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On-the-job Training: Importance, Types, And Methods

22nd Sep, 2023
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    On-the-job Training: Importance, Types, And Methods

    Many organizations use training methods to improve potential hires' preexisting skills and knowledge. Training methods vary according to the type of job, the nature of the industry, and the cost of selecting a particular training method. But training methods are primarily divided into two categories: on-the-job training and off-the-job training. Human resource management runs a training needs analysis to choose the appropriate training method.

    Off-the-job training method involves classroom learning methods such as projects, presentations, case studies, and assignments. On the other hand, on-the-job training is more about practical knowledge, involving real-time activities and increasing learning capacity through experiences. The on-the-job training method educates the employees about the company's mission statement, goals and objectives, and company policies. Organizations usually provide an on-the-job Training Course to employees to accustom them to their job responsibilities and workplace environment.

    What is On-the-Job Training?

    On-the-job training, often abbreviated as OJT training, is a hands-on method to obtain proficiency, knowledge, and skills required to ace a job in a real-life working environment. For example, an organization provides training on-the-job for new employees to get accustomed to specific devices, tools, or equipment needed in the work field. This is done with the help of practice sessions, simulations, or a fabricated training environment.

    Unlike off-the-job training, which uses presentations and assignments to teach employees about the work scenario, on-the-job training methods guide them with practical application. Employees actually carry out tasks, complete responsibilities, and do their job. On-the-job training takes place at the workshop or manufactory under the supervision of a guide, manager, or senior employee of the same department.

    The importance of on-the-job training for new employees is that they get a direct and unmediated experience of the work procedures. They get well-versed in potential challenges and responsibilities. Employees get to understand the manager's expectations from their role, how certain types of equipment and software work, and other necessary hard skills required to accomplish their tasks.

    The duration of on-the-job training depends on the nature of the work and the task management. It may last from weeks to months. The most eminent form of on-the-job training is when new employees shadow old employees. After some time, they begin to carry out their tasks under the administration of a senior manager. 

    Importance of On-the-Job Training

    To understand the importance of on-the-job training, you must first know what is meant by on-the-job training. On-the-job training has a lot of benefits in the workplace. It gives an immediate platform for gaining experience and learning new tools and features. It also establishes a routine and helps new employees to adapt to their surroundings. The following are the important features of on-the-job training:  

    1. Faster training with real-time experience

    New employees can quickly understand the know-how of the office, their duties, and the supervisor's expectations to efficiently complete tasks and improve performance levels. Off-the-job training methods require a relatively long time, and not all employees will commit the knowledge to memory. It leads to carelessness and a need for rectification. But with on-the-job training, employees can get an accurate idea of their job roles. If they have any queries regarding the same, they may clarify them in their shadowing period.

    2. An easier transition to a new job

    Industries with substantial revenue and a large volume of business, like retain chains, the hospitality industry, the manufacturing industry, and customer service, often need on-the-job training. It assists with quick transition and achieving the right amount of work efficiency. Employees can comprehend the devices and procedures in the company quickly and proficiently.

    3. Easily Applicable

    On-the-job training is a smooth and befitting method of training individuals. It does not require any setup because the employees already have a rough idea of the role and organization they are collaborating with. Supervisors and managers don't have to create presentations or conduct seminars. All they need is an expert employee willing to train new employees.

    4. Saves time

    Off-the-job training lasts months on end. In contrast, on-the-job training requires less time to accomplish more significant goals. With the on-the-job training method, the company benefits from the new employee's dedication to their role and eagerness to learn. As a result, it saves time and utilizes the same to meet other common business goals.

    5. Retain good employees

    Every industry profits from employee retention. It is possible when employees are aware of their responsibilities and the expectations of their roles. If employees are uncertain about their job, they will bring negativity and stress into the workplace. This will result in poor management and inefficiency. Many on-the-job training methods with examples help employees encounter their roles in real time and give elaborate knowledge about their job. It requires all individuals to practice and work hard to finish their tasks, removing confusion from an otherwise thriving environment.

    6. Attract the right candidate

    On-the-job training also acts as a test to help companies filter out qualified candidates for a job. It assesses their abilities and encourages dedicated employees to work harder. The employees with greater potential can out their time to use and develop more skills during this training period.

    7. Gives you flexibility

    Besides benefiting the organization, OJT training also helps the employees learn skills like adaptability and flexibility. They learn to become dexterous in any situation and gain expertise in various domains. They also develop a positive approach toward inevitable changes that occur in the workplace.

    8. Team building

    On-the-job training places like-minded employees together from the very beginning. It allows them to enlighten themselves and develop loyalty toward a common goal. In addition, it allows them to become aware of different departments in the organization.

    9. Financial benefit

    A company does not need to take special time out for on-the-job training. It is economical and time savvy as it is a practical training mode. In addition, the employees increase the company's productivity by completing the tasks assigned to them during training.

    Types of On-the-Job Training

    types of on-the-job training methods


    The following are the various types of on-the-job training methods used in an organization:  

    1. Job Rotation

    Job rotation refers to an employee switching back and forth to other jobs associated with their role and gaining expertise with various job profiles. This eliminates the feeling of mundanity and helps create interpersonal relationships with peers from different departments in the organization.

    2. Coaching

    As the term suggests, coaching is a type of on-the-job training that entails employee training under a supervisor or an experienced staff member. It is a direct training approach where workers can raise questions and receive illustrations and feedback about their responsibilities.

    3. Job instruction Training

    Here, a trainer frames a step-by-step training program for the employees. It consists of instructions and demonstrations for the trainee to carry out their tasks. It begins with an overview of job responsibilities and expected results and continues with a description of the skills required. Afterward, the trainee fulfills their duties and gains knowledge, followed by a question-and-answer session.

    4. Mentoring

    This type of on-the-job training is more prominent in managerial positions. A senior professional is responsible for guiding and mentoring subordinates to carry out daily operations. It is a direct training method that benefits the trainee as they learn firsthand skills.

    5. Apprenticeship Training

    Apprenticeship training involves long-term teaching and exercise in arts, crafts, trade, and technology. These industries demand expertise and proficiency, which cannot be gained in a classroom. Instead, it takes immediate attention and a learning process that lasts a couple of years. Some examples would be a mechanic, plumber, tool maker, or artisans disciplines.  

    Various On-the-job Training Methods

    1. Induction

    Human resource management often uses an induction method of on-the-job training to give new employees a brief introduction to the organization.  

    2. Apprenticeship

    An apprenticeship is a formal and immediate training method that uses a practical approach to art by undergoing the actual work process under the supervision of an expert.  

    3. Internship

    It provides a professional environment to learn and gain fundamental experience in the employee's field of interest.  

    4. Coaching and counseling

    Coaching and counseling involve a training method that uses a series of instructions to guide a group of individuals to obtain skills and knowledge that amplify their performance.  

    5. Delegation of authority

    The on-the-job training method refers to a practical division of tasks among a group of employees. A manager is responsible for supervising the entire operation.  

    6. Promotions and Transfers

    Promotions refer to switching a job profile and moving up in the hierarchy. In comparison, transfers involve employees' ability to transfer their acquired skills into their responsibilities at work.  

    7. Retaining

    An effective OJT training method ensures the retention of knowledge and information. In addition, new employees regard the information obtained during training as facilitating their daily activities. 

    8. Vestibule

    Vestibule training involves providing role-specific experience to employees. For example, workers who are expected to work with devices, equipment, or machinery in a manufacturing company undergo vestibule training.

    Examples of On-the-Job Training

    Some common and widely used examples of on-the-job training methods are: 

    1. Co-worker training: It is when an experienced employee trains a new employee. The experienced employee is usually someone who has been with the company for a while and knows the ins and outs of the job.  
    2. Shadowing: In shadowing, a new employee follows an experienced employee around and observes what they do. The new employee is not allowed to do the tasks; they are only there to learn and take notes. 
    3. Internship: An internship is when a student or recent graduate works at a company in their field in order to gain experience. Interns are usually not paid, but they may receive school credit. 
    4. Delegation: Here, a manager assigns tasks to their employees and trusts them to complete the task without much supervision. 
    5. Self-instructions: When an employee reads the instructions for a task and then completes it on their own, it is known as the self-instructions method of on-the-job training.  
    6. Refreshers: It is when an employee reviews the instructions for a task they already know how to do in order to refresh their memory.


    Many students or freshers with no prior work experience look forward to on-the-job training. It helps them experiment and implement their educational knowledge to practical use. This type of training entails a properly structured program that teaches them the hang of the industry. It demands effort and efficiency.

    On the other hand, employees receive on-the-job training as they move forward in their professional careers. It refers to the retention of old employees, managers, and supervisors. Employee training builds trust among both parties and encourages growth and development. It also enhances soft skills such as communication, teamwork, positive attitude, and dedication. KnowledgeHut training courses have an extensive commentary on OJT and its various methods. After all, any process that promotes the goodwill of an organization benefits the individuals working with it.

    Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

    1Why is on-the-job training important?

    On-the-job training makes new employees familiar with the organization's know-how and helps increase productivity and performance.  

    2How effective is on-the-job training?

    On-the-job training is highly effective for new employees to develop or sharpen their skills and gain real-time expertise and knowledge in their field of interest. 

    3How do you implement on-the-job training?

    Organizations must understand the requirements of trainees, manage the training leaders, create a training framework, and evaluate the job roles before conducting on-the-job training.  

    4How can you improve on-the-job training?

    Effective communication with employees and constant feedback on various procedures is an excellent way of improving on-the-job training. 

    5What is the problem with on-the-job training?

    On-the-job training is not entirely reliable. If a professional lacks skills and a desire to learn, they will execute their tasks incorrectly, leading to correction and clumsiness.


    Binod Anand

    Blog Author

    A content marketing analyst, Binod’s area of interest is EdTech, marketing analytics, and digital marketing. He is also a professional blogger and writes extensively on skill development. His hobbies include travelling, programming, and watching sitcoms.

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