Did you know that, in the U.S., engaged workers only make up 32% of the workforce? That figure reflects a considerable drop of 4% from 2020 when there were 36% of engaged workers. As for the rest, they’re either actively disengaged or not engaged.
A lack of growth opportunities is one of the chief reasons for that decrease in engagement. It’s also the top reason cited by 41% of U.S. workers who quit their jobs from April 2021 to 2022.
Those are good enough reasons to consider investing in employee skill development programs.
But how exactly can such training programs help employees and employers? What benefits do they bring to the table for both parties?
We’ve rounded up the top answers in this guide, so keep reading.
Happy Talents Who Stay
Many employees want to work for firms that invest in their education and development. According to statistics, 45% of workers would stay at such companies longer. Over 9 in 10 also say well-planned training positively affects their engagement.
Well-planned training programs make workers happy because it helps them develop new skills. Others allow them to hone their existing skills. Either way, this boosts their qualifications, helping them climb the corporate ladder.
The keyword here is “well-planned,” which means the programs must suit the trainees. Employers can determine this through career path consultations with their people. These “pep talks” or meetings alone can make employees feel valued.
Suppose you run a software development company and wish to train your developers. One option is to ask them if they want to undergo training in programming languages such as REXX. You can check out this management software guide for ideas on which aspects of REXX to train them for.
Alternatively, you can ask your talents about their personal training preferences. However, be transparent and tell them they should also be able to use what they learn in your firm.
Simplify Talent Acquisition From Within
Almost half of polled hiring managers in the U.S. say they can’t find qualified workers. This problem is primarily due to a lack of applicants and limited candidates.
Employers can reduce the need to hire externally if they know how to train someone at work. This can help them avoid the stress and challenges of finding qualified workers. After all, they can already train existing talents with the potential to fill a job opening.
An example is if you plan to contract with a social media manager in a few months. However, you already have an employee with an advertising and marketing background. In this case, consider offering the position to this worker and tell them about the training.
If they accept, you no longer have to outsource or look for an external hire. You can also save money by avoiding the expenses associated with recruitment.
Address Skills Gaps
A skills gap is a mismatch between the skills workers have and those their employers need them to have. For instance, an employee may have excellent written communication skills. However, their employer also expects them to have strong negotiation skills.
Such gaps are problematic for both sides and can result in disputes. Employees may feel so much pressure and stress that they might feel quitting is the best option. Employers may also feel stressed because their mismatched workers aren’t being productive.
Employee skill development offers a solution that can benefit both parties.
Workers can develop the critical skills their employers want them to have. This also helps them stay competitive, especially if these skills are sought after. And when they know their skills are in demand, they’ll likely perform even better to prove their worth.
It’s also a win for employers since they can prevent their talents from leaving. They also know their upskilled workers can contribute to their organization’s growth. And again, they can save on costs since they no longer need to do external hiring and recruitment.
Better Employee Morale
When workers know you’ve invested in their growth, they’ll likely feel more motivated. They may look forward to going to work every day on time and feel excited about the prospect of training. This can then translate to increased employee morale and worker productivity.
However, as the employer, you must also stay true to your promise of skill development.
One way to simplify that task is to use employee training tracking software. It lets you check where your workers’ skills stand, their strengths, and weaknesses. You can then create a program tailored to the training requirements of each member.
You can also invest in an online training tool for programs taught in a classroom-like setup. This can save your firm on training expenses (e.g., equipment and venue rentals). It can also be more favorable to trainees as they can complete the program regardless of where they are.
Improve Workplace Safety
Over two million non-fatal job injuries and illnesses occur in the U.S. private sector yearly. Some are direct and indirect results of a lack of safety training and skills.
Almost all employers, under the law, must provide workplace safety training.
However, you can take things a notch higher by offering safety skills training, such as first aid and CPR. These are lifelong skills that your people can use to save lives in and outside work.
When workers know someone trained can aid them if they get into an accident, they may feel safer at work. This can make them feel more at ease and engaged, helping boost their productivity.
Everyone Wins With Employee Skill Development
Employee skill development is worth it because it can benefit both sides significantly. For one, it lets employers retain precious talents. It’s also more cost-effective than looking for, hiring, and training new workers.
Workers also acquire new or hone existing skills, boosting their competitiveness and productivity. Most importantly, with safety skills, they can save someone’s life, be it a co-worker or a stranger.
So, as early as now, consider investing in developmental programs for your people.
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