Training Industry Magazine - May/June 2017 - 55

SECRETS OF SOURCING
DOUG HARWARD

CONTROLLING
VARIATION IN TIME
TO PERFORMANCE
Traditional workplaces are changing.
Employees are working remotely more
than ever and have access to almost
any information at their fingertips. The
expectations of how workers want to
learn are changing as well. To adapt,
training managers are being tasked
with transforming the training function
from traditional course-based systems
to those that balance classroom and
online courses with informal learning
experiences such as coaching and onthe-job training.

we must understand the seven elements
of T2P that impact a learner's ability to
get to a targeted level of proficiency as
fast and inexpensively as possible. Then,
we can design a system that controls
the variation of each element. The more
we control these elements, the faster
and less costly we can be at achieving
targeted performance. The more
variation and less structured we are
around each, the higher the probability
that it will take longer and have higher
cost. Here are those seven elements:

Before embarking on the process of
transformation, we must know what
we are transforming to. To help you
envision what your transformed training
function should look like, refer to a very
old principle of training - one that we
fundamentally understand but often
gets lost in how we do things. It is the
principle of "time to proficiency" (T2P) -
also referred to as time to competency.

1| Expected Level Of Core Skills
Be clear as to what entry level skills
are expected of new workers and hire
based on those skills.

Our research has taught us that
organizations that operate an integrated
system of learning solutions that focus
on getting a learner from an entry
level of core skills to a targeted level of
proficiency as fast and inexpensively as
possible is one that can better measure
results and demonstrate impact to the
business. Alternatively, we have found
that organizations that focus on building
mini school houses with topic-based
curriculums allowing learners to pick
and choose what training they desire
often struggle with how to measure
impact and meet the expectations of the
business and the learner.
How do we use the T2P model to envision
our transformed training function? First,

2| Process for Onboarding
Prior to starting a new role, workers
need knowledge and skills to do the job
autonomously. Designing a controlled
onboarding experience minimizes risk
of failure while on the job.
3| Expected Skill Level
at Point of Autonomy
Autonomy is that point where a worker
leaves onboarding and performs the
job on their own. Defining the expected
skills necessary for a worker to do the
job on their own is critical to controlling
workplace errors and risk of failure.
4| Process for Formalizing
Informal Learning
Informal learning allows the learner
to continue to evolve based on job
experiences. Formalizing an approach
to on-the-job training and ongoing
structured
learning
programs
is
necessary for continuous development.

5 | Process for Reinforcement
To minimize the effect of forgetting on
the job, design reinforcement activities
into the learning system, such as access
to performance support content and
structured learning interventions to
reinforce critical skills and knowledge.
6 | Targeted Skill Level When Proficient
Be clear as to the targeted skill level
expected of successful workers. This
is the ultimate goal to get a worker
to this level as fast and inexpensively
as possible.
7 | Process for Upskilling
All jobs change over time. Managing
"retraining" or upskilling of jobs for
new tools, processes and performance
expectations is critical to ongoing success.
From where I sit, understanding what
we are transforming to is just as
important as understanding the process

WE MUST FIRST
UNDERSTAND
WHAT WE ARE
TRANSFORMING TO.
for transformation. You can't transform
successfully without understanding
what you are transforming to. By
spending time on understanding the
concept of time to proficiency, we will
have a much clearer vision of our next
generation training function.
Doug Harward is CEO of Training Industry,
Inc. and a former learning leader in the hightech industry. Email Doug.

T R A I N I N G I N DUSTR Y MA GAZ INE - MIND THE GAP 201 7 I WWW . T RAININGINDU S T RY . C OM/ MAGAZ I NE

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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Training Industry Magazine - May/June 2017

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