Assessing Program Effectiveness

How To Determine Program Success

It is important to assess the effectiveness of a safety program to determine what time, effort, and finances are necessary. The first step is to set a goal to achieve; do this by objectively determining what you want to accomplish. Secondly, choose content to successfully meet the objectives of the goal. From that, deliver your content so every student can be reached. Finally evaluate. Once all the steps are complete, access the effectiveness of your chosen program.


To begin, identify the goals of the program. Write desired outcomes and objectives needed to determine the success of the program. For example, goals could be to decrease the number of back injuries on the job, the number of days lost after an injury, or the amount of money spent on injuries. For help extra information, attain the previous years numbers in these areas. Here is an example: one year post the completion the SAVE A BACK program we expect a 50% reduction in the number of injuries.


The content should be based on evidence that the material presented is effective at achieving the desired goal. As in the example above, the safe material handling and movement mechanics presented are scientifically based, and have been proven to be found effective to reduce the risk of injury therefore injury.

Content Delivery

Now that youíve identified goals and content of the training, you must determine the most effective way of delivering the content so that the adult learner achieves the goal. Adults learn in a variety of ways; some are visual learners (pictures), others auditory (sound). Some learn best by doing (demonstration). Therefore, use a variety of formats to reach the largest percent. SAVE A BACK utilizes the most effective methods to involve the learner in the process, including participation, discussion and demonstrations.


Finally, evaluate the effectiveness of training. It is possible to give a short quiz (post-test) following training to determine whether the learner has mastered the content. However, if you are measuring an applied skill that results in safe behaviors, go beyond a paper and pencil quiz and identify the expected outcome, such as a reduction in the number of musculoskeletal injuries.

If training is not having the expected outcome, itís time to adjust goals, content, or delivery methods.

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