by Brian Desautels and Jane Brenneman

Since 1962, ISPI has been an amazing professional home for individuals focused on improving organizational performance through human performance. Human Performance Technology (HPT) has provided and continues to provide a systematic approach to improving human productivity and competence. To that end, the learning and development professionals have grabbed the HPT banner with gusto and have lead the successful use of the HPT principles and practices. Yet, not all human performance gaps are due to knowledge deficiencies. Some gaps start before the employee is even hired through the mis-articulation of the job to be performed, or the misalignment of the organization’s structures and processes. Other gaps occur when the organization’s reward system works at cross purposes with its stated mission, values, and commitments. And, performance gaps remain unchanged due to the faulty feedback practices used to evaluate the individual and collective group’s contribution. In reality, HPT encompasses all organizational practices and services that serve to enable the achievement of the organization’s short and long term goals and objectives.

Imagine an organization in which all who are responsible for achieving the mission, goals, and objectives, through the performance of people, have a baseline understanding of HPT. What potential would it unleash to have a common language, understanding, and application of HPT! Imagine what would happen if HR, the function responsible for designing and delivering the systems to attract, develop, and retain the organization’s talent, had a deep understanding and disciplined practiced of HPT. Imagine the Instructional Designer and the HR Generalist working together with the issue owner to optimize the performance of the system.

Like the Finance Department whose responsibilities are to optimize the organization’s monetary investments, HR needs HPT to optimize the organization’s human capital investments for their highest rate of return. As articulated on the ISPI website concerning HPT’s global advantage, “Although training and education are critical to increasing competitiveness, meeting the educational challenge is only part of the answer. An effective human resource system needs an outstanding learning system, but it requires more; it requires a focus on performance. To improve human performance, we must manage the performance improvement system. That system must be the core of an organization’s human resource efforts if it is to maintain its competitiveness in the long run.”

We’re asking Instructional Designers who report in to HR, and consultants whose practices touch Corporate HR functions, to help ISPI add the HR constituency to its family of HPT practitioners. Let’s help HR help us apply our technology by encouraging them to attend ISPI’s newest program: Developing a HR Optimization Plan. This two-day program customizes the Principles & Practices Institute to fit the HPT knowledge needs of a high-level HR audience.

Help HR help us in our endeavor to install HPT practices inside organizations. Encourage them to attend this ISPI program, being held in Chicago, September 9-10, 2013. For more information, please click here.