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RHD Operational Procedure – Management Services Wing
Training and HRD - Training Division
OP/HRD/2.1 - Training Needs Assessment
Purpose and Scope :

The purpose of the TNA is to identify the training requirements of groups and individuals to improve the performance of the RHD in accordance with RHD strategy and management plans.

The training needs of all levels of staff should be considered, including civil and mechanical engineers, diploma engineers, non-engineering specialists and other support staff.
Definitions :

Training Needs Assessment (TNA) - Identification of specific knowledge, skills or attitudes required by individuals or organisations to carry out tasks to an acceptable degree of effectiveness.
Responsibility :

Superintending Engineer (SE) - Training & HRD Circle -

1· Regularly consult with RHD senior management to identify training needs;
2· Determine when `major’ TNA or `interim TNA are required and direct staff on the extent of the survey;
3· Obtain approval and cooperation of senior RHD officers for conducting `major’ TNA;
4· Approve methodology of TNA;
5· Approve and publish TNA Report and Training Plan.

Executive Engineer (EE) - Training Division -
1· Check design of TNA;
2· Conduct interviews, run workshops and attend meetings as necessary for TNA survey;
3· Analyse results of TNA survey and establish Training and Organisational Development Needs;
4· Check TNA Reports and Training Plan produced.

Sub-Divisional Engineer (SDE) - Training Division -
1· Prepare the design of TNA,
2· Organise and conduct TNA survey,
3· Prepare TNA Report and Training Plan.
Method :


In a large organization such as RHD, training needs should be identified on a regular basis. Generally, training needs are associated with the following:
1· technical advancement,
2· recruitment of new staff,
3· organisation change, or
4· a specific request for training.

New staff will require induction training to explain the organization and function of RHD and most will require some computer network training. New staff may also require additional training if they are appointed to specialist posts.

A change in the organisation of RHD may also generate a training need. This organisational change may occur due to changes in RHD’s responsibilities, newly created Divisions or Circles or staff movements to specialist posts. Training for individuals in specialist postings should be prioritised in the early part of that posting, to maximise benefit from the training received.

Training requests may come from individual Projects or Circles or may be general training needs that have been identified in discussions with RHD.


It is envisaged that a full organizational Training Needs Assessment (sometimes referred to as a `Development Needs Assessment’) is undertaken every two years, or at a frequency agreed with the Chief Engineer. This TNA, referred to here as a `major’ TNA, determines both the general training needs of RHD and the specialist training needs of every Wing, Circle and Division.

An `interim’ TNA refers to all needs assessments that do not involve the whole of RHD. For example, this could be when a small number of new staff joins, when a specific training request is made or when minor organizational changes are made.


TNA can be undertaken using a variety of techniques such as:
1· Interviews,
2· Questionnaires,
3· Workshops, and
4· Meetings.

Meetings are not normally sufficient, except where only an `interim’ TNA is required. Often a combination of interviews, questionnaires and workshops will be needed to separate training needs from other organizational development needs, identify specialist and general needs, and prioritise these needs.

In a large organization such as RHD, undertaking a wide variety of functions, it is necessary to survey a large number of staff for a `major’ TNA. Those surveyed should be at all levels, from Work Assistants to Senior Officers.

Statistical analysis of questionnaires (e.g. using computer programmes) can be effective for establishing general training priorities. Identifying specialist training needs (e.g. for every Division) using statistical analysis may be more difficult (see 4.5 below).


Survey techniques used in previous TNAs are described in existing TNA reports, available at RHDTC. The aim of the survey is to identify any tasks that staff find difficult and where training could improve performance. Staff members can be given extracts from their job descriptions and asked to identify problem areas. Alternatively, staff members can be asked to describe their activities and then identify problem areas. There are advantages and disadvantages with both methods. Providing the staff with extracts from their job descriptions allows the survey to focus on ‘key result areas’. It may also speed up the survey process. Not providing the job description can, however, give some insight into whether the individual understands their responsibilities. This information can be useful in the TNA.


As described above, evaluation can be undertaken statistically or subjectively. Statistical methods are good for identifying general training needs when a large number of staff undertake similar activities. In RHD however, there are numerous divisions, with different activities, and staff at different levels. A pure statistical assessment of training needs may not be reliable unless a significant number of staff questioned at every level who perform the same functions. For field divisions, therefore, statistical analysis based on standard questionnaires may be the most reliable method to establish development needs. For specialist (e.g. most headquarters posts) a subjective judgment based on questionnaires and interviews with particular staff may be more appropriate.

During evaluation the following should be considered:
1· Is the need in a ‘key result area’ (i.e. significantly affect performance of the Wing/Circle/ Division)?
2· Is the need a ‘training’ or ‘ development ‘ need? (Not all problems can be resolved through training: e.g. lack of logistic support).
3· Is the need common across the Wing/Circle/Division? If ‘yes’, then training is likely to be required, if ‘no’ then some assistance to the individual done be sufficient.

Evaluation of training needs would normally include some cost-benefit analysis to justify and prioritise training needs. An appropriate method of training evaluation has not yet been identified for RHD. This should be developed as part of the process if feasible. Currently a subjective judgment of whether a training course is ‘cost effective’ will be needed, based on the training cost in proportion to the budget, the number of trainees it will reach and the strategic benefits of the training in terms of RHD’s ‘key result areas’ and the likelihood of the training being effective.


The Training Needs Assessment Report (TNAR) is the main ‘output’ from the TNA. This is generally in the form of a list of training subjects that should be covered, and the respective ‘target group’ of trainees. As much detail as possible on the subjects should be given so that courses are designed with the right emphasis. From the Training Plan, a programme will be produced (see OP/HRD/2.2).
References :

RHD Training Centre, Mirpur (January 2001), Training Programme.
Procedure Flowchart :





For duties associated with each grade of personnel see


Updated on : 1/1/2004