Making sound business decisions isn’t easy. While listening to your gut feeling might be fruitful at times, this is unreliable at best and can put your business at risk.
Take employee training as an example. Investing in it can be incredibly beneficial for your business and can work wonders for boosting employee engagement, but only if you do it right.
So, how can you ensure that you’re doing it right? The employee training software can be expensive, and what if it doesn’t pay off?
Well, the only way to ensure that it pays off is by relying on data for business. Management decision making becomes more comfortable when you have accurate data that can help the process.
Relying on detailed data and business management analytics makes employee training a breeze. So, let’s take a look at how you can use data to make better business decisions regarding your employee training.
First things first: what is data-driven decision making?
Commonly abbreviated to DDDM, data-driven decision making refers to collecting valuable data, analyzing it, and using it to validate a course of action.
It’s how you use accurate information to make business decisions instead of merely relying on your gut feeling to do so.
Of course, not all data is of equal importance when you’re focusing on management decision making, and it’s important to distinguish what’s useful and what’s not.
When it comes to enhancing your employee training, deciding which data is meaningful depends on your training goals, objectives, and KPIs.
Benefits of data-driven decision making in business
You have a time and a place for relying on your intuition when making business decisions, but when you’re investing in employee training, it’s best to go with logic and data.
There are many benefits of data-driven decision making; let’s take a look at just a few of them.
1. Becoming proactive
If your business has never used the data-driven approach, it’s more than likely that you’ll make reactive decisions at first.
This can be very useful, as you’ll be able to analyze your problems and issues, for example, then work on solving them. Having said that, this isn’t the only thing that data can help you with.
As you start relying on data more and more, you’ll see that you can use it in different ways. You’ll be able to detect problems before they even arise, or recognize opportunities for growth before others do so.
Whether we’re talking about the data-driven approach to employee training or data-driven marketing opportunities, you’ll be more proactive and responsive.
2. Data decision making gives you confidence
As long as your data collection and analysis is thorough and complete, you’ll be able to make business decisions more confidently.
Relying on instincts or gut feelings can often lead to numerous mistakes, creating problems for you, your employees, and, eventually, your customers.
Data is measurable, logical, and reliable. Using data for making business decisions allows you to stay objective and gives you the best chance of making the right decisions.
Of course, data-driven decisions aren’t foolproof, and they won’t always guarantee success, but as long as your data is accurate and updated, you’ll have the highest chance of success.
3. Using data to make decisions is cost-efficient
Making a wrong business decision often results in financial losses, if not something worse. This can be in the form of wasting money on unproductive training courses, losing customers, or anything in between.
Data can help you cut your business expenses, and when it comes to employee training, you can cut costs on unnecessary materials, equipment, and more.
Just by being able to make smarter and faster business decisions, you’ll minimize the risks of making mistakes, and you’ll reduce your losses on fixing them.
4. Data-driven approach increases productivity
By using the data-driven approach to employee training, you’ll be able to measure the efficacy of your training software, as well as the increase in employee productivity.
This insight allows you to figure out what might be the problems in your training course, and what might be its most beneficial aspects.
Use this data to enhance your training program and ensure that your employees are reactive and productive learners.
Data-driven decision-making examples
An increasing number of companies are relying on data to improve their decision-making processes, and hearing their success stories can be both educational and inspirational.
Two of the largest companies that rely on data are, of course, Google and Amazon.
Google uses People Analytics to make better HR decisions and ensure that managers are making a difference and improving their teams’ overall performance.
Using the data gathered, Google has enhanced its management training programs and improved its employee satisfaction rates.
When it comes to Amazon, the data-driven approach is even more apparent. All of the product recommendations that customers see are based on data.
Amazon takes into account a customer’s previous purchases, their overall online behavior, and more to offer personalized shopping recommendations and improve its bottom line.
Data-driven decision making in employee training
Professional development and career growth are significant for all employees, and over 40% of them will leave their jobs if they have poor training opportunities.
If you’re interested in adopting the data-driven approach and improving your employee training, you’ll need to know how to do it properly.
Here are a few ideas that you should keep in mind when adopting a data-driven approach:
1. Set your goals
LMS system, and knowledge management software as a whole, collect extraordinary amounts of data that can be more than overwhelming.
While analyzing it all and relying on it all can often be an excellent idea, it’s not always possible.
This is why you should set clear goals for your employee training program. Be as specific as you can. If you want to cut your operational costs, determine precisely by how much. If you’re going to expedite the onboarding process, be specific about the appropriate amount of time that it should take.
When you know your specific goals, it’ll be easier to understand which data is important to you, and which information you can live without, and you’ll be able to improve your training software.
2. Get everyone on board
Once you’ve set your goals, it is important to inform your team. Keep them in the loop about which data you will collect, what you will use it for, and why it’s crucial.
This will ensure that everyone is on the same page and that everyone is using the data provided by the LMS system in the right way.
3. Start small
As already mentioned, collecting and analyzing data from knowledge management software can be a difficult and overwhelming task.
It’s easy to give up on the data-driven approach if it seems like it’s more work than it’s worth it. So, start small.
Before you fully commit to an LMS system and its data, give it a test run. Have a small team test the software and make use of its insights, and see how it goes.
This will ensure that you’re prepared for launching a full-scale employee training program and that you’re able to take advantage of the data you’re collecting.
4. Analyze performance and gather feedback
After your initial test run, analyze the overall performance of the software and the employees who used it and gather feedback.
While the data might be showing that everything is going well and that the productivity levels have increased, your employees might have more ideas on how you can make it even better.
Always re-evaluate your data and analyze the performance. The more time you devote to ensuring that the data is accurate and that you’re tracking the right metrics, the more valuable that data will be.
Things to consider when setting up knowledge management software
Knowledge management software can offer you a chance to gather valuable information about your employees’ performance and skill levels.
Nevertheless, since it can be expensive and time-consuming to set up an LMS system, it’s always best to ensure that you’re choosing the right one for your needs.
What you should pay attention to when choosing an LMS system includes:
- LMS features
Depending on your employee training goals, you should determine which LMS features are the most necessary for you.
Some of the basic features include:
- Integrated course authoring tool
- Online classrooms
- Customizable learning content
- Analytics & reporting
- Assessment capabilities
- Immediate feedback
Determine which LMS features are must-haves and which ones would be nice to have, then make your decision accordingly.
Any sound LMS system should be easily scalable. As your team grows (or shrinks) and as your learning needs change, so too should your LMS system.
If you can easily customize the system to meet your changing needs, you can rest assured that you’ve made the right decision.
- Business data security
Data security is extremely important for any business, so every software you use in your intranet should be adequately protected. Selecting and deploying effective security measures should always be your top priority.
You can rely on secure vpn to protect your network, especially if you have a BYOD policy in place.
Data-driven decision making for more effective employee training
Collecting and analyzing data can help you make better business decisions, help your business grow, and allow you to improve your employee training programs.
To make data-driven business decisions with ease, you should:
- Set your goals
- Keep everyone informed
- Start small if it’s your first time
- Analyze performance and gather feedback
Enhance your employee training with data, and make better business decisions with ease.
Robin is a Technical Support Executive. He is an expert in various LMS and employee training software. Currently, he is a resident learning management expert at ProProfs. In his free time, Robin enjoys cycling and sky diving.