Training and Development Managers

Career, Salary and Education Information

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What Training and Development Managers Do[About this section] [To Top]

Training and development managers plan, direct, and coordinate programs to enhance the knowledge and skills of an organization’s employees. They also oversee a staff of training and development specialists.

Duties of Training and Development Managers

Training and development managers typically do the following:

  • Assess employees’ needs for training
  • Align training with the organization’s strategic goals
  • Create and manage a training budget, ensuring that operations are within budget
  • Develop and implement training programs that make the best use of available resources
  • Update training programs to ensure that they are current
  • Oversee the creation of educational materials, such as online learning modules
  • Review training materials from a variety of vendors and select materials with appropriate content
  • Teach training methods and skills to instructors and supervisors
  • Evaluate the effectiveness of training programs and instructors

Companies want to promote a more productive and knowledgeable workforce to stay competitive in business. Providing opportunity for development is a selling point for recruiting high-quality employees, and it helps retain employees who can contribute to business growth. Training and development managers work to align training and development with an organization’s goals.

Training and development managers oversee training programs, staff, and budgets. They are responsible for organizing training programs, including creating or selecting course content and materials. Training often takes place in classrooms or training facilities. Increasingly, training is in the form of a video, self-guided instructional manual, or online application and delivered through a computer, tablet, or other hand-held electronic device. Training may also be collaborative, with employees informally connecting with experts, mentors, and colleagues, often through social media or other online mediums. Managers must ensure that training methods, content, software, systems, and equipment are appropriate and meaningful.

Training and development managers typically supervise a staff of training and development specialists, such as instructional designers, program developers, and instructors. Managers teach training methods to specialists who, in turn, instruct the organization’s employees—both new and experienced. Managers direct the daily activities of specialists and evaluate their effectiveness. Although most managers primarily oversee specialists and training and development program operations, some—particularly those in smaller companies—also may conduct training courses.

To enhance employees’ skills and an organization’s overall quality of work, training and development managers often confer with managers of each department to identify its training needs. They may work with top executives and financial officers to identify and match training priorities with overall business goals. They also prepare training budgets and ensure that expenses stay within budget.

Work Environment for Training and Development Managers[About this section] [To Top]

Training and development managers held about 32,900 jobs in 2014. The industries that employed the most training and development managers were as follows:

Management of companies and enterprises 16%
Finance and insurance 12
Professional, scientific, and technical services 12
Educational services; state, local, and private 10
Healthcare and social assistance 8

Training and development managers typically work in offices. Some travel between a main office and regional offices or training facilities. They spend much of their time working with people and overseeing training activities.

Training and Development Manager Work Schedules

Most training and development managers work full time during regular business hours. However, training and development managers do work overtime more than the average worker; about half worked more than 40 hours per week in 2014.

How to Become a Training and Development Manager[About this section] [To Top]

Get the education you need: Find schools for Training and Development Managers near you!

Candidates need a combination of education and related work experience to become a training and development manager. Although training and development managers need a bachelor’s degree for many positions, some jobs require a master’s degree.

Training and Development Manager Education

Training and development managers need a bachelor’s degree for many positions, and some jobs require a master’s degree. They can have a variety of educational backgrounds, but they often have a bachelor’s degree in human resources, business administration, or a related field.

Many employers prefer or require training and development managers to have a master’s degree, usually with a concentration in training and development, human resources management, organizational development, or business administration.

Training and development managers also may benefit from studying instructional design, behavioral psychology, or educational psychology. In addition, as technology continues to play a larger role in training and development, a growing number of organizations seek candidates who have a background in information technology or computer science.

Work Experience in a Related Occupation

Related work experience is essential for training and development managers. Many positions require work experience in training and development or another human resources field, management, or teaching. For example, many training and development managers start out as training and development specialists. Some employers also prefer experience in the industry in which the company operates. Increasingly, employers are looking for workers with experience in information technology as organizations introduce more e-learning and technology-based tools.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

Although training and development managers are not legally required to be certified, certification can show professional expertise and credibility. Many employers prefer to hire certified candidates, and some positions may require certification.

Many professional associations for human resources professionals offer classes to enhance the skills of their members. Some associations, including the Association for Talent Development and International Society for Performance Improvement, specialize in training and development and offer certification programs.

Important Qualities for Training and Development Managers

Communication skills. Training and development managers must clearly communicate information and facilitate learning by diverse audiences. They also must be able to effectively convey instructions to their staff.

Critical-thinking skills. Training and development managers use critical-thinking skills when assessing classes, materials, and programs. They must identify the training needs of an organization and recognize where changes and improvements can be made.

Decisionmaking skills. Training and development managers must select or create the best training programs to meet the needs of the organization. For example, they must review available training methods and materials and choose those that best fit each program.

Interpersonal skills. Training and development managers need strong interpersonal skills because delivering training programs requires collaborating with staff, trainees, subject matter experts, and the organization’s leaders. They also accomplish much of their work through teams.

Leadership skills. Managers are often in charge of a staff and are responsible for many programs. They must be able to organize, motivate, and instruct those working under them.

Training and Development Manager Salaries[About this section] [More salary/earnings info] [To Top]

The median annual wage for training and development managers was $102,640 in May 2015. The median wage is the wage at which half the workers in an occupation earned more than that amount and half earned less. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $55,850, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $180,360.

In May 2015, the median annual wages for training and development managers in the top industries in which they worked were as follows:

Professional, scientific, and technical services $113,680
Management of companies and enterprises 110,140
Finance and insurance 104,710
Healthcare and social assistance 97,470
Educational services; state, local, and private 96,760

Most training and development managers work full time during regular business hours, and some must travel for work. However, training and development managers work more overtime hours than the average worker; about half worked more than 40 hours per week in 2014.

Job Outlook for Training and Development Managers[About this section] [To Top]

Employment of training and development managers is projected to grow 7 percent from 2014 to 2024, about as fast as the average for all occupations. In many occupations, employees are required to take continuing education and skill development courses throughout their careers, creating demand for workers who develop and provide training materials.

Innovations in training methods and learning technology are expected to continue throughout the next decade, particularly for organizations with remote workers. Organizations increasingly use social media, visual simulations, mobile learning, and social networks in their training programs. As social media and collaborative learning become more common, training and development managers will need to modify training programs, allocate budgets, and integrate these features into training programs and curricula.

In addition, as companies seek to reduce costs, training and development managers may be required to structure programs to enlist available experts, take advantage of existing resources, and facilitate positive relationships among staff. Training and development managers may use informal collaborative learning and social media to engage and train employees in the most cost effective way.

Training and Development Managers Job Prospects

Overall, job prospects should be very good, particularly in industries with a lot of regulation, like finance and insurance. Job openings will stem from the need to replace workers who retire or otherwise leave the occupation.

Employment projections data for Training and Development Managers, 2014-24
Occupational Title Employment, 2014 Projected Employment, 2024 Change, 2014-24
Percent Numeric
Training and development managers 32,900 35,200 7 2,300


*Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor. Used by permission.

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