Workforce.com

Are Training Departments Becoming Obsolete?

November 16, 2011

Dear Ruminating:

Traditional training departments probably are becoming somewhat obsolete. The actual provision of training increasingly is being outsourced to vendors or handled by online service providers. As a result, the number of trainers that companies need has diminished greatly.

Further, automated systems now keep track of training provision, attendance, evaluations and other human resources functions. Some of these systems even map training information directly onto performance evaluations through the use of competency models. Finally, most companies seem to have cut way back on training, at least when compared with previous decades. They expect new hires to come into the organization already trained and ready to work.

There is one aspect of training that is growing: the tasks associated with being a chief learning officer. These duties include planning how your employees' development experiences, along with training programs, could be used to meet the demands for talent in the future. But it does not take very many people to carry out these strategic functions, even in large organizations.

SOURCE: Peter Cappelli, Center for Human Resources, Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia

LEARN MORE: Please read a Dear Workforce article that discusses the advantage of integrating trainers into business units.

The information contained in this article is intended to provide useful information on the topic covered, but should not be construed as legal advice or a legal opinion. Also remember that state laws may differ from the federal law.