Career Path in Training and Development

Career Path in Training and Development

(In reference to the book “An overview of Training and Development: why training matters” by Saul Carliner and Margaret Discroll, chapter 10)

Saul and Margaret have explained two general categories of professionals in the career path of Training and Development. Namely:

  • Individual contributor – people who are expert in the field but not interested in the managerial role
  • Management – these professionals aims at the management post

Saul Carliner and Margaret Discroll in their book, has divided the career path in Training and Development in four levels.

Level 1 is referred as the Entry Level which is for the people who have just entered the field. Generally, here the level of experience required for these professionals is zero to five years of

experience. Job posts available are training administrator, junior instructor, junior instructional designer, junior subject matter experts (SME) instructor and junior SME instructional designer.

Level 2 is the Intermediate level, where the typical desired number of years of experience is two to ten years. The intermediate professionals generally come from the entry level after promotion, where their job role comprises of being an instructor as well as deigning the instruction with learning technology. It should be noted that, the above two levels are primarily intended for the individual contributor.

In Level 3 we are talking about Advanced level with minimum five to 20 years of experience. The advanced role includes both individual contributor as well as managers. Roles like senior instructor, senior instructional designer and learning consultant are individual contributor roles, whereas management role comprises of manager or supervisor and project manager.

Lastly Level 4 is the senior level. It requires experience of more than fifteen years. Here the individual contributor acts as consultant and management as training and development leader.

Saul and Margaret have also explained that the movement of Training and Development career is not necessarily straight forward moving, in fact it is seen that the professionals move from different job posts sometimes in the same organization sometimes to other organization. This gives them a broader sense in experience along with in-depth knowledge. For example, a professional may move from role of instructor, learning consultant, instructional designer and learning technology specialist.

It has also been observed, often professionals in third or fourth level of their career moves back and forth between the role of individual instructor and management role. The reason behind this can be pace of the job role or the change in the job role itself to eradicate monotony.

A job role of Training and Development can be of full-time or part-time. In accordance with the organizational needs as well as professional choice there can be flexible hours of work, part-time and job-sharing positions and sometimes an option of not to work for certain period of time.

To summarize the movement of professional from level 1 to any other levels, it is always a personal choice of an individual. Career is something that an individual aspires for; hence whatever aligns with their desired goal will reflect in their movement of their career path.

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