Organizational development department may have different functions in each organization, but its primary function, according to the Society for Human Resources Management, is to “increase an organization’s effectiveness through planned interventions related to the organization’s process resulting in improvements in productivity, return on investment and employee satisfaction.” OD can assist an organization in achieving homeostasis or balance in the face of change’s continual impact on processes and people.
Training-whether as a response to an intervention or as a method for achieving goals is a large component of what the OD department does. Many organizations have some mandatory or required training for all employees as well as specified training requirements for particular positions that may involve licensing or certification and annual or periodic renewals. Having a central area through which OD and training services are offered is ideal.
However, in a number of hospitals and health systems, the training/education function is administered by a cadre of educators located in unrelated departments across the facility.
Designing Training for Sustainability
To ensure that organizational learning is effective, a systematic approach is prescribed as a best practice. The consistency of planning, execution, and metrics gives credibility and power to the OD process. Training can come in many formats, including in class, e-learning, online synchronous, self-paced DVD, and even video conferencing. Training designing process includes the following steps:
1) Analysis, in which facts are collected to determine the intervention necessary if any.
2) Design, in which the grand plan is established, the timelines are set, and the overall project outline is created.
3) Development, in which the tangibles take shape.
4) Implementation, in which the roll-out occurs and evaluation data are collected for future analysis.
5) Evaluation, in which the information is reviewed to determine whether the objectives were met.
Many OD departments often run this cycle on their training programs to maintain quality and to ensure that the objectives continue to be met.
Succession planning is the process for ensuring that the vitality of an organization continues by developing potential successors for the positions identified as critical to operations. A critical step in the succession planning model is to forecast demand and skills gaps for key positions (Blouinet al. 2006).
Succession planning process includes:
1) Review the organizational mission, goals, and objectives.
2) Identify critical positions and associated competencies.
3) Identify potential successors and associated competencies.
4) Provide professional development activities to support the succession planning
5) Review plan as vacancies are anticipated or as they occur.
6) Update plan as changes occurs to employee base or organizational objectives.