When the going gets tough, internal training consultancy is the answer


With the global economy going down, many organisations are finding it difficult to finance their budgetary requirements as per the needs of the various departments.

As organisations take a relook at their budgets, it has been observed with concern that the first item to be revised downwards is the training and development budget.

In developing countries like Zimbabwe which is coming out of an economic crisis, most organisations do not realise the long-term value of developing an employee.

They regard such an exercise as an unnecessary expense, hence any request to send an employee outside for training is not considered a priority.

What innovations should training and development professionals come up with in order for them to avoid the risk of being irrelevant?

Most organiations do have an abundant resource of employees who have taken the initiative to develop themselves professionally who can be utilised, let alone the vast on-the-job experience possessed by senior employees.

How can the training and development professional tap into this ideal source of training?

The training and development professional can consider the following tips that I have tried and realised to be successful in ensuring the training and development function does not end up irrelevant.

Consider job-related training programmes — The training and development professional should consider partnering with line managers in coming up job-related courses which could be designed based on the standard operating procedure manuals.

These could be standard courses that are designed in a unique manner that is relevant to the organisation and designed to close any training gaps that are identified by the line managers during the training needs identification process.

The designed courses are evaluated by the training and development professional in consultation with the relevant line manager so that they are developed into a training manual to be used whenever they are needed.

The training and development department then becomes the custodian of the training manuals which will be updated as and when there are changes in work processes.

Set up an internal training and development consultancy — As alluded to earlier on, organisations are full of training and development resources that could be utilised by the training and development professionals.

Why not tap into this ideal resource and start up an internal training consultancy made up of these employees? What can be done is simple?

Identify the areas that you wish to have training resource persons and invite them to submit their profiles which highlight the areas they are good at as well as their qualifications and experience in their area of interest.

Once you have a pool of interested persons, set up a panel that will look at the interested respondents and select the best resource persons who can be used in the various areas.

The next stage would be to organize a train-the-trainer course for the selected resource persons which is meant to equip them with technical skills that they require in order for them to train others.

The training and development department should them create a database of these resource persons who will called upon to assist with training when there is need.

However, there is need to motivate these resource persons since their coming in results in huge savings for the organisation.

This could in the form of a “token of appreciation” to be determined by management in recognition of the wonderful job which they do.

With such an arrangement in place, even when the going gets tough for the organisation, training and development won’t be relegated to the peripheries, but will continue to get its due recognition as it should always be.

Paul Nyausaru is training and development practitioner. Email: pnyausaru@yahoo.co.uk or pnyausaru@gmail.com. Views contained in this article are personal.