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Working on Training Needs Analysis (TNA)

Let us look at a scenario.
A leading multi-national company is experiencing a shortfall of revenueand decreasing marginson its products.Its market share has slipped, much to the dismay of its CEO James. To counter the aggressive competition, James wants to launch a slew of new products so that the company can bounce back from the lossesof the last few years. To do so, the sales force needs to be trained on the new products and new ways of selling them.
James knows that the company is facing the heat of competition. Therefore, he calls upon the Chief Marketing Office Lukas and the L&D head Monica to discuss the next steps. During the meeting, Monica suggests that as a first step, a detailed Training Needs Analysis needs be done.
What should be Monica’s first step when proposing a solution?
Monica should conduct an assessment and perform interviews of the sales team members to understand the current levels of their knowledge and skills.
Let us learn more about TNA.
What is TNA?
TNA is a process to determine thetype of solution required to address a performance issue. You can perform a TNA by asking specific questions to find out:

  • The participants or the target audience for thetraining program
  • The purpose of thetraining
  • The areas of focus for the learners
  • The benefit to the learners after the training is taken

Why do you need to conduct a TNA?
You need to conduct a TNA to:

  • Ensure customer requirements have been met
  • Be able to set appropriate objectives and achieve them
  • Create a benchmark for establishing comparisons
  • Enable people to evaluate and continuously upgrade their own performance levels
  • Highlight quality issues and determine focus areas

How can you conduct a TNA?
You can conduct a TNA by performing these four steps:

  • Performance Gap Analysis

Performance gap analysis identifies performance gaps by comparing current and desired operational results and employee performance.

  • Root Cause Analysis

Root cause analysis determines possible causes of performance gaps (for example, lack of skills, capacity and motivation).

  • Needs Analysis

Needs analysis identifies the types of needs to address the root causes (for example, training, environment and consequences).

  • Recommendations

Recommendations include/suggest solutions (for example, redesigning of jobs, tools, training and communication).

After performing the TNA, Monica comes up with a plan to train the sales team personnel using a mix of ILT and online trainings that would span acrossthree months phase-wise:

  • Phase 1: For a week, all the sales team members would need to take up a series of online courses. This phase would provide an overview of the new products.
  • Phase 2: After the online trainings are done, the sales team members would attend instructor-led trainingsfor two months, followed by a field assignment of one month.

How to implement gamification in your online training?
Allen is an Instructional Design lead in an eLearningcompany. Lukas, who has been in business engagement with Allen’s company for a long time, approaches herto create an eLearning to train the sales executives on the Compliance polices. He wants her to deliver a course that would automatically induce the sales executives to take up the course. He does not want it to be like another normal eLearning as he has had a bad experience of similar compliance courses being taken indifferently in the past by the same learners. He wants to ensure that the sales executives take the course with fun. Upon enquiry, Allen comes to know that majority of the sales executives in his company are men and like to play soccer.
What do you think should Allen’sstrategy be to create acourse thatLukas wants?
Allen can create a gamified course using the theme of soccer, which is very close to the heart of the sales executives. Soccer being their passion, the gamified course will not fail to satisfy Lukas as well as the sales executives.
Let us learn more about gamification in online training.
Why gamification?
You should go for gamification if:

  • You want to make the course enjoyable and interactive
  • You want to create a learning experience that keeps the learners engaged immersively
  • You want to ensure that the learners retain the information for a long time
  • You want to engage your target audience with the same intensity, irrespective of their age groups
  • You want to create a course on complex subjects where you may not be able to avoid text heavy pages

How to gamify your online training?
To gamify the online courses, you must introduce elements that would simulate a game-like environment, such as:

  • Scores
  • Levels
  • Currency
  • Virtual gifts
  • Avatars
  • Obstacles
  • Awards
  • Failures to provoke the learners to try again

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