Paper should be a gap analysis of the organization revolving around the issue at hand. Please see directions below. Four of the six references used should be scholarly journals.
FOUR STEPS TO CONDUCTING AN ORGANIZATIONAL DIAGNOSTICS:
Step 1. PERFORM A “GAP” ANALYSIS.
The first step is to check the actual performance of our organizations and our people against existing standards, or to set new standards. There are two parts to this:
Current situation: We must determine the current state of skills, knowledge, and abilities of our current and/or future employees. This analysis also should examine our organizational goals, climate, and internal and external constraints.
Desired or necessary situation: We must identify the desired or necessary conditions for organizational and personal success. This analysis focuses on the necessary job tasks/standards, as well as the skills, knowledge, and abilities needed to accomplish these successfully. It is important that we identify the critical tasks necessary, and not just observe our current practices. We also must distinguish our actual needs from our perceived needs, our wants.
The difference the “gap” between the current and the necessary will identify our needs, purposes, and objectives. What are we looking for? Here are some questions to ask, to determine where HRD may be useful in providing solutions: (3)
Problems or deficits. Are there problems in the organization which might be solved by training or other HRD activities?
Impending change. Are there problems which do not currently exist but are foreseen due to changes, such as new processes and equipment, outside competition, and/or changes in staffing?
Opportunities. Could we gain a competitive edge by taking advantage of new technologies, training programs, consultants or suppliers?
Strengths. How can we take advantage of our organizational strengths, as opposed to reacting to our weaknesses? Are there opportunities to apply HRD to these areas?
New directions. Could we take a proactive approach, applying HRD to move our organizations to new levels of performance? For example, could team building and related activities help improve our productivity?
Mandated training. Are there internal or external forces dictating that training and/or organization development will take place? Are there policies or management decisions which might dictate the implementation of some program? Are there governmental mandates to which we must comply?
Step 2. IDENTIFY PRIORITIES AND IMPORTANCE.
The first step should have produced a large list of needs for training and development, career development, organization development, and/or other interventions. Now we must examine these in view of their importance to our organizational goals, realities, and constraints. We must determine if the identified needs are real, if they are worth addressing, and specify their importance and urgency in view of our organizational needs and requirements (4). For example (5):
Cost-effectiveness: How does the cost of the problem compare to the cost of implementing a solution? In other words, we perform a cost-benefit analysis.
Legal mandates: Are there laws requiring a solution? (For example, safety or regulatory compliance.)
Executive pressure: Does top management expect a solution?
Population: Are many people or key people involved?
Customers: What influence is generated by customer specifications and expectations?
Step 3. IDENTIFY CAUSES OF PERFORMANCE PROBLEMS AND/OR OPPORTUNITIES
Now that we have prioritized and focused on critical organizational and personal needs, we will next identify specific problem areas and opportunities in our organization. We must know what our performance requirements are, if appropriate solutions are to be applied. We should ask two questions for every identified need: (6)
Are our people doing their jobs effectively?
Do they know how to do their jobs?
Step 4. IDENTIFY POSSIBLE SOLUTIONS AND GROWTH OPPORTUNITIES
If people are doing their jobs effectively, perhaps we should leave well enough alone. (“If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”) However, some training and/or other interventions might be called for if sufficient importance is attached to moving our people and their performance into new directions.
But if our people ARE NOT doing their jobs effectively:
Training may be the solution, IF there is a knowledge problem.
Organization development activities may provide solutions when the problem is not based on a lack of knowledge and is primarily associated with systematic change. These interventions might include strategic planning, organization restructuring, performance management and/or effective team building.