Sooner or later, every supervisor or manager becomes a trainer. While some managers are good at training, others are poor. But, most of them fall somewhere in between. However, understanding the effectiveness of the on-the-job training is of utmost importance to you as a manager irrespective of where you fall.

On the job training involves an experienced employee or a manager imparting professional knowledge and skills to team members or new employees.


It’s normally done within the organization’s premises either in a classroom, office cabin, or the work floor. In their research, the American Society for Training & Development said there is a 70/20/10 rule that applies to learning and development. They found out that;

70% of learning and development is experimental. It takes place through challenges, day-today tasks and practice;

20% of learning is social. It takes place through others from personal networks, coaching, and collaborative actions; and

10% of learning is formal. It takes place through structured programs and courses.

Therefore, according to the research, on-the-job learning is the most effective training technique as it involves experiments. It improves the actual performance of the employees and generates a positive business impact.

On-The-Job Training Case Study Conducted by The National Center of Education and Employment, New York A case study to determine the effectiveness of on-the-job training was conducted at Kemps Electronics stockroom. Kemps Electronics is a manufacturing plant in New York with approximately 500 employees. The study focused on the working milieu, how new employees were inducted into work activities and how experienced employees carried out their jobs. The researchers collected data through interviews at the training grounds, field observations, ethnographic study of the entire factory, semi-structured trainer and trainee interviews, and audiotaped observations of trainees and trainers.

The training organization was that as the new employees came in, they were assigned to experienced employees who took on the responsibility of training them. The new employees had a basic level of education with no prior experience. Training was subsidiary to work and the following factors were taken into consideration; the union policies, the composition of the workforce, the level of management conducting the training, and the supervisors view on how to train.

Though there was no prior planning, training was integrated into the ongoing work practices. So, the trainees were exposed to routine work activities only. Trainers incorporated talk to train the new employees and explained the activities as they were done.

Observation and Conclusion 
No new employee was fired for incompetence as they all began to function independently after the training. After some time, there was a notable level of effectiveness and adequacy in the stockroom as everyone got to work.

The researchers concluded that on-the-job training is a powerful learning tool for imparting the initial levels of competency. However, advanced training techniques may be required to train employees for long-term specialized careers with the possibilities of promotions.

In conclusion, the measure of the success of your training and development program is trainee competence on the job. A famous quote says “if the student hasn’t learnt, the teacher hasn’t taught.” This means that on-the-job training is an effective way to impart instantaneous skills to your employees.