Align Learning and Development to Business- Step 6: Analyze and Report

Dec 31, 2015


This article is the last in a seven-part series on becoming a strategic partner by aligning learning and development with business objectives. In the previous article, we discussed training design and how to use micro-learning, gamification, and spaced repetition to increase learner engagement and improve retention.


Assemble the Data

As your participants complete the learning programs, assemble the data from your learning management system and other tracking tools. You should have three types of measures: efficiency, effectiveness, and business outcome (Fitz-Enz, Jac, and John Mattox. Predictive Analytics for Human Resources. Hoboken, New Jersey: Wiley & Sons, 2014.)

Here are some examples of metrics that will be useful:

Efficiency MeasuresAlign_Learning_and_Development_to_Business-_Step_6_Analyze_and_Report.jpg

  • Participation and completion data
  • Time to completion
  • Cost savings

Effectiveness Measures

  • Assessments
  • Participant ratings and feedback (Remember to account for rater bias.
  • Performance data
  • Time to proficiency
  • Learning retention
  • Employee engagement
  • Employee retention

Business Outcome Measures

  • Dollar value of linked objectives achieved
  • Performance output measures
  • Revenue per FTE
  • Performance ratings

Analyze the Data

As we discussed in Step 3, how you analyze the data will depend on the resources you have available and where you are on the Analytics Maturity Model. In your analysis, consider using these metrics:

  • In your tracking sheet, add a column for the value of the goal achievement and calculate the value of the learning contribution.
  • For indirectly supported goals, identify the improvement in the supported goal. If you can quantify a contribution to a financial result, use it. Be prepared to defend it.
  • Include cost savings on e-learning.
  • Identify and report on strong correlations between successful interventions and issues executives care about.
  • Identify improvements in quality measures, such as employee engagement and retention.

Tell the Story

Presenting the results to business leaders is about more than facts and figures. It is the story of how a strategic partnership improved business results. Gather intelligence on your audience and use it to shape the message.

Remember the rules of effective presentations. We like these tips from PowerPoint Ninja:

  • Start strong: purpose, clear direction, and expected result.
  • Use time wisely. Leave time for discussion.
  • Be flexible. Expect the audience to want skip back or move ahead.
  • Be prepared with additional supporting data. Know the backstory.
  • Know your audience.
  • Keep it simple.
  • Be prepared.

Tell the story:

  1. Introduce the characters. Make the sponsor the hero. You are the sidekick.
  2. Describe the challenges.
  3. Identify the need for intervention.
  4. Describe the solution chosen and why.
  5. Briefly outline the deployment.
  6. Present the results, with the focus on financial results.

One final tip: don’t give them a report at the beginning of the meeting. They’ll read it and leave.

Tell Us Your Alignment Story

Our wish for you is that you create a strong partnership with your business operators, and can share the story of how your learning programs helped your company become a high-performing learning organization.

We would like to hear about your successes. How have you aligned training and development to the business? What surprises did you encounter? What happened to employee engagement and productivity?


Fitz-Enz, Jac, and John Mattox. Predictive Analytics for Human Resources. Hoboken, New Jersey: Wiley & Sons, 2014.

7 Tips for Presenting to Senior Executives. PowerPoint Ninja. December 21, 2009. Retrieved December 19, 2015. 

Pixentia is a full-service technology company dedicated to helping clients solve business problems, improve the capability of their people, and achieve better results. 

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