Performance Requirements – Front-End Analysis: Blueprint for Success (Part 2)
Performance Requirements: “It is important not to rule out any of the alternative solutions (not only instruction, but also performance support, improved references, changes to practice or process, better selection of persons to assign to critical tasks, and changes to supervisory or managerial practices) before completing the investigation and analysis.”
In Part 1, published last week, I outlined the Front End Analysis (FEA) process and its many elements, with attention to the information that you will need to collect. This week I describe how to conduct an FEA and how to report the results.
Gather information to obtain knowledge from subject matter experts (SMEs), appropriate job-performance personnel, target audience, and other relevant resources. Use this information to create a task list for job performance requirements or instructional goals.
In order to produce a Front End Analysis (FEA), use any or all of these four methods to gather information: self-completed questionnaires, direct interviews, focus groups, and direct observation. Other techniques are available.
Self-completed (survey) questionnaires
Self-completed questionnaires gather information from a large population sample. Construct each question to require specific information, because specific questions leave less to the respondent’s ability to add subjective interpretation. Design each question with the help of a Subject Matter Expert (SME), because an SME’s participation should ensure that the questions are focused and accurate. Test the questionnaire with a sample group of employees or trainees.
Do you want anonymous questionnaires? If so, ensure that responses will remain anonymous. Of course, anonymous responses means there is no way to contact respondents for follow-up questions or to clarify answers. One way to solve this problem is to code the questionnaires so that only designated data personnel can match code numbers to names. Additional surveys, in combination with observation and other techniques, may help the task analyst confirm what was learned.
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