For millennials, it’s not about entitlement – it’s about engagement. With more and more millennials joining the workforce, it’s time to get on board with employee training and professional development or get left behind.
Technology is important but providing employee training aimed at building certain leadership and professional development skills is vital in helping HR and Technology Managers to streamline the employee training process and keep today’s workforce engaged.
With the unemployment rate at an all-time low, many Millennials and other generations will receive multiple job offers, are you willing to risk losing more of your talent because your competitors are already doing it?
Your employee training program must equip your managers and employees with the right skills and competencies to succeed while demonstrating real business value – proficiency leads to results.
Making Employee Training and Professional Development a Priority
Employee leadership and professional development is an important process in developing an organizational culture of value where employees go through training programs to enrich their skills and develop new proficiencies. Oftentimes, this means learning the hard, technical skills needed to perform the job, such as IT projects, product launches and upgrades. But most importantly, it provides the leadership and professional development skills that focus on employee engagement and performance. From making decisions under pressure and constructive conflict management to developing successful interpersonal skills, these are a crucial part in getting employees and managers to be more engaged and motivated to achieve their goals.
Training Methods to Learn
Successful employee training and professional development programs go beyond the standard new hire orientation track. One of the biggest mistakes we see clients make when implementing training programs is asking already over-extended employees to find time in their day to add training. The result is ad-hoc courses that employees occasionally take as needed while trying to the job they were hired to do. To be successful, make training a priority by allotting the right time and resources to make sure your training is strategic, organized, and well-received so that it aligns with individual growth and business goals. The key takeaways here are: consistency and communication.
Another way to get more employee buy-in is to take the time to help them understand why this training is of benefit to them. According to LinkedIn’s Workplace Learning Report, the primary objectives of training programs should include the following:
- Identify skill gaps
- Engage employees with learning programs
- Create role-based training paths (employees vs. managers)
- Educate on leadership skills
- Deliver specific ways to close skill gaps across the organization
- Properly plan for changing technologies and automation
Also, experts recommend giving employees time to process the information through reinforcement training beyond the classroom. Learning is a process and it takes time. Lifelong employee training and professional development programs result in a happier and more productive workforce, and ultimately, lead to the greatest return on investment for your organization.
Increasing Employee Retention
SHRM reports that it costs a company anywhere from six to nine months of an employee's salary to replace their position. For example, if an employee makes a $60,000 salary, then that translates to an average cost of $30,000 to $45,000 to replace that employee. Taking the time to be strategic and thoughtful with your recruiting and onboarding training results in significant time and cost savings down the road.
By leveraging the power of a strong employee training and professional development program, you can rest assure that you will be better equipped to cultivate, retain and attract top talent. This means reducing turnover and hiring costs. The bottom line: when team members feel your company is investing in their careers, they are more likely to stay.
Most importantly, training helps grow employees from within and develop strong future leaders who are invested in the company. Effective leadership is a major concern for organizations. In the 2019 Deloitte Human Capital Trends Report, 80 percent of respondents rated leadership as a high priority and only 41 percent felt ready to meet current leadership needs.
Getting Started With Employee Training and Professional Development
Effective professional development training programs are difficult to implement. Perhaps you already have a training program in place but aren’t seeing any results. Here’s how to set up a results-driven employee training and professional development program to get results:
Identifying the skill gaps. What are the pain points? What skills are lacking? What can be improved? What’s the business impact? For example, let’s say there is a need for a process improvement, or a new manager is struggling to handle conflicts within the team. Or, maybe you have employee certification requirements that need to be met in a specific department.
Selecting the right training methods. When rolling out an employee training program, the subject matter isn’t the only item to consider. The training method in which employees learn also affects their retention and ability to successfully perform on the job. Things like budget, location, number of students, type of training, and your goals all impact the learning method you choose. Here are some popular training methods to evaluate:
- Live Instructor Led Training: Live Instructor Led Training remains one of the most popular and effective learning styles for adult training and professional development. Live training allows your team to interactive with expert coaches and instructors and other students.
- Online LIVE Classes: As the preferred learning modality for our students, experience all the benefits of traditional classroom training with from your home or work office.
- Custom Training: Every business is unique, and so are your training goals. Improve your IT operations and boost workplace productivity with a highly customized training program built just for you.
- Onsite Training at Your Location: Let us bring the classroom and expert instructors to you and minimize downtime for your team.
- Online Anytime Courses: Prerecorded classes, lessons and quizzes let you go at your own pace, 24/7/365.
Measuring results. How did the course improve efficiency? Or, how did this reduce the number of recruiting new hires to fill vacated positions? Determining the value and business impact of training on the bottom line is the key to maximizing your return on investment.
Following-through on action items. After every training session, make sure employees take time to process what they’ve learned. What are the takeaways? What questions do they have? What are the action items they need to implement? This step ensures employees apply what they’ve learned on the job.
Making training a value in company culture. A positive work environment can help instill a sense of community, create transparency, and encourage collaboration amongst your employees. Millennials, in particular, want to be involved in the process of building and maintaining a great working culture. Employee training and professional development programs go beyond the classroom. You must weave follow up and reinforcement training into your company culture. According to a Deloitte study, showing young employees how their work adds value and has an impact is a great way to keep employees engaged and motivated.
Let New Horizons Help You Build a Training Plan
The complexities of rolling out an employee training and professional development program can prevent managers from pursuing learning opportunities for their teams. As the world’s largest independent training company, New Horizons South Florida offers custom corporate training programs and courses to fit every business need, from executive leadership training and professional development to advanced technical skills and certifications.