plans. Make sure any training listed in this plan is added to individual plans and keep records of what’s completed.

Corporate training plan template

Company name:

Date:

Company mission:

Current learning gaps: What skills are employees missing

Regular training needs: Any regular training needs required by the company or regulations

Learning goal

Type of training

Learning outcomes

Timeline

E.g. Increase understanding of SEO

Workshop

Understand elements that improve SEO

Schedule mm/dd/yyyy

Additional resources:

Measurements of success:

Date for next review:

Tips for using a training plan template

Using a training plan template ensures you capture all the essential information. To get the most from your training plan, take the following actions:

  • Get employee input: Your employees know what skills they’re missing, so ask them. These can be one-on-one talks, small group brainstorming or company-wide discussions. If multiple employees mention a single gap, it’s a good time to arrange group training so everyone receives the benefits.
  • Explain to employees: Make sure your employees understand the goals and expected outcomes of training. In onboarding, this may be done in groups. You can also discuss the corporate plan with your whole workforce to help them understand your vision for the company. Managers should sit down with individuals annually to discuss training goals for the coming year.
  • Diversify: Training can come in many forms, so don’t be afraid to explore your options. Consider individual versus group training and in-house versus outsourced sessions. You may even want to explore college courses for employees who need advanced skills. Don’t forget to think about coaching, mentoring and cross-training to ensure employees gain skills in different areas of operation.
  • Give responsibility to employees: For individual training, you may want to ask your employee to organize their own training, or define how they want to receive the training. This helps them take ownership and get the most out of the opportunity.

Assess success: After the training, take the time to talk to the employee, in a formal or informal setting, to see how useful the training was. This can help you assess whether to offer it to other employees. You can also look at performance metrics to see if their work has improved.

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