How does a training matrix work?

Written by doug hewitt
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How does a training matrix work?

A training matrix is helpful to an organisation in keeping records of which employees have received particular training classes. Sometimes there are OSHA (Occupational Safety & Health Organization) requirements for safety. A training matrix that lists the courses that each employee has taken will provide written proof that employees have received safety training. There are other reasons to have a training matrix, and companies should have meetings to discuss what they want their training matrices to record. For example, if a company has a series of training courses that are important to annual reviews, then a training matrix can be used for the review process. Also, when considering promotions, a training matrix can provide justification for a promotion or the denial of a promotion. As long as management understands and agrees to what a training matrix will record, the training matrix will provide a valuable tool to employee management.

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Create The Training Matrix

To design a training matrix, decide the kind of database you are going to use, such as Excel. For smaller companies, a paper matrix consisting of lines on graph paper will suffice. In either case, the general design of a training matrix is to create a grid of lines. Down the left side of the grid, employee names will be listed. Across the top of the matrix, the series of training courses will be listed. It's like a multiplication table with the numbers 0 through 9 running down the left side and across the top, and where each column meets each row, the multiplicative result is written down; for example, the row with 3 meeting the column with 5 would have 15 as the result. In the case of a training matrix, the name of each employee will run across the columns with the different training courses. In each block where they meet, the date the employee took that training class will be listed. If the course is not required, an X can be written in the block. Also, if the course is not taken, it could be left blank or the words "not yet taken" can be entered. See the illustration for an example.

How does a training matrix work?
Sample Training Matrix

Training Matrix Upkeep

As each year progresses, employees will take more training courses as management sees fit. The dates courses are taken will be entered into the appropriate matrix block. It's also useful to have an entry space somewhere on the matrix form for the date that the matrix was last updated. It's important to decide who will update the matrix and where the master copy will be located so that management knows who is responsible for keeping the training matrix updated and so that no one will be entering erroneous data.

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