What Is a Training Gap Analysis?

Esther Ejim

Training gap analysis is a measurement of the level of skills possessed by employees at any given moment in relation to the optimal level of skills they need for optimal productivity. The reason for an assessment of a training gap is to help organizations discover inconsistencies within the employee output they currently have. Gaining an idea of what type of skills their employees have will help these organizations know how to tackle the issue of further training for workers.

The assessment of a training gap helps organizations discover current inconsistencies in employee output.
The assessment of a training gap helps organizations discover current inconsistencies in employee output.

Any company with employees who do not have the highest level of skills to perform their required duties will find themselves at a disadvantage. This aspect is of great importance in a competitive market where every company is trying to outdo the other in every area, including productivity. The methods for initiating and conducting a training gap analysis vary among organizations. Smaller companies with only a few employees may conduct a training gap assessment simply by observing their employees. For example, the owner or manager of a small grocery store with only three employees may easily monitor his or her employees to find out if they are performing optimally.

Such a task will be harder for the management of a large retail store with more than 50 employees in one branch alone. The training gap analysis for the employees in such a big organization may be done through the use of questionnaires or surveys. Employees may be asked to answer questions, and they may then be individually rated based on the analysis of their answers. They may be rated on a scale of one to 10 based on the survey.

Organizations generally have the discretion to decide at what times to initiate a training gap analysis. This may be done when there is a lag in production or if the qualities of products or services fall below the expected levels. When companies are faced with recalls on their products, they may decide to conduct a training gap analysis as part of their investigations into the reason why the defective product managed to slip through the different departments and into the general public. For example, a company that produces high chairs for babies and toddlers may have to recall a certain batch of its products due to a risk for tipping over and injuring young children. The company may conduct investigations into how the product became defective and also conduct a training gap assessment to find out if all of the employees were working at their best optimally. Such an assessment might be a precursor to a shakeup or restructuring of the company.

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