Section 4.1: Needs Analysis Process

Harpreet Kaur; Alan Zhou; and Harvin Sidhu

The Training Needs Analysis Process

Conducting a training needs analysis (TNA) is very important in determining the main operational issues and helps in identifying the solutions to those issues. The training needs analysis helps to:

  • Make training more effective by providing various insights.
  • Ensure the right areas are covered by the training.
  • Prioritize and organize training needs.
  • Provide solution development (Robertson, 2021).

Steps involved in the TNA process include:

A concern: Referred to as an itch or pressure point, that has captured the attention of the manager. For example, noticing that customers are being treated rudely or recognizing a change in the external environment, such as new legislation

Importance: Identifying if it is central to the effectiveness of the organization and what the cost implications of the problem are.

Consult stakeholders: Identifying and involving stakeholders who have a vested interest in the process and outcomes of the needs analysis process.

Data collection: Collecting of the information from three levels of analysis (organization, task, and person/employee).

Why Do You Need to Conduct a Training Needs Analysis?

TNA is a tool that contributes to the growth of the organization. There are various reasons for conducting a TNA, some of which are listed below:

To ensure the organization is running the required training session

TNA helps in finding the right training programs for the organization so every employee can perform their tasks by meeting the organization’s specific standards (Morrison, 2019). TNA will also help in providing information related to the type of training required for employees. This ensures that the organization offers relevant training sessions to help employees receive the exact information they require for their job performance (Morrison, 2019).

Need to Escalate the Return on Investment

The training costs and time spent on the training and learning outcomes help identify the return on investment (ROI) for the organization. It is important for the business to think about the time and money invested in the particular training, as well as the benefits acquired from those training sessions (Morrison, 2019). TNA helps identify the most appropriate training requirements.

Helps in Understanding Performance Gaps

Organizations need various ways of improving their business requirements according to the demands of the market. To achieve their business goals, organizations need to train employees according to their job responsibilities (Morrison, 2019). TNA helps in identifying the gaps between the current state and the desired state of employee skills/performance.

The type of training and who is receiving the training are important factors in determining the appropriate training solutions to improve employee and organizational performance.

How to Conduct Training Need Analysis

Below, you can find the required steps in conducting TNA:

  • Define objectives: The first step in the TNA process is to clarify business objectives that are specifically related to an organization’s productivity and employee skills and also to determine the areas that need attention during the training program
  • Define the desired state: The next step is to define the main goals the training needs to achieve
  • Collect data: Collect data on the current state of employee performance as well as the productivity of the organization
  • Perform gap analysis: Perform an analysis of employee performance and organizational development to identify skills gaps and training needs that can help address these gaps
  • Seek agreement on actions: Throughout the process, seek agreement on actions in the performance gap analysis by involving stakeholders in the process
  • Create a training plan: Create a detailed training plan that includes what kind of training, who receives the training will be provided, who will receive the training, who will provide the training, and when and where the training will take place
  • Create an assessment plan: An assessment plan will help in ensuring that the gaps identified in the performance gap analysis will be covered
  • Design training courses or activities: Organization can purchase or design their own training program. Designing your own training plan helps in controlling the desired training needs of the learners. Purchasing the training plan involves less effort and helps in focusing on the special areas of the training programs (Shawe, 2013).

Obstacles in Conducting TNA

Organizations need to consider the following barriers to conducting a TNA:


Some organizations think that conducting a TNA is a waste of time and does not provide much of a benefit. However, when carried out correctly, a TNA saves the business time in the long term, as it helps determine the most effective type of training required for the organization (PulseLearning, 2019).

Relevant Information

When an organization changes roles and restructures departments, it has an impact on the training needs of employees. It is very important for the organization to conduct a TNA with updated information every year before the employee training reviews (PulseLearning, 2019).



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People Learning and Development Copyright © by Harpreet Kaur; Alan Zhou; and Harvin Sidhu is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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