HRD Needs Assessment Meaning, Objectives, Levels

Levels of HRD Needs Assessment

Table of Contents:-

Meaning of HRD Needs Assessment

Assessing HRD needs/training needs assessment or HRD needs assessment is a process by which an organisation’s HRD needs are identified and articulated. Training needs assessment is the HRD’s and training processes’ starting point. With the help of HIRD needs assessment, HRD professionals learn where and what kinds of programmes or interventions are needed, who needs to be included in them, and whether there are currently roadblocks to their effectiveness. Thus, needs assessment is essential for an effective Human Resource Development (HRD) effort.

Definition of HRD Needs Assessment

According to Kaufman et al., “Need assessment can be defined as a process for identifying and prioritising gaps between current and desired results”.

According to Molenda, Pershing and Reigeluth, “Noed assessment can be defined as a method of finding out the nature and extent of performance problems and how they can be solved”.

Assessing HRD Needs

Assessing Human Resource Development (HRD) needs process helps organizations ensure they have all the skills, knowledge, and capabilities required to meet their strategic objectives.

Given below is a step-by-step approach to assessing HRD needs:

1. Identify Organizational Goals

The initial step is understanding the organization’s objectives, mission, and vision. It should be clear what objectives an organization aims to strategically achieve in the short term and long term.

2. Conduct a Gap Analysis

Identify the gaps between employees’ present and desired capabilities. Compare the workforce’s current and desired skills, knowledge, and capabilities. This comparison analysis enables organizations to understand the skill gap among employees and address it effectively to achieve organizational goals.

3. Stakeholder Consultation

Stakeholders, including executives, managers, employees, and HR personnel, should be engaged to understand the organization’s identified skill gaps and developmental needs. This can be swiftly performed through surveys, interviews, focus groups, workshops, and other methods.

4. Review Performance Data

Identify the areas where growth, improvement, or development is needed within the organization by performing performance appraisals, competency assessments, employee feedback, and any other relevant performance data.

5. Consider Industry Trends

To remain updated and prepared for future challenges, organizations must Stay informed about industry trends, technological advancements, changes in regulations, and other external factors. These factors influence the skills and competencies needed within the organization.

6. Utilize HR Metrics

Organizations can identify areas for improvement effectively by using HR metrics such as turnover rates, training effectiveness, succession planning data, and employee engagement scores, which help to enhance overall performance and productivity.

7. Assess Individual Needs

Conduct assessments to determine every employee’s developmental needs. This process involves evaluating employees’ skills, assessing personality traits, having career development discussions, and engaging in goal-setting activities.

8. Prioritize Needs

Prioritize HRD needs according to employees’ strategic importance, urgency, and feasibility. Some needs may require immediate attention due to their critical nature, while others can be addressed over a more extended period.

9. Develop an Action Plan

After identifying the HRD needs, develop a detailed action plan that clearly outlines specific initiatives, timelines, responsibilities, and resources required for successful implementation.

10. Monitor and Evaluate

Continuously monitor the effectiveness of Human Resource Development (HRD) interventions and evaluate their impact on the performance of an organization. Adjust the action plans as needed that are based on feedback and changing business requirements.

By following these steps, organizations can evaluate their HRD needs and effectively implement targeted interventions to develop HRD professionals and a talented workforce that drives organizational success.

Objectives of HRD Needs Assessment

Objectives for identifying HRD needs are as follows:

1) To identify performance requirements or needs within the organization to help in directing resources to the area of greatest need.

2) To enhance employee productivity.

3) To provide quality goods and services.

4) To fulfil the goals and objectives of the organization,

5) To determine the benchmark for the evaluation of HRD.

6) To identify the gap between the overall employee’s talents and skills required for effective current performance.

7) To reduce the cost and time of the HRD programme.

8) To align the HRD activities with the overall strategic plan of the organisation.

9) To boost the motivation of the participants.

10) To identify the working environment for HRD activity.

Levels of HRD Needs Assessment

There are three levels of HRD needs assessment, which are as follows:

    1. Task Analysis
    2. Person/Individual Analysis
    3. Organisational Analysis

Levels of HRD Needs Assessment

Task Analysis

Task analysis provides data about a job or a group of jobs and the knowledge, attitude, skills and abilities needed to achieve optimum performance. HRD need analysis at the operational level and focuses on the work that is being assigned to the employees. The job analyst gathers information on whether an employee understands the job. He gathers this information through technical interview, observation, psychological tests, questionnaire, etc. Today, jobs are dynamic and keep changing over time. Employees need to prepare for these changes. The job analyst also gathers information on the tasks that need to be done plus the tasks that will be required in the future. Based on the information collected, HRD needs assessment is done.

Purpose of Task Analysis

Task analysis is performed to determine.

1) The goals and objectives of learning.

2) The operational components of jobs, skills, learning goals or objectives, i.e., to describe what task performers do, how they perform a task or apply a skill and how they think before, during, and after learning.

3) What knowledge states (declarative, structural, and procedural knowledge) characterise a job or task?

4) Which tasks, skills, or goals ought to be taught, is, how to select learning outcomes that are appropriate for instructional development.

5) Which tasks are most important and have priority for a commitment of training resources?

6) The sequence in which tasks are performed and should be taught and learned.

7) How to select or design instructional strategies, activities and techniques to promote learning.

8) How to select appropriate learning environments and media.

9) How to construct performance assessments and evaluations.

Person/Individual Analysis

Person or individual analysis involves deciding which employees need to participate in training programmes. The information needed to make this decision can come from various sources. Regardless of the source of the information, it is essential to ensure that training is needed to address any gaps between an individual’s performance and desired outcomes.

Employees who are unhappy at work and not performing well might have the right qualifications but not be willing to use them. This highlights the essential points about person analysis and training effectiveness. In general, person analysis is a great tool to use to identify situations in which employees simply are not properly trained. However, it typically does not address issues of employee motivation or effort.

When employees are not motivated to perform tasks that they can perform, performance management rather than training is the necessary course of action. In these circumstances, the resources spent to train the person are not likely to result in a high pay-off; they will just increase the training costs.

Managers should also understand that when an employee is not performing well, the problem might not be a lack of motivation or a lack of skills. Rather, the person’s manager might not be communicating to the person what the organisation’s expectations are. As a result, the employee might not need training but rather might need to have his or her job responsibilities clarified.

Components of Individual Analysis

In whatever manner the data for person analysis is collected, an effective person analysis should consist of two components, which are as follows:

1) Summary Individual Analysis: Summary person analysis involves determining the overall success of individual employee performance.

2) Diagnostic Individual Analysis: Diagnostic person analysis tries to discover the reasons for an employee’s performance. Determine why results of individual employee’s behaviour occur, determine how an individual’s Knowledge, Skills, Abilities, and Other Characteristics (KSAOs), effort, and environmental factors combine to yield the summary individual analysis.

Together, the summary and diagnostic person analyses combine to determine who is performing the person analysis. Effective performers whereas analysis of performing successfully unsuccessfully. This may be the source for ideas on how ineffective performers can identify what interventions are needed. An effective person analysis should identify future developmental times as well.

Organisational Analysis

HRD’s assessment of the internal evaluation level focuses on strategic planning, business needs, and goals. It starts with the assessment internal environment of the organisation such as procedures, policies strengths and weaknesses, and the external environment such as opportunities and threats. After conducting the SWOT analysis, weaknesses can be addressed through training interventions, while strengths can be further enhanced with ongoing training. Threats can be mitigated by identifying areas where training is needed and opportunities can be exploited by balancing them against costs.

For this approach to be successful, the HR department of the company is required to be involved in strategic planning, In this planning, HR develops strategies to be sure that the employees in the organisation have the required Skills, Knowledge, and Attribution (KSAS) based on the future KSAs requirements at each level. Organisational analysis focuses on the strategies of the organisation, the resources in the organisation, the allocation of these resources, and the total internal environment.

Components of Organisational Analysis

According to Goldstein, an organisational analysis should identify:

1) Organisational Goals

Understanding the organisation’s goals and strategy is the starting point for the organisational analysis. Areas where the organisation is meeting its goals and areas where goals are not being met will be input for deciding improvement areas or potential problem areas. Further examination of the areas where goals are not being met will provide insight for training or any managerial intervention.

2) Organisational Resources

Awareness of the resources of the organisation and the allocation of resources is very useful for establishing the training needs. The amount of money available for such activities, facilities, materials on hand, and the expertise available within the organisation all go about to influence how training is conducted.

3) Organisation Climate

The HRD climate within the organisation is very important for the success of any training intervention. The climate may reveal the factors in the internal environment that may cause the problem. For example, lack of trust between members of the organisation, misunderstanding and non-cooperation, if prevalent in the organisation will not be conducive to effective training or transfer of training back to the job.

4) Environmental Constraints

These include legal, political, and social issues faced by the organisation. Technological changes, market competition, and economic conditions all have an impact on the training activities of an organisation. For example, staff reduction instead of cost-saving measures may propel training people to arrange training programmes for the retained staff to carry out the additional work of the retrenched workforce.

Thus, the organisational analysis identifies the organisation’s goals, resources, climate, and environmental constraints. This analysis will bring out where training and development effort is needed and also the organisational and environmental conditions that may affect the training effort. This analysis will also help in aligning the training effort with that of the organisation’s strategy and mission.

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