We’ve written before about why you should pay for training courses but we haven’t addressed this question: why should you train staff at all?
Whether you’ve been in your job for a while or if you’ve just started a new one (congratulations!) the ideal scenario is that you should always be learning. Not just the steep learning curve that comes with a new task or role but the knowledge that underpins what we do and helps us do it better and smarter.
Why is staff training so important?
One word can sum this up: valued.
Investing in a staff training program is an immediate benefit to your organisation. People will do things correctly the first time and there’s the consequence of reduced waste in your business. But more importantly, your staff will know that you’re interested in them, their growth and morale.
Let’s unpack some of the other benefits:
Skills and knowledge
Choosing relevant training programs means improving the skills and knowledge of your employees to meet changes in your industry. As well as greater staff productivity and efficiency, added improvements may add to the profits of an organisation.
But it’s not just about how to do their job. Training could also include work ethics and human relations. Why? Because it shows that a company is interested in more than just the bottom line.
Undertaking training doesn’t just mean walking out of a room (or a Zoom session) with a course booklet and papers clutched in your hand.
Of course, it should improve skills and knowledge people can take away and implement in their roles immediately.
But training should also prepare employees to move into higher roles or take on more responsibilities.
Increased training also means employees are more likely to be able tackle any issues that arise in their role. And that confidence means they’ll be more likely to take calculated risks and find innovative solutions.
Although it makes sense to encourage those moving into higher roles, leadership skills training should be made available to all staff. This shows you have confidence in your people and want to promote internally.
Keeping it uniform
Businesses want to deliver consistent results. This is much more likely with streamlined work processes but also when employees undertake the same training.
In-house training is particularly valuable when numbers of staff are carrying out similar tasks and helps to deliver these consistent results. However, it’s also beneficial when delivering information based on Standards or corporate compliance. This ensures staff are all on the same page with the company’s approach.
When your employees are trained, they’ll not only increase their efficiency and effectiveness, but they’ll be also able to make better choices.
The benefit to employers is a reduced risk to materials, tools and equipment and a reduction in accidents. Making good, safe, and economical use of resources will also reduce waste.
Trained staff = less supervision
Obviously training staff doesn’t mean that supervision can be eliminated completely. And ‘learning by doing’ is the best way of embedding practices. However, pointing an employee in a direction and expecting good outcomes will happen by trial and error is a recipe for disaster.
Knowing that your staff have been through a structured, consistent, and systematic training programme means that supervision can be significantly reduced.
Knowing their why
A good training programme should also include the organisation’s goals. Employees should be exposed to the ethics, values, vision, and mission of an organisation. This demonstrates that the organisation understands its focus and direction.
Even more importantly, employees should be clear on their part in meeting the organisation’s goals. This feeling of being part of something ‘more’ will encourage staff members to do their best for the company and for their clients.
Complacency can be commonplace when an employee becomes comfortable in their role.
They could become disengaged and just go through the motions or even worse, experience burnout.
Training gives them the opportunity to shift focus and learn new ways of thinking or better ways to do their job.
This potential for innovation and creativity means they’ll feel more positive and therefore, more productive.
Support from the top
While management may understand that employee training is important, this support is critical to ensuring the success of any training programme.
According to LinkedIn’s 2020 Workplace Learning Report while 83% of executives support learning, only 27% of CEOs are active champions of it.
One way to encourage this is to ask executives to share what they’re learning with staff. Introducing the concept of learning from the top down will have a positive flow on effect and demonstrate to staff that this is a valuable time investment.
Staying on top of trends doesn’t happen by trolling through social media. Although your Twitter feed may be useful for identifying industry trends, up-to-date information can best be gained through training courses.
If courses include participants from other sectors of the industry, learning how other people carry out their jobs is incredibly valuable. In addition, gaining contacts within your industry but outside your organisation has long term benefits.
It’s often reported that staff prefer training to pay increases because it’s the training which expands their prospects. This isn’t just for their current role but for future roles which brings us to…
Reduces staff turnover
Staff training can save an organisation thousands of dollars. Recruiting and training staff is an expensive business. By providing employees with training, it increases their sense of purpose and role growth. This not only makes them feel more motivated to support the goals of the business, but it’s also more likely to make them stay.
Training opportunities also promote a positive work culture and adds to job enrichment and loyalty.
How we can help
MAS Management Systems provides a range of training courses to support the needs of lab staff and the businesses that employ them.
We can look at your staff training requirements and tailor a solution that’s perfect for your people and your organisation.
Call Maree on 0411 540 709 or email firstname.lastname@example.org and see how we can help your business be better and smarter.
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