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SWBC's BusinessHub blog is a one-stop resource for business owners and company decision makers.


Identifying Your Company's Training and Development Needs: Employee Feedback

identifying_your_companys_training_and_development_needs_employee_feedback_bodyThe best business leaders listen to their employees and go out of their way to solicit feedback and input. All employees want to feel valued and heard, and when you empower your employees to share their ideas and provide honest feedback and opportunities for improvement, your entire organization can benefit and improve because of it. Even negative feedback is a good thing—constructive criticism can lead to development and growth for your company, and any improvements made to your business can impact your customers, which directly impacts your bottom line for the better.

In this blog post, we’ll discuss how getting and applying employee feedback can help improve your company’s training and development program.

Feedback is everywhere

Employee feedback offers information that you can't afford to pass up, so always have your ears and eyes open. Listen for problems that you can solve. Every employee can offer a unique perspective on your organization and its culture. If you take the time to properly listen and evaluate the information you receive in surveys, during onboarding and exit interviews, or pick up around the water cooler, you're sure to hear good tips for improving efficiency, structuring workloads, retaining other valuable employees, and recruiting new candidates.

Formal feedback options

To get a comprehensive look at your employees’ experience and identify possible areas of improvement, it’s important to gather data in various forms and from different sources. Some likely sources of robust information include onboarding feedback, post-training surveys, roundtable discussions and focus groups, needs analysis surveys, and exit interviews.

Related Reading: Use Exit Interviews to Gain Valuable Information for Your Organization

If you want to create surveys that will provide you with the important information you need, and also actually get completed, consider these five simple tips:

  1. Keep your surveys short

  2. Make your questions clear and concise

  3. Avoid open-ended questions

  4. Offer an incentive

  5. Follow up with a thank you

Actually Do Something with the Feedback You Get

Collecting feedback to collect feedback is meaningless—the point is to do something with the information you collect and then share that with others.

One important thing to do with the feedback is to incorporate it into a yearly refresh of your training and development strategy. A 24X7 Learning survey revealed that only 12% of learners say they apply the skills from the training they receive to their job. This suggests that learner needs aren't being determined effectively before developing a program.

It’s important to continuously monitor and revise your training program to ensure that it meets the needs of both your employees and the business. Asking for feedback from your employees shouldn’t just be done once—it should be done multiple times. Ask for feedback immediately, 30, and 90 days after important training or other events.

Once you receive feedback, you can analyze the responses and decide what tweaks need to be made to maximize the potential of your efforts. Remember to share with employees specific improvements you have made as a result of their feedback! This helps keep them invested and reinforces your commitment to their needs.

Collecting employee feedback and using it to improve your company helps employee performance and contributes to the organization’s success. Listening to and valuing the opinions of all employees can ultimately lead to providing the tools and information that employees need to perform their jobs better. This means increased efficiencies, higher productivity, and a boost in morale among your staff.

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