Training Top 125 FAQs

Q: What is the Training Top 125?

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 125 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 125?

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.)

Q: When is the next application due?

A: The 2018 Training Top 125 application is due September 18, 2017. We call this the 2018 application because the Training Top 125 Awards Gala to recognize the winners will be held February 12, 2018.

Q: How do I apply?

A: Download the application at www.trainingmag.com; fill it out; and register, pay for it, and upload it at www.trainingmag.com/top125 (scroll down to the bottom of the page). All applications must be a 2003 Word (.doc) or .docx document (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 125 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/top125 and then print out your receipt.

To pay by check, use the link on www.trainingmag.com/top125 to register your application and send the check to the address listed on the site.

Q: When is the Training Top 125 Awards Gala?

A: The Awards Gala (a black-tie dinner) takes place during the Training Conference & Expo; the one for the 2018 winners will be held February 12, 2018, at the Georgia World Congress Center, Atlanta, GA.

Q: When will content about the 2018 Training Top 125 be published?

A: Training magazine’s January/February 2018 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 be handed out at the Training Top 125 Gala February 12, 2018, and will mail AFTER the Training Top 125 Gala on that date.

Q: How do you arrive at the Training Top 125 ranking?

A: The Top 125 application is evaluated both quantitatively (84 points of the total score) and qualitatively (40 points of the total score), plus up to 1 bonus point for the previous year’s ranking. 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 24 points)
  2. Tuition Reimbursement (worth 9 points)
  3. Training Infrastructure and Delivery (worth 6 points)
  4. Evaluation/Metrics (worth 25 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 10 Hall of Fame and myself) look for demonstrable results, progress of programs, innovation, success factors, training strategically linked to business 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 you demonstrate training’s part in achieving corporate strategic goals in each of the following sections: 2.1; 2.2; Best Practices and Outstanding Initiative; 2.15; 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 your qualitative score will be.

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 125 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 made the 2018 Training Top 125?

A: Judging will take place in October and November 2017. All applicants will be notified if they made the list or not in November 2017. Invitations to the Training Top 125 gala will be sent out in December 2017.

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

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

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