Expanding the Kirkpatrick Evaluation Model-Towards more Efficient Training in the IT Sector

Expanding the Kirkpatrick Evaluation Model-Towards more Efficient Training in the IT Sector

Neetima Agarwal (Jaypee Business School, Jaypee Institute of Information Technology, Noida, India), Neerja Pande (Indian Institute of Management, Lucknow, India) and Vandana Ahuja (Jaypee Business School, Jaypee Institute of Information Technology, Noida, India)
DOI: 10.4018/ijhcitp.2014100102
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Abstract

The purpose of this paper is to investigate how the Kirkpatrick Learning Evaluation Model (1950) can be augmented to make it more credible and successful evaluation parameter in the changing times. Since the advent of Information Technology industry the rigid structures of organizations are replaced by the Flat/Matrix structures, removing the bars of time and place. This paper is an attempt to include three gaps identified in the Kirkpatrick Model, Training motivation, Organization citizenship behaviour and the Assessment of both the individual and the Organization simultaneously. Through co-relation and regression analysis these gaps were tested on the data obtained from 461 employees. The data support the various relationships to be included in Kirkpatrick Model and it identifies that for an effective training program it's essential to perform both pre-training and post-training analysis using the four parameters of Kirkpatrick Model viz. Reaction (changed to Motivation), Learning, Behaviour (or Performance) and Results.
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Introduction

Training and Development activities are primarily focused to codicil the three important determinants of any organization viz. Individual, Group and the Organization itself (Aasheim, 2009). The strength of any organization depends upon the competitiveness, robustness, readiness and effectuations of these determinants (Russell, Terborg, & Powers, 1985). Training activities are just not an investment done to make the workforce accomplish the given task rather this is a planned intervention focused and formulated to develop a kind of ‘citizenship’ behaviour within the individuals for the organization they are working with.

‘Organization Citizenship Behaviour (OCB)’ is one of the most twitted phrase now-a-days and gaining momentums (Turnipseed, 1996). It is defined as the behaviour that goes beyond the basic requirements of the job; people are not just abided by the laws of the organization rather they have accepted the work and the organization willingly and continuously working to make it bigger, outstanding and profitable (Schnake & Dumler, Levels of measurement and analysis issues in organizational citizenship behaviour research, 2003). This kind of behaviour cannot be trained through any program rather the genesis of this behaviour is inside people and their organizations.

Training is an external attempt to modify the existing behaviour of the human capital (Campbell & Kuncel, 2001). But, it fails if the intrinsic motivation is lacking in the people (Facteau, Dobbins, Russell, Ladd, & Kudisch, 1995). People connect with their surroundings and accept them if they find their vested interest safe (Wahba & Bridwell, 1976). Training effectiveness is the sum total of ‘Training Validation’ and ‘Training Evaluation’ (Dumais, Platt, Heckerman, & Sahami, 1998). Where, Training Validation is an assessment of whether training has achieved its laid down objectives and Training Evaluation is the measurement of the total effects of Training Program.

Donald Kirkpatrick, in 1950 has given Four levels Training Model to analyze the effectiveness and impact of training programs (Kirkpatrick, 1975). According to this model, the outcome of the training can be measured at four levels viz. Reaction, Learning, Behaviour and Result respectively (Bates, 2004). A successful training program gives a better result on the expectations made (Goldstein & Ford, 2002). This is one of the most successful models to evaluate the training programs till date (Alliger & Janak, 1989). The main strength of the Kirkpatrick Model is the focus on the change in behavioural outcomes of the learners involved in the training program. However, the model does not consider the measurement of critical areas before the training takes place such as: a) Motivation b) Organization Citizenship Behaviour c) Individual’s & Organization’s SWOT analysis.

Measuring only the outcomes of the training activities, in the form of ‘Declarative knowledge’, ‘Training Transferred’ to work, ‘Training Maintenance’ for a longer period of time (Chiaburu & Teklab, 2005) can only evaluate the success or failure of training program, but it will fail to assess the real Return on Expectations (ROE) (Wang, Dou, & Li, 2002) (Kaufman & Keller, 1994). For a successful ROE it is important to commence the evaluation process even before the people are subjected to various training programs (Alvarez, Salas, & Garofano, 2004). The pre-analysis of the employees and their organizations will help to justify the expectations even before the training activities are scheduled. So, this becomes the pre-requisite to carefully analyse the current skill set, behaviour of the employees, vision of the organization, challenges and the external competition before scheduling any training programs (Ghodsian, Bjork, & Benjamin, 1997). Including, the concept of OCB can help to even calculate the unexpected behaviour of the employees, which affects the ROE and can make the training programs more acceptable, worthwhile and effective.

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