Employee training has become more significant over the years. In 2014 alone, it was estimated that spending on training and development had risen by 15%. The truth is companies are slowly coming to terms with the fact that trends are changing and at a fast pace. Currently, the millennials fill most workplaces and they come with new demands. For example, it is estimated that more than 70% of the current employees seek and want more opportunities to grow their career. Additionally, research also shows that a whopping 87% of millennials believe opportunities for career growth or professional development are important and should be prioritized. In the U.S. alone, training and development spending grew to over $70 billion, and as more companies come to terms with its importance, this figure is expected to grow further.
Every aspect of life is changing, and anyone who is not adaptable enough will soon find themselves playing catch-up. Managers are aware of the need to reinforce and strengthen their workforce. The State of the Industry Report indicated that employers currently provide their workforce with 32.4 hours of learning. The above did not come as a surprise though because managers do acknowledge the need for training and development. In 2016, Deloitte Human Capital Trends, 89% of the surveyed executives rated "the need to strengthen, re-engineer, and improve organizational leadership" as either important or very important. Employers do acknowledge the need to close the skills gap, and many of them are increasing their expenditure on training and developing their employees.
So, this article will seek to examine the reasons why it is essential for businesses to invest in their employees' training programs.
Reasons Why Businesses Should Invest in Employee Training
Attract and Retain Highly-Rated Employees
With an employee training and development policy in place, an organization is better placed to attract and retain highly rated employees. Employees will always be attracted to places where they feel they are being challenged to improve. As already noted, a majority of current employers value their growth and therefore, will always be attracted to managers who promise to offer them growth opportunities. As already stated, 87% of millennials want opportunities to grow in their careers, and the simple fact that they make up the majority in the workplaces makes training policies priorities. As a manager, you will be in a better position to attract and retain employees if you include a training policy.
Create Promotable Employees
As a manager, you will also be able to create promotable employees or employees worth certain positions in the workplace. In every organization, workers always want to know they have advancement opportunities. Additionally, hiring from within has always been considered as the best approach especially when you are considering hiring managers. Some of the advantages include that you will know what you are getting or what to expect; you also get to hire a person or people who understand the deeper workings and operations of the company. Finally, current employees know they have advancement opportunities. The reason why employers hire from outside is at times one’s employees could lack the skills required for certain positions. However, if a manager invests in training and developing his employees, he will create a workforce which is able to take up any higher positions in the company.
Reduce Operational Cost
Employee training can also help to reduce the operational costs of your business. According to a recent Oxford Economics report, on average employers spend $30,000 to hire a single employee. The report also indicates that employers who invest in training will on average spend $1500 per employee. The two figures do not and should not even be put up for comparison because it is clear that managers will save more if they train their employees that if they resort to hiring new employees.
Create or Model Your Ideal Employees
As a manager, by training your employees, you get the opportunity to model or to create your ideal employees. Every manager or employer has their preferred type of employee. A manager knows the values and characters of the employees they want and the training and development policy grants one the opportunity to mold their model or ideal employees. Every organization has their culture and certain values they uphold. For every manager, having a workforce that is in sync with the goals of the organization as well as one which is focused on delivering or giving its best is a good enough reason to consider including a training policy. If, for example, you are a writing company and you have hired a writing assistant, it would make sense to impart them with the essence of writing. With them, unlike the accomplished writers who come with their unique styles, you can model or influence their writing to suit or fit the organization’s style.
Increases Job Satisfaction on the Part of Employees
Training and development also help to promote job satisfaction. According to a recent survey, it is estimated that nearly 40% of workers leave or seek to leave their current jobs citing lack of adequate training. This is a worrying statistic, and every manager should be wary of the above. Employees also want to feel comfortable while in the workplace. Additionally, they wish to feel cared for and that their employer has their best interest at heart. Therefore, most of them would be inclined to stay if they are being offered opportunities to grow and develop in their specialized areas. Job satisfaction levels will be high and so will the productivity.
Enhance Flexibility and Efficiency in the Workplace
Employers can also make use of their training policy to help enhance flexibility and efficiency in the workplace. There is no harm in training your employees in areas such as customer service, administration, marketing, and sales. Actually, you will be surprised of how many of them will be interested in learning duties from other fields. This will not only increase flexibility and efficiency but will also ensure your company's operations are never put on hold because you will always have people to fill in the blanks.
Knowledge transfer is also a good enough reason to include a training and development policy in your workplace. Sharing knowledge within the company is indeed essential and will help to ensure you always a team of skillful employees. It would be embarrassing if you only have one or two skillful employees and then, all of them suddenly opt to leave. Recouping the lost knowledge would be an impossible thing to do. Therefore, ensure your entire team or the majority are skilled and could be trusted with even the riskiest of exercises.
Anticipate and Prepare for the Future
A training and development policy also allows you to have an eye on the future or to be wary of the future. Forward-thinking managers are the best ones who could have run their business. These managers will always anticipate change and prepare adequately for any rainy or dry season. Having a training policy is a characteristic of a manager whose focus is on the future. It would be irrational to train your employees on areas which will be obsolete in the near future. Therefore, as you train them, you will always be wary of the changes taking place in the business environment, and you will be making necessary adjustments to the training program. Eventually, you will end with a competent team trained to last and excel even in the most unexpected seasons.
In conclusion, it is indeed logical and downright genius to train and develop your employees. If you are still in doubt, just ask yourself which of the following scenarios make sense: to spend $30,000 while hiring a single employer or to spend $1,500 on training a single employer?