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However, understanding how to gain the most out of these programmes can be tricky.
At Warwick Conferences we understand the importance of the success of L&D programmes, so we have worked with the globally-renowned ROI Institute to create a tool which can be used to measure the impact of them. It estimates the return on investment (ROI), which indicates the monetary benefits in comparison to the cost of the programme. When estimating the ROI of your event there are eight factors to consider:
1. Event Facilities
Where the programme will be hosted can play a major role in how effective it is for delegates. Participating in training in the workplace, for example, can open up issues with concentration if people are pulled out of the sessions for calls or are distracted by emails coming through. This makes it much harder to maintain everyone’s attention and risks minimising the effectiveness. Holding L&D sessions externally can help increase focus, allowing delegates to reach their full potential while present.
2. Direct Reports
Turning attention to who is in attendance on training days will also determine the overall impact. Delegates responsible for other team members are in a more prominent position to return to work and share this knowledge with other colleagues, further expanding the reach of the programme. As such, inviting those with influence within an organisation increases the likelihood of positive change happening following the session.
3. Business Alignment
When hosting L&D programmes, planners will need to take into consideration the overarching company business objectives and whether the programme aligns with these. This will help to highlight how the training planned will drive results for the company. Activities which directly impact the success of the organisation will yield a much higher ROI than those which do not have the same level of alignment. Not only do these objectives need to be addressed ahead of running the programme, there should also be a way to measure the success of this with the use of KPIs and objectives.
4. Appropriate Solution
While factoring in business objectives during the design of the programme is key, so is ensuring the content planned is the most appropriate solution to driving business measures. Preparing pre course communications with participants to highlight how the activity will help to influence the business measure selected will clarify the reasoning for running the programme.
Additionally, it allows any concerns to be raised about the content of the programme in relation to the focus area of the business. This is a sure-fire way to reveal any potential gaps in the course and address them before the programme is live.
5. Setting Focuses
When delegates are invited to attend, there should be a clear outline of what the expected outcomes from the programme will be. Setting objectives for delegates ahead of any programme can highlight how they will be expected to implement the skills and development they have learned within the wider business.
Taking the time to set these out increases the chances of change and growth occurring as a result of the course, once it is complete. Those who go into the day knowing the aim of the session and how they are expected to react afterwards will have a clearer picture of how the training will impact the business. This creates a more driven workforce, willing to put this into practice.
6. Intended Audience
Inviting lots of delegates to attend the programme may feel like the best way to achieve success, however identifying those who gain most value from the course content will be most effective. For example, if there are a specific set of skills the training hones in on, it would be most beneficial to those who have a need to use this skillset.
Carefully forming a programme which adds value to the chosen audience is a far more efficient use of time so that those on the course can learn how best to apply the new knowledge they have acquired.
7. Perceived Value
The main aim of running these programmes with colleagues is to provide them with content which can be utilised in their day-to-day working life. Therefore, setting objectives is an important factor in the success of these programmes as research demonstrates that clearly outlining these will determine the overall programme value.
Those aware of the benefits of attending are far more likely to engage and enjoy themselves, achieving a greater ROI score.
8. Manager Support
It’s not just the delegates attending who need to be made aware of the advantages of completing these L&D programmes. Having managerial support with this can make all the difference, so keeping managers on board with the objectives is key as this is the biggest influencer for the application and impact of the programme.
Involving managers in conversations right from the start will give them a better understanding of the purpose of the programme and what actions they can take to assist those attending it. It will also give them the opportunity to set out steps with those they are responsible for, to monitor the success of the programme in relation to the specific area of development.
Spending time during your programme planning stages to consider these eight factors will ensure your delivered programmes will be memorable and effective. With the end goal being to increase the ROI of these programmes, tailoring them to suit the specific objectives of the business is vital.
To understand the ROI for your event, Warwick Conferences has created the ROI Estimator. Designed to help event organisers to see the impact their events have on the business, it provides useful tips on how to gain more value from L&D programmes, if necessary. The tool takes five minutes to complete, but offers valuable expert insight from the world-renowned ROI Institute.
Gail has over 20 years of experience within the events services industry at Warwick Conferences, developing strong business relationships through a consultative sales approach. Primarily specialising in the automotive, construction, logistics and manufacturing sectors.
Gail dot Tomlinson-Short at warwick dot ac dot uk