Why Companies Should Invest More in
Learning and Development Programmes
Business environments around the world are witnessing rapid change, thanks to technological advancement and a rapidly changing social and economic landscape. Unfortunately, employees have failed to keep pace with these changes, often falling short in attaining new skills including technical skills and employability skills. This has created a massive skill gap and dissatisfaction in employees as well as employers. One way to bridge this gap and address the learning deficit successfully is when companies invest their resources in learning and development of employees.
Unfortunately, this is easier said than done. Companies are often in a Catch-22 position when it’s related to employee training. Apart from the cost, a common concern among employers is that once the employees have gained the requisite skills they will move on to greener pastures. However, as Henry Ford once said, “The only thing worse than training your employees and having them leave is not training them and having them stay.”
In this article, we discuss some of the advantages of learning and development programmes and why your company should immediately invest in it.
Increase in Employee Engagement and Productivity
One of the primary reasons why investing in learning and development programmes is because it increases employee engagement. This, in turn, improves their productivity and performance. Employees who are trained well are more likely to produce better quality work in a given period, thus maximizing their return on investment and reducing mistakes.
Enhances Employee Skills
Having a structured skill training programme in your organization helps in strengthening and bridging the gaps in professional skills that your workforce may otherwise be facing. For example, with the advent of cutting-edge technologies in Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning which companies are increasingly adopting, employees are left without the requisite skills to adopt these technologies. Learning and development programmes ensure that everyone is on the same level and has the requisite skills to work without supervision.
Improvement in Employee Retention
Employers face great hurdles in employee retention, with dissatisfied and disengaged employees leaving their jobs. Employee replacement cost can affect a company’s market position, revenue and profits. One way to avoid this is by investing in employees.
Unlike the common misconception, training your employees does not mean that they would leave the organization for better opportunities. The investment that the company makes in learning and development helps in improving employee morale and shows then that they are valued in the organized. When employees feel challenged and appreciated, they are less likely to leave an organization.
Meets Business Needs and Requirements
When the employees are trained well and possess the requisite skills to adapt to a changing market, they’re able to deal with business requirements effectively. While the price of training may seem exorbitant upfront, it boils down to the choice between spending on the price of learning or paying a price by losing out on opportunities in the marketplace. This also helps in serving strategic priorities. For example, if the company wants to launch a new product or service, training can equip people with the skills and knowledge to succeed.
Reduces Supervision and Direction
When the employees are trained well, they are able to handle their tasks without the need for constant supervision and direction. The product and service quality improves drastically as employees can address customer needs immediately. Moreover, ongoing training and upskilling enable employees to hone their creative and leadership skills and to come up with creative ideas. This allows the business to operate efficiently in a saturated market and set the business apart from the competitors.
Skill shortage is a reality today. So, whether you’re a startup or a leading organization forging your way in the competitive market, it’s important to focus on training and making the investment in your employees. Some ways that employers and HR teams can invest in computer and technical skills training, soft skills development and leadership training. Apart from in-house training, online self-paced courses in topics such as Machine Learning, Cybersecurity, and Finance can make it easier for busy professionals to expand their knowledge base and overcome business challenges.