The Ultimate Corporate Training Course Content Development Checklist
Benjamin Franklin once wrote, "By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail."
The same can be said when referring to the importance of planning the delivery and implementation of corporate training programs and events.
Although there are numerous considerations to make to ensure you achieve your company's training goals, the very first step in the planning process is developing useful, relevant and engaging content geared toward adult learning styles.
But where do you start? More often than not, the course content you will need to develop for your learners is wholly unique to your organization. Rarely is there an off-the-shelf content solution that will suit all of the needs, skill requirements and knowledge that your learners will require. Learning is always much more meaningful and applicable when content speaks to actual use case scenarios, company culture and customized to unique situations of a department and organization.
Today, nearly all L&D professionals are tasked with developing a strategic approach for training programs covering a variety of modalities—such as instructor-led, eLearning, virtual, cloud-based, social, hands-on, hybrid and blended.
Experts recommend that along every step of the training course content development process that you employ a team-based approach that utilizes brainstorming—from compiling topics for a learning deliverable, crafting creative ways to engage learners, or conceptualizing strategies for performance support—idea generation through brainstorming will stimulate the content development process.
Another key aspect of course content development is determining the proper metrics to measure which learning methods are working best for your organization. According to Caveo Learning, "Whether it is improving the efficiency of our learning organization, the effectiveness of our learning solutions, alignment to our stakeholders, or the contribution our interventions have on the strategic business goals of the organization, metrics play a critical role in influencing the value we bring to our organizations and, almost more critically, the credibility of L&D in the eyes of external stakeholders and the C-suite."
Statistics show there has been a steady industry trend upward in the number of companies outsourcing its learning and development to a training solutions partner. But whether you develop your learning content in-house or you choose an outsourcing partner to customize a training program, the step-by-step process remains essentially the same if you are to launch and execute an effective program or event.
Here are six key steps that experts recommend should be taken when developing training course content:
- Conduct Needs Assessment and Performance Analysis: Evaluate what knowledge transfer is desired based on current skill performance indicators and the productivity of the learning population.
- Define Measurable Performance and Training Objectives: Determine what your key training goals are and how to measure these objectives using the "SMART" goal-setting paradigm: Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Time-bound.
- Design and Develop Training Materials: Direct your in-house or outsourced course content development team to produce all necessary training materials, including digital, paper and any other media assets to augment the learning experience.
- Implement Initiatives and Learning Solutions: After final content is approved, direct and collaborate with all internal stakeholders on timing, messaging and learning goals that will be implemented throughout your organization.
- Deliver Training, Presentations, and Workshops: Roll out the training program in an efficient manner that is aligned with your overall training goals.
- Evaluate the Effectiveness of Learning Solutions: Post-training, assess and measure through surveys, stakeholder feedback and performance evaluations the effectiveness of the program.
In order to help you start the training planning process properly and prevent you from failing to achieve your overall corporate training goals, we have broken down the development of course content into a six-point graphical checklist—from conducting a training needs assessment to evaluating the effectiveness of your content—to help you better manage the creation, delivery and measurement of your corporate training course content program.
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