GMP training solutions, 70:20:10 and the forgetting curve

GMP training solutions, 70:20:10 and the forgetting curve

Have you heard about the forgetting curve? No? Well you may have actually forgotten about it. The forgetting curve demonstrates that retention of information decreases exponentially over time, so even though you attended that fantastic GMP training solution, it may not be effective on its own. The battle training professionals are constantly dealing with is the challenge of improving learners’ retention after they have left the classroom or online training experience. We should be moving from single training events to a learning ecosystem approach that is made up of various components that work together, creating a holistic learning experience.

The 70:20:10 training model

That is where the ‘not so new’ buzz word in the training profession comes into play, 70:20:10. The model is commonly used to explain how learning “actually” happens in the workplace and is based on research undertaken by the Centre for Creative Leadership. The results of the research demonstrated that:

  • 70% of learning happens through on the job experiences (eg. Practical training, problem solving, stretch assignments)
  • 20% of learning happens from interacting with others (eg. Coaching, mentoring, collaborative learning, social learning)
  • 10% of learning happens from formal educational events (eg. Attending workshops, webinars, conferences, reading etc.)

If you reflect over the last 12 months, have you learnt something new? How did you learn it? I’m sure most of you would have read an article on LinkedIn, watched a YouTube video, had a colleague teach you something, mentored by your manager, you may have completed an eLearning module, participated in a webinar or attended a formal training course. The way you learnt something new this year is the reality of 70:20:10, but many organisations still look at training from a compliance perspective instead of building competence in their employees, and to build competence we need to maximise the effectiveness of our training offering by including activities that go beyond the classroom. With that in mind, what use is the 70:20:10 model in the GMP environment and what implications does it have for training?


70-20-10 training model and GMP training solutions


Let’s suppose you are challenged to train a production operator and wanting to apply the 70:20:10 model. Initially you will start with some formal training consisting of a combination of eLearning, workshops, webinars etc. which will address the immediate GMP content and skill gap for the new operator and enable them to on board quickly. The learner will return to their desk and try to remember all of that content for as long as possible but needs to apply their learning quickly on the job by performing tasks. There will be SOP’s and Work Instructions available to help the learner do their daily tasks and you can partner new employees with a buddy that can act as a role model, provide practical training and give immediate feedback. You may give them a list of groups they should follow on LinkedIn and set up a community of practice where the learner can ask questions in the moment in real time which fosters collaboration between colleagues and reduces the burden on team leaders and managers to respond to every question. Eventually, when they are deemed experienced, you will encourage them to act as mentor and coach for new starters, and let’s not forget, all of these learning events need to be documented or they didn’t happen.

When we use 70:20:10 as a model, it provides a way to move beyond designing courses. Instead we design more holistic, strategic approaches to learning and we see other options beyond event based learning interventions. There is plenty of research that supports the efficacy of on-the-job, social and formal training and it is in our interest to embrace this holistic view of competence development, especially in the GMP environment.

GMP training solutions – how PharmOut can help you?

PharmOut understands the effort and time required to develop a high performing team and that true competence is a combination of knowledge, skills and behaviours that are applied and measured in the workplace. PharmOut can assist you in designing GMP training solutions that are learner centric and aimed at meeting the demands of a changing regulatory environment. While formal learning structures are a core component of learning design, PharmOut designs the GMP curriculum to take the learning beyond the classroom and continue supporting learners back in the workplace. Speak to us about developing your GMP Training strategy, customised GMP competency frameworks and learning pathways.

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