On the past few projects I have worked on, I have been using the action mapping approach to design described by Cathy Moore here. We have a gap analysis form that we use in our training department, and it does a good job of identifying whether training is needed or not. But it is not a robust design document. The action mapping makes it easy to collaborate with subject matter experts (SMEs) on what content will be included in the training. It also helps keep me focused on the “need to know” and what the end goal is. When you start with the goal, it gets the conversation off to a focused start and can help redirect the desire to train because people aren’t sure what else to do.
The other nice thing about the process is that it makes it much easier to plan for a Level 3 or 4 evaluation of the training. If you start with the business goal, then your level 4 metric is already determined.