The strategic importance of continuous training
If there is one thing that many sectors have in common in this economy, it is that new developments constantly succeed one another. Markets change and organisations that do not adjust their strategy on time, live to regret it. In such an environment, continuous training is a tool that should not be underestimated. How can you ensure training to be strategic?
The E-learning Market Trends & Forecast 2014-2016 Report has emphasised the importance of a corporate strategy where new expertise and skills are obtained continuously, in order to stay ahead of competition. Such training programmes are, however, less effective without fitting technological support, according to the report. The strategic influence of continuous online training and learning is based on three principles:
1. Continuous training means quick adaptation
New developments ask for new skills within the company. The faster these developments succeed one another, the faster new skills have to be acquired. Establishing a new training programme each time, seems inefficient. It is more effective to introduce new skills in an existing, continuous training programme. For example, if the market asks for more attention for the customer, employees would immediately find some customer orientation excercises in their weekly video role-plays.
2. Cost reducing and improving quality
Online training gives insight into where you are at on an individual level, because an overview with scores on all competences, provided by self-assessment, managers or coaches, is available at all times. Employees can see what skills and knowledge they are required to have, so they will be motivated to develop themselves. For example, a promotion that requires the employee to be able to demonstrate that they are skilled in a particular area, will result in a higher intrinsic motivation and a better flow within the organisation.
The importance of internal promotion is emphasized by the Lifelong Education and Labor Market Needsresearch, which showed that 64% of externally attracted managers leaves the organisation within four years. If continuous training lowers the necessity of external recruitment, this is cost reducing and improves quality in the long run. Remember the famous anecdote where a manager asks himself: “What if we train our people and they leave?”, followed by the reply, “What if we don’t, and they stay?”
3. Insight in costs and revenue
The insight in levels of skill also means that the organisation has an overview of the revenue of continuous online training. The organisation will have more control over the training budget and will be able to explain what the investment has meanton an individual and collective level. This brings training to a strategic level as well.
What possibilities of a strategic influence of continuous training do you see? Do you have any experiences yourself? Comment!
TrainTool brings soft skills in your organisation to the next level. The only way to develop and maintain communication skills and commercial skills is practice. TrainTool offers unlimited online practice and objective level measurement. This way, we systematically help organisations to reach a higher level of competence.