Knowledgebase: Performance at Work
On the job training
Posted by - NA - on 17 December 2008 08:51 AM

Usually some sort of training is required before a new job can be performed effectively because most people are not experts in the tasks needed to complete a job.  One method of training someone for the job is called 'on-the-job training' (OJT). This involves developing knowledge and learning practical skills which relate to specific competencies. On the job training occurs in working environments where the actual equipment, tools and materials are used to perform tasks which will be used once training has been completed. This type of training is useful if it is well organised, planned and carried out on the work station and is good for jobs where equipment is easy to learn.

Training can be done in several ways. It can be done through demonstration, whereby the employee is shown what to do, or it can be done by coaching, or job rotation. Job rotation involves providing the employee with a range of activities where they will spend a certain amount of time in the different areas. For example, a manager might spend time in the several different departments where they are exposed to other parts of the organisation.  OJT is useful in certain types of jobs, such as army training and building up physical fitness and learning the skills needed to perform during combat (using weapons, survival skills for outdoors), or even learning how to use machinery. Another example for on-the job training would be learning to use a computer program (e.g. Microsoft excel, or simulation pilot training) which would be used every day on the job.

OJT is useful because employees are not away from their work station and they will become for confident in the tasks needed to be completed. The trainee is also able to assess the progress of the employee as they are working and it allows the employee to learn more skills and even become more comfortable with the people and develop staff relationships. However, OJT might not be useful in cases where the trainee is not properly trained, or if there is not enough time for the process to be completed.