Project Management And Evaluation

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Project Management and Evaluation

Project Management and Evaluation

Executive Summary

Training and development remains an important human resource (HR) practice of interest to researchers, managers, governments, and employees. Training research is of substantial interest and reviews show its enormous and continued growth. Training is of major interest to practitioners and managers in order to update employee skills, improve job performance and productivity, and develop the competencies employees need to meet the strategic objectives of their organizations. Training is of significance to governments who facilitate its use to provide the capabilities a country needs for economic growth and to address skill shortages in a highly competitive global economy. Lastly, training is important to employees for whom it increases employment duration and continuity, pay, and career advancement.

However, problematic issues continue to arise in regard to the usefulness of and return on training and development (Bunch, 2007). Managers want to know what the return is on their investment. Yet, the impact of training on performance continues to be rarely evaluated and its ROI rarely calculated. Scholars lament that practitioners do not use the results of research to incorporate the well-developed scientific knowledge about training into needs analysis, design, delivery, transfer, and evaluation. Governments are criticized for under investing in the training and development needed by their countries for economic growth.


Four major approaches underlie research into training and development in organizations: those of human resource management (HRM), industrial/organizational (I/O) psychology, labour economics, and industrial relations.

The earlier field of 'personnel management' considered training as one of several separate HR practices and focused on identifying and implementing training models in a series of steps to improve individuals' job performance. By contrast, in the HRM approach, HR practices, including training and development, are used to improve organizational performance, help implement an organization's business strategy and meet its objectives, and help build a sustainable competitive advantage that creates financial performance. The approach is strategic in terms of managing human resources to meet the organization's objectives.

The theoretical basis for the strategic HRM approach includes the resource-based view (RBV) of the firm. High-performance work systems (HPWS) are integrated systems of HR and other work practices that are internally consistent with each other and externally consistent with organizational strategy. HPWS are designed to help develop valuable, unique employee capacities that assist an organization to develop core competencies - firm-specific resources and capabilities that enable an organization to enact a strategy that creates value by not being implemented simultaneously by competitors and which competitors find hard to duplicate. Developing employees is an effective way of gaining valuable, rare and perhaps unique capacities, and training and development is a key practice, amongst others, to do so. Training, in combination with other HR practices (e.g., selective staffing, performance-contingent compensation, developmental and merit-based performance appraisal) and other work practices such as work design (self-managed teams, flexible work assignments, teamwork), open communication, quality improvement, and decentralized decision-making, helps develop core competencies by which the organization can gain a sustained competitive ...
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