June 29, 2022

Employee Training Programs: How To Measure Success

Sam Caucci

Women in black and white

Employee training programs are becoming an essential part of employee retention strategies. But how can we be sure our training programs are effective? 

The Importance of Training

At 1Huddle, we know your employees are one of your biggest investments. Great teams can make or break any business, from start-ups to established companies. And The Great Resignation showed businesses a harsh truth. Employees under stress will vote with their feet. So, how do we keep our best employees?

Eighty-seven percent of workers believe it will be essential for them to get training and develop new job skills throughout their careers. In a LinkedIn study in 2018, a whopping 94% of employees would stay with employers if they invested in their careers. If employers developed and promoted from within the company, employees would also stay.

Onboarding is also a key factor in employee retention. Companies lose 25% of all new employees within the first year. But 69% of employees are more likely to stay with a company for three years if they experienced great onboarding.

On the flip side, employee training and development have a positive impact on your bottom line—benefits like accident avoidance to increased productivity. Employee training programs can create stable, dedicated teams that positively affect business growth. And your peace of mind.

Business Training Metrics

Great, so you set up employee training programs. How can you measure their success? Think about two factors: 1) how people (employees, managers, customers) are feeling and 2) what the numbers tell you. 

Here’s where to start. 

The Kirkpatrick Evaluation Model is a standard for evaluating employee training programs. The four levels of Kirkpatrick’s model can give you a structure for assessing success. Here are the four areas to consider: 

  • Reaction
    How the employee felt and how effective they thought the training was. This metric can be measured through observation and survey. A simple exit survey or daily check-in can give you reaction metrics. You can ask questions like:
  • Is the information easy to understand?
  • Rate the relevance of the training.
  • How did you feel following this training session?
  • What was your biggest takeaway? 


The more positive a reaction to the training, the more the employee will get out of the training. Employee satisfaction and perception are important to the ongoing implementation of key training points. 

  • Behavior
    How did the employee’s behavior change following the training? Watch employee behavior following training. The resulting statistics will show whether your employee training program is effective.

    Let’s say your business training is centered around customer support. Your business should see improved customer satisfaction scores and fewer support sessions for problem resolution. Also? Are your employees happier? Employee mood is an indicator of training success.
  • Results
    How did the training affect the business? Stakeholders have goals they expect achieved through training. The company should also see a solid ROE on the training investment. Given these pre-established goals, KPIs can be developed to assess training effectiveness.

    For example, stakeholders are using employee training programs to try and reduce accidents on the shop floor. The accident rate, then, becomes a key indicator of success. And the ROE is also measurable. Increased safety will reduce expenses associated with accidents.
  • Learning
    How much did they actually learn? How much did they retain? This metric is the most critical affecting both employee behavior and ongoing results. Retention is key to training success. Measure employee learning and retention through testing during the program. You can also retest afterwards. 

The Curve of Forgetting: Retention Statistics 

Even the best employee training and development programs are affected by the Curve of Forgetting. The stats are surprising. The day after your training ends, most employees will have forgotten at least 50% of what they learned and, possibly, up to 80%! 

One week later, the employee loses most of what they learned, retaining about 3%. There are factors like training relevance and employee buy-in, as we discussed earlier. But, generally, most of what we learn is lost. 

The Curve of Forgetting has an upside; however, the statistics are on regular review. Reviewing the material, even for a few minutes, makes a huge difference to retention. The employee should review the day after the training, again a week later, and then a month later, even for a few minutes. 

How 1Huddle Can Help Employee Training Retention

1Huddle supports memory retention by constantly challenging your employee’s memory

Testing is one of the most potent ways to drive retention, forcing the employee to review material.  1Huddle is an ongoing teaching and retention program wrapped up in a fun trivia game. Employees enjoy using it. They review the information and retain much more of what they learned. 1Huddle ensures your hard-earned training dollars aren’t disappearing in a puff of forgetting.

If you want practical training that helps employees retain their new skills, take advantage of our free demo today. 

Sam Caucci Founder & CEO at 1Huddle