TRAINING NEEDS ASSESSMENT TOOL







PURPOSE:    The TRAINING NEEDS ASSESSMENT TOOL (T-NAT) will provide you with information about your training needs in your job. The T-NAT process is a series of sequential steps that allow you to compare what you know or can do (ABILITY LEVEL) with what you need to know or do on your job (JOB NEED LEVEL).

PROCESS:    The steps to using the T-NAT are listed below.
                        PART I : SKILL/KNOWLEDGE LISTING

                        PART II: RATING ABILITY LEVEL and JOB NEED LEVEL

                        PART III: COMPLETING THE T-NAT
PART IV: INTERPRETING THE T-NAT
                        PART V: Preparing your TRAINING ACTION PLAN









PART I: SKILL/KNOWLEDGE LISTING                     PART II: RATINGS

Instructions: In the spaces below, list the                             Instructions: Using the skill/knowledge Skills/knowledge’s that are required on                                  areas you have listed in Part I and the
Your job.                                                                                 Rating scales provided to the right,
Determine your number rating for both ABILITY LEVEL and JOB NEED LEVEL for each item in Part I
 
NUMBER                      SKILL/KNOWLEDGE                                             ABILITY LEVEL                    JOB NEED
                                                     LIST                                                                 RATING                                LEVEL RATING

1.











2.











3.











4.











5.











6.











7.











8.











9.











10.











11.











12.











13.






I.                                                                                                                                                                               II.



PART III: COMPLETING THE T-NAT

Instructions:- Using the ratings from part II for ABILITY LEVEL and JOB NEED LEVEL. Plot the intersection of those points on the grid below for each of the SKILL/KNOWLEDGE areas listed. As you plot each point on the grid, label it with its identifying SKILL/KNOWLEDGE number from PART I.

TRAINING NEEDS ASSESSMENT TOOL




MODERATE
 

HIGH
 
9
      
 8

        7
































6

        5

       4































LOW
 
3

         2

         1

0































LOW
 
                                                                     1              2                               4              5                              7             8

HIGH
 

MODERATE
JOB NEED LEVEL
 
0                                                3                                              6                                           9




III.



PART V: TRAINING ACTION PLAN:

Instructions: In the sections below, list your training needs as indicated by your T-NAT interpretation grid from part IV. List your most critical training needs first, your moderate training needs next, and areas you wish to pursue for your career growth last. For each item listed, identify activities you will complete to develop your skill/knowledge and estimate a completion date for each activity listed.


Refer to the completed example in the shaded area below for guidance in completing your personal training action plan

Urgency codes are:  C = Critical;       M = Moderate;            CG = Career Growth

URGENCY
CODE
SKILL/KNOWLEDGE
NUMBER
TRAINING ACTIVITY
(Brief description of how training need will be met.)
EST. DATE OF COMPLETION

C
3
Prepare
budget requests
a.      Attend “Budget Training” course
b.      Assist manager to prepare request
c.       Read manual section 1 – 1103 “Budget”
a.      Next fall
b.      April
c.       Next week


















































 V.

RATING SCALE


The scale and defining “Indicators” below will help you to rate your ABILITY LEVEL and the JOB NEED LEVEL for each area listed in Part I. Enter your numerical ratings in spaces provided under Part II

ABILITY LEVEL


Rate your level of ability in each skill/knowledge area using scale and “Indicators” below.





 

                  1                 2                                   4               5                                 7                 8                        0                                         3                                          6                                        9

LOW
ABILITY
MODERATE
ABILITY
HIGH
ABILITY
·         Seen by others as a learner/trainee.
·         Requires constant supervision, always asking others for help.
·         Feel anxious, highly dissatisfied, frustrated with self.
·         Work returned frequently for correction / improvement high error rate
·         Seen by others as adequately skilled.
·         Require some supervision but becoming increasingly independent.
·         Feed o.k but not terrific about self.

·         Revisions required are generally minor
·         Seen by others as an expert/ could train others
·         Requires no supervision


·         Highly satisfied with self


·         Work usually accepted with no revision / correction required


JOB NEED LEVEL


Rate level of job need for each skill/knowledge area using scale and “Indicators” below

 

                 1                 2                                   4               5                                 7                 8                       0                                         3                                          6                                        9                                        
LOW
JOB NEED
MODERATE
JOB NEED
HIGH
JOB NEED
·         The skill / knowledge is seldom used on the job
·         The skill / knowledge is not a routine / regular / integral /essential part of the job

·         The application of the skill / knowledge is a rarely visible part of the job
·         The application of the skill / knowledge is of little importance of the organisation
·         The skill / knowledge is occasionally used on the job
·         The application of the skill / knowledge enhances performance but is not essential / required
·         The application of skill / knowledge is sometimes visible
·         The application of the skill / knowledge is of some importance to the organisation
·         The skill / knowledge is frequently used on the job
·         The skill / knowledge is a routing / regular / integral / essential part of the job

·         The application of the skill / knowledge is a highly visible part of the job
·         The application of the skill / knowledge is of major importance to the organisation


PART IV:- INTERPRETING THE T-NAT

Instructions

Compare your completed T-NAT from part III to the diagram below. Observe where the points you plotted on your T-NAT lie in relation to the shaded areas below. (Note:- you may find it useful to re-plot your T-NAT points on the grid below) The meaning of each shaded areas is as follows.


AREA OF CRITICAL TRAINING NEED


JOB NEED LEVEL is high and ABILITY LEVEL is low. Because the need for the skill / knowledge on the job is much higher than the level of ability, a critical training need is indicated.


AREA OF MODERATE TRAINING NEED


ABILITY LEVEL and JOB NEED LEVEL are not greatly out of line with one another. This may indicate a training need. But it is probably less vital than those in the area of critical training need.


AREA OF ADEQUATE SKILL / KNOWLEDGE

ABILITY LEVEL and JOB NEED LEVEL generally match. This indicates no training is required to be able to do the job adequately

Reading: Effectiveness of Training & Development Questionnaire 

AREA OF CAREER GROWTH

Because ABILITY LEVEL is at least equal to, if not greater than JOB NEED LEVEL. This indicates that no training in this skill/knowledge area is required for the job. It may indicate an area for career growth.
 




MODERATE
 

HIGH
 
9
      
 8

        7
































6

        5

       4































LOW
 
3

         2

         1

0































LOW
 
                                                                     1              2                               4              5                              7             8

HIGH
 

MODERATE
JOB NEED LEVEL
 
0                                                3                                              6                                           9



Organisation Design and Development

Training Needs Assessment Tool ( T-NAT ) Trainer Guide

Trainer Guide by Rollin Glaser


The Training Needs Assessment Tool (T-NAT) is precisely what its name implies – a vehicle for analysing and documenting an individual’s training requirements as compared to his or her present knowledge or skill level for performing a specific job. The goal of the analysis is to identify individuals training needs and develop an action plan for satisfying those needs. The T-NAT provides an easily understood format that allows managers and employees to compare their perceptions and go on to develop a priority list of training activities.

History of Development

It was felt that a simple document that could be used by managers and employees to structure the process would ensure that the training was directly related to the incumbent’s needs and would provide a fail-safe means of follow-up. The T-NAT was organised in a step-by-step format so that the identification of training needs and training activities could be completed more accurately and quickly. T-NAT automatically structures the training relationship between bosses and employees in a way that contributes to a satisfying working relationship among the concerned parties.

Since 1981 more than 10,000 supervisors and managers have used T-NAT to guide their on-the-job training relationship. Some of the uses include:

· Helping bosses and employees to pinpoint weaker skill/knowledge areas and develop individual training plans.
· Assessing the career development needs of people undergoing job retraining and placement.
· Developing an orientation program for new employees.
· Assisting counsellors to select from a menu of training seminars and workshops offered within the context of a broader curriculum.
· Identifying the general training needs of a specific employee classification such as supervisory personnel.
· Documenting training budget requests.
· Facilitating the creation of a priority list of developmental activities following performance appraisal.
· Guiding the mission, goals and strategy development for large training departments.


General Features of T-NAT

The effectiveness of T-NAT is found partly in its simplicity. Here are some of its general features that training and development personnel and line managers find attractive:

· Can be used assess the training needs perceptions of individuals, groups or entire organisations.
· Easy to understand; easy to administer; easy to monitor
· Because of the “grid-like” features, it automatically generates a priority listing of skill/knowledge deficiencies.
· Facilitates discussion between bosses and employees.
· Results in a training action plan that anyone can review.
· Presents data in a form that may be collected and summarised easily
· Graphic display leads to accurate and quick interpretation of the data.
· Allows for easy sharing and comparison of boss and employee perceptions.
· Provides a file copy for record-keeping purposes.
· Relates training activities to specific skill/knowledge needs.

 How the T-NAT is Constructed

 The T-NAT has been divided into five distinct parts. The sequencing of these parts provides a logical approach to identifying training needs and training activities.

Part I  :           Skill/Knowledge Listing

Part II :          Rating Ability Level and Job Need Level.

Part III:          Completing the T-NAT

Part IV:          Interpreting the T-NAT

Part V:           Preparing Your Training Action Plan

Part I:             Skill/Knowledge Listing

 The beginning point for any analysis of training needs is an identification of what actually is required to perform a specific job. And up-to-date, comprehensive job description may or may not be available. If one is available, it could be used as a reference. If none is available, as it often the case, the job incumbent and/or his/her manager can develop the list through discussion.

1.      The list required job skill/knowledge asks for brief statements. The format deliberately discourages detailed descriptions of job duties. The purpose of Part I is an uncomplicated identification of skill/knowledge. The more succinct, the better. For example, “Prepare monthly audit” or “maintain organised tool room” are sample description for the purpose of T-NAT.

2.      The skill/knowledge list may be prepared in a number of different ways: the employee develops the list on his/her own; the employee develops the list with the managers input; the employee and the manager jointly prepare the list; the manager develops the list on his/her own. The decision as to who will be involved will probably depend on the employee’s experience and training for the job under consideration. More experienced employees can usually prepare the list on their own; those with less experience will need some assistance from their managers.
3.      You will note that twelve spaces are provided for the skills/knowledge required. Experience in using T-NAT shows that a longer list causes people to feel overwhelmed and possibly discouraged. You could of course, add more items if it were necessary. Twelve items are adequate for most jobs.

 Part II : Rating Ability Level and Job Need Level.

 In this section the job incumbent and/or the boss are being asked two questions. What is the present ability level of the job incumbent for each skill/knowledge listed in Part I?. What is the job need level required for satisfactory performance of each skill/knowledge?. The answers to these questions will reveal a discrepancy (training will be required) or a match (no training will be required)

1.      Separate rating scales for Ability Level and Job Need Level are to the right of the boxes where the information is to be recorded.
2.      Ratings are based on a numerical scale from 0 to 9 with 0 being the lowest possible rating and 9 the highest
3.      Each skill/knowledge is rated on both dimensions
4.      Ability Level indicators include:
a)      How the job incumbent is viewed by others
Trainee                                    expert

b)      How much supervision is required
Constant                                       none

c)      How the job incumbent feels about his/her skills
Dissatisfied                                      satisfied
 

d)     How often errors are made
Frequently                                      rarely
 

5.      Job Need Level indicators include:

a)      How often the skill/knowledge is used on the job
Seldom                                        frequently

b)      How essential a part of the job is the skill/knowledge
Not essential                                           essential

c)      How “visible” is the use of the skill/knowledge
Rarely visible                                         highly visible

d)     How important the skill/knowledge is to the organisation
Very little importance                                           very important


Part III: Completing the T-NAT

A grid combining the Ability Level and Job Need Level dimensions has been constructed. (The Ability Need Level is placed on the vertical axis. The Job Need Level is on the horizontal axis). The purpose of the grid (T-NAT) is to aid in interpretation of the ratings assigned to each skill/knowledge.

Reading: Technology Impact on Human Resources

The ratings for each Ability Level and Job Need Level would be plotted as shown below. Assume that Ability = 2 and Job Need = 7. The grid would be marked at the intersection of those two points. It should then be labelled with its identifying skill/knowledge number from Part I. The number is sufficient to identify the skill/Knowledge item being plotted




MODERATE
 

HIGH
 
9
      
 8

        7
































6

        5

       4































LOW
 
3

         2

         1

0









1






















LOW
 
                                                                     1              2                               4              5                              7             8

HIGH
 

MODERATE
JOB NEED LEVEL
 
0                                                3                                              6                                           9





The ratings for each skill/knowledge listed in Part I would be plotted similarly on the T-NAT, resulting in up to twelve points in various parts of the T-NAT

Part IV: Interpreting the T-NAT

Part IV is located on the back side of the instrument. The purpose of this section is to provide a graphic display of the combined Ability and Job Need scores.


1. Based on the premise that areas where Ability (skill/knowledge) is perceived as low and Job Need is perceived as relatively higher a training need exists. The lower the Ability Level and the higher the Job Need Level, the more critical the training need (unless other organisational considerations exists).

2. Darker shaded areas of the interpretation grid indicate more critical training needs. (Darker areas are where Job Need Level is highest and Ability Level is lowest)

3. Areas where Job Need is low and Ability Level is high (light-colored area) may be considered areas for future career development.

4. The diagonal band across the middle of the grid is the zone where the Ability Level and Job Need Level are about equal.

5. Using our previous example: and Ability Level of 2 and a Job Need Level of 7 would fall into the darkest portion of the T-NAT


9
      
 8

        7
































6

        5

       4































LOW
 
3

         2

         1

0































LOW
 
                                                                     1              2                               4              5                              7             8

HIGH
 

MODERATE
JOB NEED LEVEL
 
0                                                3                                              6                                           9






Depending on the ratings, the points may be clustered in one section of the grid of scattered. If most of the points are clustered in the darker section of the grid, extensive training needs would be indicated. If points are clustered in the upper left part of the grid, the manager may be dealing with an employee who should be considered for promotion or transfer to a position where the skill/knowledge may be utilized.

Part V: Preparing Your Training Action Plan

Part V represents the most important product of this process. It is the natural result of identifying the skill/knowledge requirements of a given job and rating the incumbent’s current ability. You will note that the Action Plan is straightforward and brief. The intent of this section is to develop in a minimum amount of time a priority listing of the training activities that will be undertaken to correct the skill/knowledge deficiencies.

1. Note that there is space for the incumbent’s name and date of plan preparation. Although this may be record on the front of the T-NAT, the Action Plan might become separated from the rest of the instrument.

2. The plan format is divided into four columns. The shaded area provides a model for completing the plan.



URGENCY
CODE
SKILL/KNOWLEDGE
NUMBER
TRAINING ACTIVITY
(Brief description of how training need will be met.)
EST. DATE OF COMPLETION

C
3
Prepare
budget requests
a)      Attend “Budget Training” course
b)      Assist manager to prepare request
c)      Read manual section 1 – 1103 Budgets
a)      Next fall
b)      April
c)      Next week








a) The Urgency Code can be found in Part IV.

C = Critical Training Need

M = Moderate Training Need

CG = Career Growth

b) The skill/knowledge Number can be found in Part I. It is helpful but not necessary to rewrite the skill/knowledge.

c) The Training Activity should be briefly, but accurately described. “Hold a meeting” may be insufficient to meet a particular training need.

d) The Estimated Date of Completion simply pins down the training commitment and increases the likelihood that the training will actually take place.

How to Use the T-NAT – Step by Step

The following discussion describes how a manager might use the T-NAT with an employee. Let us begin by assuming that the manager is conscientious trainer and developer of his/her people. Like most managers, he/she is extremely busy during the typical work day and despite good intentions, sometimes fails to provide all of the help he/she is capable of providing. The manager has decided to use the T-NAT for a more through identification of his/her employee’s training needs and to prepare a listing of needed training activities.

As a preliminary step the manager needs to decide on the degree of his/her involvement in Parts I and II. In this case the manager decides on jointly completing the entire T-NAT with his/her employee.

Step 1

The manager gives the T-NAT to the employee a few days in advance of their meeting. He/she briefly describes the purpose of the meeting and how the T-NAT will facilitate their discussion of the employee’s training requirements during the coming year. The manager requests that the employee complete Part I to the best of his/her ability and bring it to the meeting.

Reading: Training need analysis methods

The employee completes Part I, preparing a list that looks like the one on the following page. (His/her job is manager in a shoe department)

The meeting between the manager and the employee will begin with a review of the employee’s list of skills/knowledge required by the job. The discussion of the list could produce some modifications deletions, or additions. When the discussion of Part I is completed, the result should be agreement between the boss and employee that this is the work to be handled by the employee




PART I: SKILL/KNOWLEDGE LISTING

Instructions: In the spaces below, list the skills/knowledges that are required on your job.
SKILL/KNOWLEDGE
NUMBER                                         LIST
1. Plan work of department

2. Hire sales personnel

3. Train sales personnel

4. Maintain payroll records

5. Recorder merchandise

6. Monitor EED compliance

7. Know merchandise features

8. Supervise price changes

9. Control shortage

10. Supervise promotional activities

11.

12.



Step 2

When the list is completed to the satisfaction of both parties, a joint rating of the Ability Level and the Job Need Level for each item will be undertaken. Of course, the manger may prefer to complete this rating on his/her own. In this example, however, the rating is handled during the discussion.

The manager begins by saying,” Let’s begin with your assessment of your current Ability and the Job Need Level for each skill/knowledge. Be as honest as you can in rating your ability. I can help with my experience of the Job Need Level”.

The first portion of the list that is evaluated looks like this:

Part II : Ratings

Instructions: Using the skill/knowledge areas you have listed in Part I and the rating scales provided to the right, determine your number rating for both ABILITY LEVEL and JOB NEED LEVEL for each item in Part I.
ABILITY
LEVEL
RATING

JOB NEED
LEVEL
RATING

4


2




2


5




3


6




6

6




1


9



Step 3

After the ratings have been agreed upon, the employee plots the points on the T-NAT. The result looks like this:





MODERATE
 

HIGH
 
9
      
 8

        7





























         4



6

        5

       4













         1














         3




LOW
 
3

         2

         1

0






         2














        5











LOW
 
                                                                     1              2                               4              5                              7             8

HIGH
 

MODERATE
JOB NEED LEVEL
 
0                                                3                                              6                                           9





Step 4


Jointly compare the plotted scores to the diagram in Part IV of the instrument

Skill/Knowledge Number 1 = area of career growth

Skill/Knowledge Number 2 = area of moderate training need

Skill/Knowledge Number 3 = borderline area of critical training need

Skill/Knowledge Number 4 = area of adequate skill/knowledge

Skill/Knowledge Number 5 = area of critical training need

This interpretation should be refined further through discussion.



Step 5

The final step in the T-NAT process is preparation of a Training Action Plan. Based on the training needs uncovered in Step 4, the Training Action Plan will look something like this:

URGENCY
CODE
SKILL/KNOWLEDGE
NUMBER
TRAINING ACTIVITY
(Brief description of how training need will be met.)
EST. DATE OF COMPLETION

C
3
Prepare
budget requests
a)      Attend “Budget Training” course
b)      Assist manager to prepare request
c)      Read manual section 1 – 1103 “Budget”
a)      Next fall
b)      April
c)      Next week


M
2
Hire sales
Personal
a)      Critique several new hirings
b)      Attend outside interviewing skills seminar
c)      Study policy manual
a)      Next90 days
b)      Next fall
c)      Next week


C
3
Train sales
Personal
a)      Attend train-the-trainer session
b)      Read appropriate company materials
a)      Spring
b)      March


M
4
Maintain
Payroll
a)      Review appropriate policy manual sections
b)      Receive coaching from payroll supervisor
a)      Next week
b)      April


C
5
Recorder
merchandise
a)      Attend company sponsored seminar
b)      OJT from manager
a)      June
b)      Fall

































  



Variations on the Use of the T-NAT

The following variations in using the T-NAT have been tried successfully in various organisations.



Peer Validation


The results of a T-NAT discussion may be validated with a trusted peer of colleague. If time is available, a peer/colleague may independently complete the first four parts of the T-NAT using the same skill/knowledge list. Results may then the compared and adjustments may be made prior to preparing the Training Action Plan


Manager and Employee Assessments


Manager and employees may independently complete the T-NAT. Results would be compared and negotiated. Both should work from the same skill/knowledge list.



Selecting Training from a Comprehensive Curriculum.


The T-NAT may be used to identify individual tracks or paths through a larger, more generic training program. It can help to select specific workshops to attend within a larger event or conference.


Other Variations


1. Skill/Knowledge areas may be “pre-defined” via a duty statement, job description, or a task analysis

2. The Job Need Level ratings may be pre-defined by a workgroup or by the assessee’s supervisor

3. Individual assessments may be collated and analysed to reveal group trends or weak areas.

4. Individual and group training needs may be collated and analysed to yield organisation-wide training information for human resource planning and budgeting processes.


Cautions and Considerations


The following cautions and considerations should be borne in mind when using the T-NAT

1. The T-NAT is not designed as a performance evaluation instrument. Only two variables are assessed. Performance is a product of many variables including the availability of resources to do a given job, quality of supervision, working conditions, work design, willingness and motivation of the assessee, as well as Ability Level and Job Need Level.

2. The best results are achieved when the process is facilitated by a trained instructor, supervisor, or facilitator.

3. A periodic review of the T-NAT is invaluable for ensuring that the skills/knowledge are developed. The T-NAT should be redone if an individual changes jobs or a change to a given job occurs. All individuals affected by the change to the job should be reassessed.

4. The best time to complete a T-NAT is following a performance appraisal discussion or during the orientation of a new employee by a manager or supervisor.

5. The T-NAT is not appropriate for some kinds of organisational needs assessments where data about organisational operating problems is desired. In such cases an organisation development oriented survey or other such intervention is needed.
TRAINING NEEDS ASSESSMENT TOOL TRAINING  NEEDS  ASSESSMENT TOOL Reviewed by Janet D'Suza on June 20, 2018 Rating: 5

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