PLANET bookUP ISSI conducted an impact study to gauge the effectiveness of one of its major training programs, the Planning for Expanding Business Training (PlanET) held in 2012 and 2013.

PlanET was a ve-day training program that aimed to assist small and medium enterprises in preparing business plans so they could have increased chance of being granted loans from banks and other nancial institutions.

Following are recommendations that program managers can adopt so that the training program can evolve:

1. More rigorous screening and pre-quali cation of participants
• Those who need to access loans and have plans to expand their businesses should be recruited for the PlanET program.
• Training participants should be ready and committed to take up and nish the course.
• Consider other factors such as industry, size of the business, job function, educational level and computer software literacy to ensure maximum training program effectiveness.

2. Improvements in the conduct of the training program
• Acquaint the participants with the business planning jargon and other terminologies that might be unfamiliar to them.
• Tap resource persons who are also conversant in the vernacular. • Update the SME Loan Application Template. •Smart, evidence-based evaluation should be built in in the conduct of PlanET.