Employee training is a big business. In fact, $92.3 billion was spent on corporate training and development across the United States in 2020-2021 (according to Training magazine’s 2021 Training Industry Report
). Employee training, whether in the form of large seminars, in-person sessions, live webinars, or pre-recorded online lessons, is truly important to employees, and it should be important to employers as well.
There are four key benefits to providing training opportunities to personnel:
Maintaining or increasing profits is crucial to succeeding in business. According to research by the American Society for Training & Development (now named ATD: Association for Talent Development
), when employers spent an annual $1,595 per employee on training, their profit margin increased by 24%. Secondly, during a talent shortage, it is especially important to remain competitive in attracting and attaining talent. A 2019 study released by Axonify
reported that 76% of respondents say an employer would be more appealing to them if it offered skills training to its staff.
There are various reasons employees move on to other career opportunities; however, providing training to employees is one practice closely tied to retaining them. Many employees cite professional development opportunities as one of the most important aspects of company culture. According to LinkedIn’s Workplace Learning Report
, companies with a culture that gives employees access to learning opportunities are able to retain them for nearly twice as long as companies that do not.
The same research by ATD (cited above) found that companies that offer comprehensive training have a 218% higher revenue per employee than organizations that do not. While the curriculum was focused on overall job performance, there are also many training options specific to productivity. Topics include organization, time management, and prioritization.
Numerous employees consider their organization’s career advancement opportunities a very important factor in their job satisfaction. Of Millennials surveyed, 89% say they are interested in future-focused training; 81% of Gen Xers are too. Providing career development training can help an organization identify individuals for newly created roles or positions that become vacant due to the departure of team members, including those who retire.
If you are sold on the concept but unsure of how to get started, here are eight foundational and sequential steps to help you begin a training program from a solid position:
Secure the support of top management and use that support to encourage and motivate other team members to participate in the program.
Align training with greater goals. Consider what the takeaways and learning objectives should be and how they contribute to achieving the goals of individuals, their departments, and the organization as a whole. Be prepared to answer the simple but strategic question: Why?
Name the individual(s) responsible for each component of training. It may be one person or a group effort and could include external vendor partners. For example, a representative from human resources could identify and coordinate the training opportunities, employees’ managers could schedule their participation and follow up with them after, and a third-party provider could be the source of content.
Combine elective training opportunities geared toward individuals with mandatory sessions for the entire organization. Suggested topics for these company-wide sessions include better business communication; customer relations tactics; technology updates related to new systems, programs, or features; and diversity, equity, and inclusion practices.
Use training as an occasion to ask employees about their interests and career aspirations. It can be a simple way to learn who is invested in the organization long term and intends to contribute to its growth.
Communicate what training is offered and in what format, the estimated time required to complete the training, whether the training should be completed during the workday or during off hours, and deadlines for completion of select sessions.
Track employee participation and performance within training sessions.
Acknowledge employee participation and performance within training sessions.
Has your organization experienced positive results by providing employee training? Please contact us
to share your insight.