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HRDF-TTT: Exemption VS. Participation

The goal here is not just to get the know-how, but more importantly, is the know-why

Taking the HRDF Train-The-Trainer (HRDF-TTT) exemption is not the same as attending and going through the final assessment. Allow me to explain why. 

In Malaysia, to be a trainer of any subject matter, it is quite essential to be certified by  Pembangunan Sumber Manusia Berhad (PSMB) or more commonly known by the acronym HRDF. Close to 30,000 employers abide by the PSMB Act 2001 – an act that was put in place to encourage employers to train their employees, and consequently, this makes up a fair size of the training market in the country. 

Sure, no doubt that some people are naturally gifted and are able to captivate the audience.  They can stand up and command the stage. This is definitely an advantage if you are doing a presentation. Added with the knowledge one has on the subject matter, it would seem like there is no need to sit in a classroom environment for 5 days and be assessed by another person to verify what you already know – that you are capable of conducting a training session. 

Education, Experience & Exposure  

The ability to train comes with experience, exposure, and education. One may have the experience of conducting training and along the way picked up what works and whatnot.  Through enough exposure, one can differentiate the dos and don’ts of training delivery. By having a formal education, one can also have the proper academic background to understand what training is and how it should be done.  

All of the above can earn you an exemption from attending the HRDF-TTT course. You save 5  days and the money needed to attend the training. 

On the other hand, for not attending the course, one will miss out the opportunity to network with fellow trainers, gain insights from the Lead Trainer, and get feedback on their training approach and strategy. Adult Learning (andragogy) theory suggests that one can learn from all angles and not just from the Lead Trainer and the training materials only. The experience of attending the 5 days course and going through the process of assessment will provide the exposure needed to benchmark one’s competency level against that of others in the industry.  

Training Know-how & Training Know-why 

Regardless of going through the course or not, once a person has the education, experience, and exposure, they would be able to conclude for themselves how training can and should be delivered.  

Attending a formal learning session like the HRDF-TTT certification course would provide a structured learning process to comprehend how to plan for adult learning, conduct Training  Needs Analysis (TNA), design competency-based training programme, deliver training, and assess participant’s competence – the 5 modules of HRDF-TTT. 

The goal here is not just to get the know-how, but more importantly, is the know-why.  

Why does the trainer need to stop focusing on what he or she wants to say, but instead focus on what the audience want to learn?  

Why does every section of the training need to have a clear takeaway lesson?  Why do organisations prefer customised training interventions?  

Why does a trainer need to factor in the assessment mechanism in their training design? 

Why this room setup, not that?  

Why use black marker pens and avoid red?  

Why training slides should not be printed to give as notes?  

Why some trainers get better deals and do better in the industry? 

Those are just some of the examples of questions one gets to clarify during the 5 days of attending TTT.  

Training Related Content & HRDF Related Content 

Besides the know-how and know-why that the Lead Trainer will share, there is also the HRDF  perspective of training.  

The HRDF-TTT certificate is mainly one of the requirements needed for employers to claim back their training expenses from the Human Resource Department Fund (HRD Fund). This is the most common reason why people attend the TTT course. The exemption letter also serves the same purpose.  

However, for those seriously seeking to be more active in the HRDF space, it is only appropriate that due respect is given to the governing body of the fund (HRDF) and attend the course to gain the understanding of their expectation of training. Any training-of-trainers-type of courses can teach you training related contents, but only HRDF-TTT will give you HRDF  related contents. It is literally as if you want to play football, you must first know the rules of football-playing and how it is different from rugby.  

Adults have Choice 

Still, at the end of the day, the choice is yours. Apply for TTT exemption or attend the HRDF-TTT  course, both serve the purpose of complying with the claim’s requirement. Whether you value the additional gains of attending a 5-day course or not, that is subjective to each individual.  We make our choices based on our ability to tolerate the consequences.

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Written By

Ahmad Fauzan Othman is the Lead Trainer for HRDF Train-the-Trainer certification course and has trained various level of employees from the private and public sector. Fauzan has been actively sharing content online since 2015 and has conducted numerous webinars which have had viewers from across the globe including Poland, India and South-East Asia. Follow him on LinkedIn.

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. AC Liew

    24th January 2021 at 11:55 am

    I don’t think HRDF will take it kindly with the implication that they are arbitrary is giving out TTT-exemptions.

    Quoting from their website, these exemptions are given :
    To encourage more individuals to be certified as trainer, individuals from various professional backgrounds are eligible for the exemption. Kindly refer to Train-The-Trainer (TTT) Exemption Application Guideline for Criteria Selection on HRDF official portal for detailed information.

    Please refer to the criteria needed to qualify : https://www.hrdf.com.my/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/TTT-Exemption-Application-Guideline-for-Criteria-Selection_.pdf

    As you can see, it takes a lot more than 5-days to qualify — from 5-years experience to associate or professorship.

    Hope my comment helps.

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