Independent training companies came under the spotlight at the recent CII Conference. Waltham Pitglow explains the dangers of their 'tick-box' approach to recommended training
At the CII conference last week the hottest topic of discussion among the training specialists attending was training needs analysis.A particular story that came from a broker struck me as a very healthy warning that readers might benefit from. The broker had allowed his staff to undergo a 'tick-box' training need analysis by a training firm. The firm's trainers had recommended a raft of training at fairly substantial cost.The point that the broker made was that perhaps there is something of a conflict of interest if the training company, whose job is the selling of training, is undertaking such an analysis.The reality is of course that independent analysis tools are available via the likes of BrokerASSESS. So as far a technical knowledge and understanding is concerned, brokers should be able to measure gaps in knowledge and choose how to fill those gaps, often without the cost of what could be over-expensive external training.To some extent the better training companies are changing their tune on this question of who (or what system) should undertake the needs analysis. We as a firm are looking more and more at the results of independent or in-house knowledge assessments before recommending training programmes.But that of course is only half the problem and this was highlighted by the FSA presentation on training and competence at the CII conference.A delegate asked the FSA panel: "Does the FSA really mean 'training' when it uses the word or does it accept that the more modern reference to 'learning' (which includes training) is the more ideal word." The response was the correct one in that the FSA, like many others, uses the word 'training' as a generic word to encompass all forms of learning.
Learning points that arose
What the experts said