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 Understand and Use One Evaluation Model – comes from the Free Guide – Are You Struggling To Demonstrate The Return On Investment You Get From Your Training Providers?

There are so many models used to evaluate training that we are paralysed to use any  because;
A) Experts cannot agree on what’s best, and
B) The models are complex in both their construction & their execution, and
C) Unless you can absolutely get to your cash ROI it seems almost pointless.

The 2 predominant models are:

Kirkpatrick’s Model

Donald Kirkpatrick introduced a model in 1955 that has stood the test of time. It is still the most talked about, challenged and used. It comprises of 4 levels:

1. Reaction:     What did the Learner think of the training?
2. Learning:    How much did the Learner learn?
3. Behaviour:  How much has the Learner’s behaviour changed?
4. Results:       What has been the impact on results?

Kaufman’s 5 Levels of Evaluation

Some may argue that Kaufman’s 5 Levels of Evaluation are not all that much different to Kirkpatrick’s – and you could very well think that. The core of this model is similar to Kirkpatrick’s approach. The 5 levels include:

1. Process:                             This is broken into two sub-parts – Enabling and Reaction. Enabling focuses the                                                                      evaluation lens on inputs, e.g., availability and quality of materials needed to support a                                                        learning effort.

2. Acquisition:                      This level evaluates the competency and mastery of a test group, or individual, in a                                                                controlled setting.

3. Application:                     The purpose of this level is to evaluate the success of the group, or individual, based on                                                       how they are using the training programme content.

4. Organisation Output:    This level’s purpose is to evaluate the results of the contributions and payoffs of the entire                                                   organisation, as attributed to the training.

5. Societal Outcomes:         This level looks to see how the contributions to and from the end-user are impacted by the                                                  training.

Knowing that there are so many evaluations, coupled with the complexity and need for absolute ROI explains why we are paralysed to act and the result is very few evaluations at levels 2, 3, and 4.


We suggest following Kirkpatrick’s model because it is the most popular, which although doesn’t mean the best, it is a huge improvement on the current levels of evaluation being carried out. You can read more about this model in Kirkpatrick’s whitepaper. You can then either implement your own simple version of Kirkpatrick’s model using one of the proven solutions in this Guide, or contact us to implement our model, which is based on Kirkpatrick’s model – See Proven Solution 5 on Page 07.

Darren A. Smith

About Darren A. Smith

Darren has been working in the world of UK Supermarkets and Suppliers for over 20 years. He began his career as a buyer at one of the big 4 UK supermarkets and after rising through the ranks he decided to leave after 13 years and set-up Making Business Matter.For the last 14 years he has run MBM, which is a training provider to the UK grocery industry. Helping suppliers to the big four supermarkets to develop the soft skills that will secure them more profitable wins.

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