ARTICLE: Various Off-The Job Training and Development Methods

Training is that organizational activity which has the aim of the enhancing the skill sets of the employees. The training and development activities are associated with improving the productivity of the organization. The employees also feel motivated and valued when the companies take initiatives to enhance the skills of their workers. A motivated worker does his/her job well and it, in turn, increases the effectiveness of the processes and the overall productivity of the organizations.

The competition is increasing rapidly, and one way through which the companies can gain a competitive advantage over their rivals is to keep their workforce equipped with the latest skills and capabilities to do a certain job in best possible manner. The training department is an extension of the human resource management where the training professional took care of the current and desired skill levels of the employees. The main function of the training department is to find out the need for imparting training and then designing a program to enhance a particular skill.

As the people working in any organization are the most important asset for them that is why it is the utmost responsibility of the firms to keep them trained so that they can work well to give success to the company. Human resource is the most complicated asset as well as there are many other factors associated with the motivation to work hard in the workplace. One way through which the employers can enhance the motivation is by enhancing their skills through different training methods. It is a method to improve the individual capabilities and the overall productivity of the organization. Hence a properly designed training program creates a win-win situation for all the participants and the organization as well.

This article will speak about various off the job training methods which are used by different firms according to the skill set in question. The skill which has to be developed plays a very important role in the training design because different competencies require a different method. The training managers should have a deep understanding of all the training methods so that whatever program they design for their employees give the desired outcome.

DIFFERENT OFF THE JOB TRAINING METHODS

Those training methods come under the off the job training methods which are delivered in different environment than the job setting. The main focus of the trainers is to improving the skill by giving time and opportunity to learn. These methods of training do not focus on the performance like the on the job training procedures. One more aspect of off the job trainings is that it gives the employees a chance and freedom to express themselves. Different training methods under this category are as following:

  • The lecture method including conferences

The lecture method is used by the employers when they have to train a large number of employees at the same time. This is the most widely used training method. There is one instructor who controls the whole process. The trainer has to speak about a keratin topic of process and the participants learn by listening to him/her. The lecture and conference method is particularly important when there is need to provide information to large number of employees. If we speak about its effectiveness for providing everlasting learning, then it is less effective than other off the job training methods. The seminars and conferences are also the part of lecture method of training.

  • Simulation Techniques

There are many companies where the processes are very complicated and risky if untrained people perform them. Therefore the training in these organisations is given by creating an artificial environment which is exactly similar to the actual situation. Four types of training methods are included under the simulation techniques which are discussed as below:

A. The Case Study method

Case studies are brilliant tools for giving an in-depth insight into a particular situation or problem. Scholars of a specific field prepare the case studies, and they give a situation by providing the context of a problem or issues. The trainees have to read the case studies and understand the main points of problems in them. Then they have to give best possible solution for the issues. The case study method is used to demonstrate the theoretical topics or concepts with real-world example associated with them. If the trainers’ main objective is to decrease the gap between the theoretical concept and its applicability by the employees then use of case study method is highly useful for them.

When a case study is discussed in a group, then the participants also get to know about the potential ideas and solutions given by other group members. Case study method is a tool to encourage active learning in the participants, and it also helps to improve the communication and problem-solving skills of the employees. There is usually no right or wrong answer for a case study. Different people give their point of views according to their background, knowledge and understanding of the concept discussed in a particular case study.

B. The Roleplaying technique

In this technique, the trainees learn by adopting a specific role and enacting it on stage in front of other participants who take note of their behaviours, decisions and procedures. This method let the trainees understand the perspectives of different people. The primary learning in the role-playing method does not come by playing a particular role. The actual learning happens when the group of participants discuss the roles played and the decision taken. They can discuss if they have some other point of view or if they do think that t the decision taken by the person in a role was effective enough.

There are many different steps involved in the role play technique of training. First, the participants who are going to enact the role have to give the context for the role play along with its purpose. Then the next step is the enactment of the roles according to the given situation. Once the role play is completed, then the other participants discuss their opinions and viewpoints.

C. The Management games

The management games are explicitly designed to impart the understanding about various functions and requirements which a person should have to manage the business processes. With the help of management games, the trainers try to inculcate the skills such a logical reasoning, teamwork and its importance, effective time management, analytical capabilities, communication skills and the leadership qualities etc. The practical application of a subject or theory is the primary purpose of management games. This method of training is particularly useful for training the managerial level employees where they learn essential management concepts by playing a game. There are different management games for different positions in the organisational hierarchy.

D. The in-basket technique

In-basket training methods consist of all the activities done in a particular job including all the paperwork also such as e-mails, memos, SMS, reports, and even the phone calls too. The person has to acquire the full responsibility for all the activities of a specific job. The trainers with the help of this technique inculcate the capability of prioritizing the tasks according to their importance and urgency.

  • Sensitivity training

The laboratory training or the T-group training is also known as the sensitivity training. The higher officials at the leadership roles need to understand their way of working and managing people. To enhance the leadership capabilities of a person the training systems take hep of sensitivity training. Here the participants remain away from the day to day working and they have to focus on themselves or specific processes only. This is wonderful method to improve the behavioural and social competencies. The trainees become aware of their behaviours, and they also learn to be flexible with their decisions. This method also gives the participants a chance to know what other people think about their opinions or working style.

The sensitivity training is an excellent tool to k ow about the behavioural flexibility, emotional stability, the personal qualities about him or herself and also the similarity or difference with the attributes of other participants in the group. Here the trainer does not play the role of a leader rather he/she becomes the facilitator so that the whole process runs smoothly.

  • Transactional analysis

When the trainees have to be given an insight into the behavioural aspects of other people, then the trainers use the transactional analysis as the training method. The concept of ego states is learnt in this technique. There are three types of ego states which are studied under the transactional analysis which are child, parent and adult. It assumes that the person is in one of these ego states in any social or behavioural interaction.