Understanding Your Training Options
Business training has evolved substantially in the last few years. The traditional ‘prescribed’ classroom based course has largely given way to a more flexible ‘onsite’ style of training delivery. Instead of travelling to a public event, many training providers are now willing to come to your own offices. Even computer based training is being delivered in this way with many Companies providing all of the equipment needed, such as laptops.
These articles aim to provide insight into the various options available and help you to make a more informed choice for your business.
Onsite Computer Training at Your Offices
With the reliance on computers in today’s work place, it’s little wonder that IT training has become an essential component in most staff members development. Microsoft Office is now the de facto software package in virtually every business on the Planet and a good working knowledge of Excel and Word considered essential.
If you only have the occasional individual employee who needs up-skilling in MS Office, then a traditional classroom-based course may fit the bill. However, at an average of £300 per person (plus VAT), it can become expensive. By comparison, many providers can offer attractive rates for onsite training at your own offices, particularly if you have several staff to train. Rates vary significantly, but expect to pay in the region of £500 – £1000 per day for a small group of up to ten delegates. Most will levy a small charge for the hire of laptops in addition to the daily rate, but the total price is likely to be much less than sending your employees on to a public course. Our Company is based in Sheffield and we recently employed Paul Brown Training to deliver an Intermediate level Excel course onsite. We were very happy with the results and you can get more information about onsite Excel training on their website.
Determining the Correct Level of Training
Many business training courses will be delivered at varying levels to suit the delegates current experience. Determining the correct level for your staff is critical to getting the most from your training investment. If the training is pitched too high, delegates will struggle to learn. If it is too low, they will quickly lose interest.
Many training companies will provide some form of ‘training needs analysis’ which enables you to take the guess work out. Usually this will involve completing a questionnaire for each staff member and submitting to the training provider. Look for a company which provides this as a free service and take advantage of it. Be aware however that if your staff are at widely varying levels of experience, you will likely have to split them across more than training session. Even the best training providers will struggle with delegates of differing ability and will be forced to move forward at the pace of those with the least experience. This may mean that not all of the material will be covered, so you might as well have booked more than one day in the first place. Nonetheless, look for a training provider who is prepared to be flexible in their approach, rather than just ‘prescribe’ a set program. An acceptable balance can often be achieved with a little consultation on both sides.
Tailored Training Sessions
Sometimes and ‘off the peg’ training solution might not suit your Company’s needs. In which case, look for a provider which will be willing to customise material to suit your exact requirements. This again is a service which should be provided free of charge, but always be guided by their recommendations. It’s no use for example mixing foundation level content with topics at an advanced level in the same session. You will need to be realistic in your expectations of what can be taught in a single session. Also, when moving through multiple levels of training you will need to consider time between to allow for assimilation of the material. This might be a few days or even several weeks, depending upon the material being learned.