Focusing on your employees’ professional growth and development is vital for business success. It is also a good career growth strategy if you’re the head of a business unit. But have you ever wondered why training is such a key driver for success or how it can boost competitive advantage?
Today’s fast-paced and ever-changing business world needs smart and consistent training programs to keep up with new challenges. According to Fortune’s ‘100 Best Companies to Work For’, highly successful organizations are committed to employee development as a top strategic priority. Their employees are considered the company’s most valuable asset, and investing in their training further enhances their capabilities and productivity.
Training creates a multitude of benefits for the company. Call center and service-oriented training lead to better customer experience and brand loyalty. Sales and product knowledge training lead to increased revenue and industry presence. Learning also generates new ideas and inspiration, potentially leading to the innovation of new products and services.
Of course, there are many more ways that training and development can positively affect your business and give you a competitive advantage in the corporate world. Here are some of our favorites…
Ensures employee retention and job satisfaction
A good learning plan builds a stronger, more positive relationship between your company and its employees. Studies have shown that thoughtful and consistent training is directly linked to staff motivation, reducing turnover and increasing productivity. And of course, happy, well-trained employees who can improve their skills are more loyal to the business, work harder, and waste less time, money, and resources.
Investing time and money in employee development makes your employees feel more valued and engaged at work. It saves money overall because the cost of retaining existing employees is much less than replacing them. Research shows1 that replacing an employee can cost 50% to 60% of that employee’s salary, with overall costs increasing by 90% to 200%. So because of your efforts to understand and respond to your employees’ learning and career development needs, they will be more likely to stay with you for the long haul. That makes one of the best investments a company can make.
Attracts the best of the best
Every company knows there’s a greater chance of success and longevity when you have the best employees on staff. Fortunately, training is a great way to attract top talent. It’s often the critical benefit people seek during their job search, so promote your learning and development offerings in job listings and during the pre-hire and interview stage.
Make sure candidates are aware of any career path training and opportunities for advancement well before they’ve even started their job. This creates a positive image for the company and lets potential employees know you care about their job growth and progression within the organization.
Adapts to the latest technology
In today’s corporate world, business growth demands the latest technologies. Still, with the constant flux and evolution of technology, employees must be well-trained to use this tech to its full potential. The installation of new applications often means changes in processes and procedures, which is also something that software training can quickly address. Whether eLearning, online demos, or quick start guides, tech skills training can increase revenue and significantly reduce costs.
Provides a sustainable competitive advantage
Creating a competitive advantage is one of the most important goals a company can achieve. You’re distinguishing your company from competitors in a way that can’t be replicated.
One very effective method for unearthing strategies that differentiate your organization from others is to leverage your employees as a competitive advantage. Training is ideally suited to do just that. Through learning and development programs, you can build vibrant teams of employees who feel valued and aligned with your organizational goals. With training, you can boost your team’s business acuity, and make them more knowledgeable and a force to be reckoned with. The strategies you have in place will be even more effective.
Another method is to look for skilled employees spread throughout your company and use that talent in new ways. Encourage job-sharing, mentoring programs, and leadership opportunities to enhance skills. Consider allowing employees to move around to develop different capabilities. Continue to support them with training and strategically position them in roles that can help transform the business. By doing that, you will have a talent advantage that cannot be duplicated.
Excellent and consistent training benefits an employee’s personal growth and positively affects the entire business’s productivity and profitability. You’ll find employees striving to perform better as they progress on their career journey and your company increasing its value and position in the market.
Focusing on learning and development energizes your teams and allows your business to maintain a competitive edge. And with happy employees, lower costs, and higher customer satisfaction, you’ll go above and beyond your competitors in no time!
1Essential Elements of Employee Retention, Society for Human Resource Management, October 2017