Why examine transfer?
Training is designed to achieve a business objective; it can be anything from learning to use a new HR system to becoming a better sales person. The first levels of evaluation do not help examine fully if you've met your objectives. The "happy sheet" tells you what the participants on your program thought of it, and the "test" tells you whether they understood your content and could use it on the day.
The trouble is that "on the day" often fails to translate into real life performance. Because of the practicalities of corporate life, it's rare for someone to leave the learning environment and rush back into the workplace and put that material into practice. More likely there will be a break between the end of training and actually using the knowledge / skills gained.
Which means that all too often, people forget what they learned, or forget to even attempt to implement their new skill set at all. Therefore the investment in the training process is lost, or minimized without further support.
To determine whether your event was effective you need to measure how much of the learning has been put into practice.
What to look for?
A lot depends on the type of course you've delivered – for a computer skills course (for example), you should be able to glean plenty of information by examining the end product of user interactions, error logs, reports of problems from departments, etc.
In the case of a sales skills course, you'll need to develop an observation document to demonstrate whether techniques are put into practice on sales calls. And so on.
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Sourced from by Nick Kellingley