Training Top 100 FAQs

Q: What is the Training Top 100?

A: A worldwide ranking of organizations that excel at training and human capital development, as determined by Training magazine. Please keep in mind that the Training Top 100 recognizes corporate training overall—not single training programs. In addition, the application only pertains to internal employees, not training for external clients.

Q: Who can apply for the Training Top 100?

A: Any company or organization can apply, as long as it does not provide training or training-related services to other organizations as its primary business. If it does, those services must constitute less than 5 percent of the organization’s annual revenue. All applying companies must either be a holding/parent company or a wholly owned subsidiary or division. (This does not apply to nonprofit agencies, government agencies, etc.). This is a global awards program, so companies from around the world are welcome to apply.

Q: When is the next application due?

A: The 2022 Training Top 100 application deadline is due at 11:59 p.m. Eastern September 13, 2021. We call this the 2022 application because the Training Top 100 Awards Gala to recognize the winners will be held February 28, 2022.

Q: How do I apply?

A: Visit https://trainingmag.com/trainingtop100/ AFTER April 15, 2021, to download the application; fill it out; and register, pay for it, and upload it at www.trainingmag.com/top100 (scroll down to the bottom of the page). All applications must be a Word (.doc or .docx) file (no PDFs). The form is a locked document and only text can be inserted in the answer blocks—no graphics, charts, images, etc. We have established word count limits for certain questions. Please observe the limits as closely as possible, as we have established them to cope with the volume of applications we receive and to ensure all applicants have equal opportunity to tell their Top 100 story.

Q: How much does it cost to apply?

A: Training magazine charges a $179 application processing and handling fee.

Q: How do I pay for my application?

A: To pay by credit card, use the link on http://www.trainingmag.com/top100 and then print out your receipt.

To pay by check, use the link on www.trainingmag.com/top100 to register your application and send the check to the address listed on the site.

NOTE: If you prefer to pay ahead of time and submit your application later, that’s fine. Please pay the processing fee via the link above and e-mail your completed application later to Editor/Publisher Lorri Freifeld at lorri@trainingmag.com.

Q: When is the Training Top 100 Awards Gala?

A: The Awards Gala (a black-tie dinner) takes place during the Training Conference & Expo; the one for the 2021 winners was held virtually February 8, 2021, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The 2022 Gala is expected to be held in person at Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort in Orlando, FL, on February 28, 2022.

Q: When was content about the 2021 Training Top 100 published?

A: Training magazine’s March 2021 issue includes the final rankings and feature stories on the Top 5 companies, plus Best Practice and Outstanding Initiative Award winners. The issue was mailed after the Training Top 100 Virtual Gala on February 8, 2021. Visit https://trainingmag.com/issue/march-2021/ to read the March issue online.

Q: When will content about the 2022 Training Top 100 be published?

A: Training magazine’s March 2022 issue will include the final rankings and feature stories on the Top 5 companies, plus Best Practice and Outstanding Initiative Award winners. The issue will mail after the Training Top 100 Virtual Gala on February 28, 2022.

Q: How do you arrive at the Training Top 100 ranking?

A: The Top 100 application is evaluated both quantitatively and qualitatively. Scoring includes 72 quantitative points and 52 qualitative points, plus up to 1 bonus point for the previous year’s ranking for a total of 125 possible points. On the quantitative side, an outside research company scores the application on five different sections as follows:

  1. Training Program/Scope (including hours of training, number of trainers, training budget, L&D involvement in business strategy) (worth 21 points)
  2. Tuition Reimbursement (worth 8 points)
  3. Training Infrastructure and Delivery (worth 7 points)
  4. Evaluation/Metrics (worth 16 points)
  5. Human Resources (including competency maps, compensation tied to training, employee satisfaction surveys, length of service and turnover, job openings filled by internal candidates, and percentage of new hires referred by employees) (worth 20 points)

On the qualitative side, Training judges (members of the Training Top 100 Hall of Fame and Editor/Publisher Lorri Freifeld) look for demonstrable Kirkpatrick Level 3 (behavior change) and 4 (business outcomes) results; progress of programs; innovation; success factors; training strategically linked to measurable, numerical business/business unit goals; corporate commitment to training; the potential applicability of best practices companywide and to other organizations and industries; and the ingenuity of outstanding initiatives (usually a fairly new program that hasn’t had a chance to demonstrate long-term results) and their potential to become best practices. NOTE: We qualitatively score how well applicants demonstrate training’s part in achieving specific, measurable, numerical (quantifiable) business or business unit goals in each of the following sections: 2.1; 2.2; Best Practices and Outstanding Initiative; 3.1; and 3.2. So the more Kirkpatrick Level 3 and Level 4 results linking training to achievement of strategic goals you provide, the higher the qualitative score will be.

Please download the Top 100 quantitative and qualitative scoring guidelines memos at the end of this article to see how questions are scored.

Q. Where can I get more information about how to measure and track training impacts?

A: Talent Development Reporting Principles (TDRp) can offer guidance on measuring training and obtaining results (necessary for obtaining higher scores on the Training Top 100 application). This industry-led initiative provides an overarching framework for measuring the efficiency, effectiveness, and impact of both specific learning initiatives and the function as a whole. Moreover, it provides a methodology consisting of a closed-loop process, standard measures, statements, and reports, along with templates, tools, and education for practitioners who are transforming their organizations. For more information, visit the Center for Talent Reporting’s Website at www.centerfortalentreporting.org and download the overview white paper at http://centerfortalentreporting.org/documents/whitepaper-overview.pdf

Q: When will I be notified if my organization makes the 2022 Training Top 100?

A: Judging will take place in October and November 2021. All applicants will be notified if they made the list or not the last week of November 2021. E-mail invitations to the 2022 Training Top 100 Gala will be sent out in December 2021.

Q: I have other questions. How can I contact you?

A: Send an e-mail to Editor/Publisher Lorri Freifeld at lorri@trainingmag.com. She will be happy to answer any questions you may have throughout the application process.

Download the 2022 Top 100 Guidelines:

Qualitative Guidelines

Quantitative Guidelines


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