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Perhaps the most predictable benefit of the standard, given the emphasis on evaluation of training and development as a part of the IIP process, was in training. All the organisations noted changes in this area: in documentation if not in delivery. Three organisations explicitly identified more directed spending on training, leading to cost savings, one company said that the most important direct financial benefit was the reduction in the cost of training, another set out with this in mind.

This last company identified unexpected benefits in fuel cost reductions, for example, through training for new technology, while their HGV drives became more efficient in their operation, allowing more journeys per week. One company, itself involved in the training environment, commented that: There had never been a problem in recognising the benefits of training as being a good thing, but we saw the need to be more “systemised” and formalised across the company and monitor what is happening.

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Staff development systematised, linked to appraisal system. More directed training means cost savings, more individually focused; reflects better communications and evaluation, people with flair are identified and trained in specific areas. Helped in making training more efficient and cost effective because of better evaluation and targeting Unable to offer large salaries, training and education offered instead Transport more efficient. Plant fuel costs reduced. Training budget more directed. Communication and employee responsibility

There were benefits to be derived from IIP through improvements in communication flows within their organisations. This was manifested by an increased openness to provide suggestions, highlight problems, even simply in asking managers and supervisors what to do to effect a solution if a problem arose. Increased staff awareness of role, staff self-sufficiency, savings of 8-9 per sent “archieved by passing the decision-making process to a point closer to the customer”, “every member of staff has a voice”.

Staff now take more responsibility for their work, each member of staff understands financial responsibility, systematic communications systems introduced. More employee awareness of financial aspects of role, higher levels of cost consciousness, communication imporoved; staff meeting and newsletter, more openness. “all the people in the organisation can effect change- even a placement student can have an impact, more rigour and openness” More teamwork. Problems are now highlighted.

Up to date staff improve service. Improved motivation among “blue collar” staff. Reduced maintenance needs Employees more open and questioning Employee relations improved Reduced labour costs Staff productivity increased, reduction of staff by one sixth. Company was more robust, staff levels reduced by 50 per cent, productivity increased although “bottom line not changed”. Absenteeism lower: staff “more into the company, and have more confidence” Improved productivity: staff reduced by a third in one area “vastly improved” absenteeism

Other Very positive on business benefits ( cost savings), perceived improvement in competitive advantage, increase in innovation/suggestions Increase in client care, but did not specifically ascribe business performance directly to IIP. “No discernible impact on business performance” Staff valued in external labour market, organisation perceived as quality player The process added 20 per cent to net profit, employee awareness has reduced errors and returns

Gained at least one customer through strong training procedures Good for marketing: when customers ask about ISO 9000, IIP generally satisfies them Comments Main motor for change was company restructuring Used IIP to rationalise company, “IIP was a framework for taking the company forward” Formal framework for desired national changes, standard used to test belief in existing training system Standard used to test belief in existing training system, confirmed what they already knew Train to be managing effectively

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