How to Collect Training Feedback | Importance & Free Template

How to Collect Training Feedback | Importance & Free Template

Feedback plays a critical role in many aspects of business. Gathering feedback from employees can provide them with a sense of belonging. Actioning that feedback to improve operations can enhance the way you do business and have a massive impact on employee satisfaction and retention.

Collecting and analysing training feedback in particular has the potential to enhance your training courses and improve employee engagement. It plays a critical role in fostering a growth culture that values learning, development and continuous assessment.

What is Training Feedback?

Training feedback is the collection and analysis of opinions on learning initiatives. It can take many different forms including questionnaires, interviews, anonymous surveys and more.

People often ask about the difference between training feedback and training evaluation. While the two may seem similar at first, they are distinct processes.

Training evaluation refers to an in-depth analysis of learning from multiple sources, often comparing the results of training to larger company goals and objectives. Efforts to collect feedback can form an integral part of this bigger process, but they can also be conducted without further evaluation taking place. There are also plenty of other factors and techniques involved in training evaluation beyond gathering learner feedback.

Why is Training Feedback Important?

Learning is a subjective process. Each learner will approach training courses with their own knowledge and experience behind them, which can significantly impact their learning experience and the effectiveness of training.

Educators can spend months carefully planning training initiatives, and still find that learners don’t connect with the training materials in the way they anticipated. Sometimes they don’t accommodate different learning styles effectively or use the wrong type of assessment for engagement. In other cases, it could be the language that’s used. It could even just be that the learner is undergoing training at the wrong time for them to fully engage with the content.

There are so many facets to the learning process that the most efficient way of understanding where training courses can be improved is by gathering, analysing and actioning feedback.

training feedback form Mockup 1

Your Training Feedback Template

Understanding the importance of feedback and knowing how to gather it are two separate matters. We’ve taken the guesswork out of collecting feedback by gathering the most popular and effective training feedback questions and putting them into a handy downloadable template

With these 21 questions, you can:

  • Easily share the template to effortlessly gather feedback
  • Gain valuable insights into your training initiatives
  • Pinpoint areas for training improvement
  • Highlight aspects of training that you’re nailing

Better still, the template is customisable. This makes it easy to get the feedback that you need in specific areas of your training program and enhance your learning and development initiatives and your overall operations.

Download the free training feedback template today.

Take the Guesswork Out of Feedback!

Use our effective training feedback questions to start collecting insights.

5 Benefits of Collecting Feedback on Your Training Programs

We’ve already looked at a few of the advantages of training feedback. However, there are many long-term benefits of feedback collection that businesses often overlook. These include:

1. Improved Engagement

The more engaged learners are with your training content, the better their knowledge retention will be. Training feedback can help you make future employee training programs more effective and engaging. Just as importantly, actively encouraging learners to think of improvements for a training course they’ve completed can help learner engagement with existing content as well.

Want to boost knowledge retention?

Understanding the Ebbinghaus Forgetting Curve can help.

2. Show Employees You Care

Actively asking for and encouraging feedback and taking it onboard into future training planning shows employees that their opinions are heard and appreciated. This enhances overall employee satisfaction. You’ll show that the people who work for the company are valuable contributors whose feedback directly impacts your operations and culture.

3. Build Valuable Soft Skills

Expressing opinions and openly communicating them are not skills that come naturally to everyone. These power skills can be critical assets to your systems and processes. By enhancing communication and other soft skills, you’re setting your business up for long-term and large-scale success.

Looking for courses to enhance your teams’ soft skills?

These 10 free courses will help them level up in no time.

4. Direct Upskilling and Reskilling

Training feedback is also a great opportunity to identify skill gaps and areas of further training for your employees. It will give you a better idea of how well learners understand their training sessions. This will make it easier to pinpoint areas where upskilling and reskilling may be valuable to individuals and your business as a whole.

5. Ideas for Future Training Initiatives

Often the feedback that you gather from training sessions will provide you with ideas for future courses and training programs. If learners identify areas that they want to learn more about, or ideas that weren’t effectively covered within your training program, it provides an opportunity for your business to develop content for those subjects.

bored female learner stares at screen displaying lack of willingnes to offer training feedback

Challenges of Collecting Training Feedback

Despite the many ways that honest feedback can benefit your business, getting the feedback that you need is not without its challenges.

Lack of Willingness

Educators are often uncomfortable gathering feedback, and learners are often uneasy providing it.

From an educator’s perspective, it takes significant time and effort to gather feedback. In the case of employee training, training can take educators away from their other responsibilities as well. The idea of having to regularly follow up to get unwilling participants to provide their opinions can feel pointless.

From a learner perspective, many feel that if they provide feedback that criticises the training programs, there could be negative consequences. This is especially when the educator is a colleague or manager, rather than someone they’re unfamiliar with.

Asking the Wrong Questions

Putting together training feedback survey questions can often take almost as much time as putting together a training course itself. Generic questions may have their place, but the most valuable feedback will come from questions that specifically relate to your training objectives. When training serves a particular purpose for your company, as all good training does, gathering feedback on how well it meets that purpose holds great potential. It can guide training enhancements and help you achieve and exceed your objectives.

Feedback as an Afterthought

Many companies that do gather feedback often send out a generic survey at the end of their training program without much thought or planning. They don’t consider what they want to achieve, or the kind of feedback that they want to get. It’s an ad-hoc process that’s done as an afterthought, with the feedback received often going unread or quickly scanned without any action coming from it.

This approach to feedback is exactly why both educators and learners often feel that training feedback is a waste of time. If the process isn’t carefully thought through and gathering data is inconsistent or ineffective, it becomes futile.

woman conducts group session as part of gathering training feedback

Methods of Collecting Training Feedback

Just as there are many different types of learning styles, so there are a wide range of methods that you can use to collect feedback. Some are best suited to pre-training, helping you to gauge learner expectations. Others are best used during the training process and can direct the training course itself. Still others work well for post-training evaluations. Let’s take a look at some examples.

Surveys

Employee surveys and questionnaires have become the most popular method of gathering feedback, and it’s easy to see why. With the right assessment tool you can put together a feedback questionnaire in minutes. And distributing surveys to learners can even form part of the training program itself, rather than being a separate initiative.

Surveys can be used at any time during the training process. For example, you can include a task for sending out employee surveys on training as part of your onboarding checklist. You can also create an employee engagement survey to understand where a training course could be made more interesting or interactive. Pulse surveys that ask one question at a time can also boost engagement, since they take minimal time and effort to complete.

One-on-One Interviews

360 performance reviews and check-ins are also a great time to ask for feedback on training initiatives. Often employees will feel more comfortable discussing their opinions on a training program with their direct manager, rather than with the person that ran the training itself. Exit and stay interviews, which prioritise honest feedback in general, are also good opportunities to discuss an employee’s thoughts on the training that was or is being provided.

Group Sessions

People often discuss their opinions more openly in a group setting. Hearing others’ feedback not only encourages individuals to share their own input, but it can also be a reminder about aspects of their own learning experience that they enjoyed, connected with or found frustrating.

Group sessions are a great tool for getting feedback on expectations before a course starts, or for wrapping up a training session. They’re best suited to in-person training or blended learning environments that facilitate Zoom calls, group hangouts, or social learning in general.

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