The paper "The Importance of Training and Development in Human Resources Management" is a perfect example of a management research proposal. This proposal seeks to investigate whether indeed organisations know what is required for Training and Development (T& D) to serve any strategic importance in human resource management and whether T& D has a return on investment. A quantitative research approach is proposed for use, and a sample size of 100 respondents in two organisations is targeted using a questionnaire. The proposal ends with identifying expected outcomes which include the probability that T& D is important for firms, but its efficacy depends on its design and implementation.
Another expected outcome would be that when used well, organisations are likely to realise a return on the investments made in T& D. Introduction Human resource professions are increasingly agreeing that training and development are vital for purposes of enhancing the skills and capabilities of an organisation’ s human capital. However, it is still contentious whether or not such training and development give a return on the investments made to it by different organisations. The importance of the proposed investigation to this writer is that it will allow a deeper understanding of the different aspects of human resource management, and especially a determination on whether training and development add any value to an organisation.
Academically, this investigation is intended to add to the wealth of knowledge that exists about HRM. Specifically, the proposed research will seek to make contributions to existing knowledge gaps about whether organisations realise returns for the investments made towards training and developing skills in their employees. From a business perspective, the proposed research is expected to provide insight to organisation leaders, who depending on the findings, will decide whether training and development have any strategic value for their firms. Aim of the proposed study To determine the importance (or lack thereof) of training and development in HRM To determine whether T& D has any strategic value for organisations To determine whether it is always possible for organisations to realise a return on the investment made in T& D Literature review Training and Development in human resources is a widely discussed subject.
Authors like Arthur et al. (2003), Billet (2004), Bishop (2008), Blume et al.
(2010), Burke and Hutchins (2007), Phillips (2003), Devins and Johnson (2003), and Kirkpatrick and Kirkpatrick (2009) among others have investigated T& D’ s use in small and large organisations. Although it is hard to find a common definition of T& D among all cited authors, it is largely agreed that training occurs when an expert works with learners with the intention of transferring specific knowledge and/or skills to them in order to improve their performances in the workplace (Yawson 2009, p. 14). More aptly, Pepper (1984, cited by Wilson 1999, p. 118) defines training as “ that organised process concerned with the acquisition of capability, or the maintenance of capability” .
To make any meaningful contribution to human resources, Fitzgerald (1992, p. 81) observes that “ training must be tied to performance; otherwise, it is an event with little payback for the organisation” . In other words, training is important for an organisation if it succeeds in paying back the investment made to it by giving employees more skills and knowledge and preparing them for future job roles.
Adamson, P & Caple, 1996, ‘The training and development audit evolves: is your training and development budget wasted?’ Journal of European Industrial Training, vol. 20, no. 5, pp. 3-12.
Anderson, V 2004, Research methods in HRM, CIPD, London
Arthur, W, Bennet, W, Edens, P, & Bell, S 2003, ‘ Effectiveness of training in organisations: a meta-analysis of design and evaluation features’, Journal of Applied Psychology, vol. 88, no. 2, pp. 234-245.
Asano, M & Ohara, K2002, ‘Human resource development systems focusing on HR ROI’, NRI Papers, no. 51, July, pp. 1-9.
Bernthal, P 2003, ‘Measuring the impact of training and development’, Development Dimensions International White Paper, pp. 1-6.
Billet, S 2004, ‘Workplace participatory practices: conceptualising workplaces as learning environments’, Journal of Workplace Learning, vol. 16, no. 6, pp. 312-324.
Bishop, D 2008, ‘The small enterprise in the training market’, Education + Training, vol. 50, nos. 8/9, pp. 661-673.
Blume, B, Ford, J, Baldwin, T & Huang, J 2010, ‘Transfer of training- a meta-analytic review’, Journal of Management, vol. 39, pp. 1065-1105.
Burke, L A & Hutchins, H M 2007, ‘Training transfer: an integrative literature review’, Human Resource Development Review, vol. 6, no. 3, pp. 263-269.
Burns, R 2000, Introduction to research methods, Sage, London.
Coetzer, A, Redmond, J & Sharafizad, J 2012, ‘decision making regarding access to training and development in medium-sized enterprises: an exploratory study using the critical incident technique’, European Journal of Training and Development, vol. 6, no.4, pp. 426-447.
Creswell, J W 2009, Research design: qualitative, quantitative and mixed methods approaches, SAGE Publications Inc., California.
Devins, D & Johnson, S 2003, ‘Training and development in SMEs’, International Small Business Journal, vol. 21, no. 2, pp. 213-228.
Fitzgerald, W 1992, ‘Training versus development’, Training & Development, May, pp. 81-84.
Hesketh, E A & Laidlaw, J. M 2003, ‘Quantitative research’, viewed 11 January 2013,
Investors in People 1991, The national standard- links to the assessment indicators, Employment Department, Sheffield.
Kaminski, K & Lopes, T 2009, ‘Return on investment: training and development’, Society for Human Resource Management, viewed 10 January 2013, http://www.shrm.org/education/hreducation/documents/09-0168%20kaminski%20roi%20tnd%20im_final.pdf.
Kirkpatrick, D 2012, ‘Getting to Kirkpatrick levels 3 and 4: creating believable value’, viewed 11 January 2013, < http://www.trainingindustry.com/media/15260939/11_5_12_executiveseminarseries_materials.pdf>.
Kirkpatrick, D L & Kirkpatrick J D 2009, Evaluating training programs, Berrett-Koehler Publishers, San Francisco, CA.
Laird, D, Holton, E F, & Naquin, S 2003, Approaches to training and development: third edition revised and updated, Basic Books, New York.
Noe, R A 2002, Employee training and development, (2nd edition), McGraw Hill, Columbus, OH.
O’Connor, J & Semour, J 1994, Training with NPL- Skills for managers, trainers and communicators, The Aquarian Press, California.
Phillips, J J 2003, Return on investment in training and performance improvement programs (second edition), Elsevier Inc, Cambridge.
Phillips, J J 2007, ‘Measuring ROI in human resources- calculating the impact of ROI on HR programs’, ROI Institute, pp. 1-23, viewed 10 January 2013, http://www.competentiebeleid.be/assets/waarom/Measuring_ROI.pdf.
Reskin, D B 2011, ‘What is ethics in research & why is it important?’ The National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, viewed 11 January 2013, http://www.niehs.nih.gov/research/resources/bioethics/whatis/>.
University of Minnesota Centre for Bioethics 2003, ‘A guide to bioethics’, viewed 11 January 2013,
Walter, D 2001, Training on the job: a new team-driven approach that empowers employees, is quick to implement, gets bottom-line results, American Society for Training and Development, New York.
Wilson, J P & Western, S 2001, ‘performance appraisal: an obstacle to training and development?’ Career Development International, vol. 6, no. 2, pp. 93-100.
Wilson, J P 1999, Human resource development: learning & training for individuals & organisations, Kogan Page Publishers, London.
Yawson, F 2009, ‘Training and development in Customs Excise and Preventative Service (CEPS) in Ghana’, Institute of Distance Learning- Thesis, viewed 10 January 2013, http://dspace.knust.edu.gh:8080/jspui/bitstream/123456789/587/1/Frank%20Yawson.pdf.