Employee training: why the benefits go far beyond skill set

By Robert Half on 12th October 2017

Every industry is facing an extreme change of pace. To remain competitive, add value to customers and reach better growth, your workforce will need to have the right skills in place. That means investing in employee training.

New research at Robert Half has shown that the importance of employee training goes far beyond businesses reaching their goals. It can also contribute towards employee satisfaction, help attract skilled professionals and improve staff retention.

Benefits of employee training and development

  • Beat the skills shortage

The British Chamber of Commerce recently revealed that half of the 1,400 businesses they surveyed had faced skills shortages in the last year. An effective way to beat this deficit is to make your company as attractive as possible to candidates.

According to research conducted for our latest Salary Guide, many businesses plan to place more emphasis on offering employee training development to junior candidates to limit the impact of the talent shortage in this particular generation. This is especially true for the financial services industry.

  • Increase employee happiness

Happiness in the workplace is essential for staff retention, obtaining business goals, reaching optimum productivity and engagement, and creating/sustaining a culture of positivity. Research conducted by Groupon showed that almost a third (30%) UK professionals have taken independent measures to upskill in the past five years.

Our research shows that UK businesses are now putting greater emphasis on employee training and development to increase job satisfaction and improve retention. We found that 22% of employees in Wales regularly learned something new, followed by 16% in London and 12% in Scotland.

  • Preparing for digital transformation

Trends suggest that UK businesses are preparing to undergo a digital transformation to facilitate better productivity and more agile responses to changes in the market.

This shift to digital means that many roles need to evolve to continue to serve the business function efficiently. A survey of 200 CFOs showed that analytical, communication and problem-solving skills are top on the agenda.

Employee training plan template

Finding appropriate employee training topics can feel challenging if you aren’t sure what you’re looking for in respect to each role. Here’s a breakdown on how to start planning employee training:

  • Conduct a skills audit

Send out an employee skills audit to gauge which areas need development before you set any plans in motion. This will help you create a fuller picture and identify where the gaps lie.

  • Look at the company’s long-term goals

To reach digital transformation goals and growth targets, your company will have very specific needs. Look ahead and use your employee skill assessment results to identify any areas that require development and support in the future.

  • Measure against your employee’s career development plan

Before you set anything in stone, it’s a good idea to sit down with each employee and revisit their career development plan. Is there any particular training they’d like to do in order to reach career goals? This should also be factored into your workplace training plan.

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