A common reason for 40% of employees to quit is the lack of professional growth. At the same time, enterprises that are losing valuable human resources continue to save on training and remain with a low-skilled workforce.
The learning and development (L&D) process within the companies, however, is one of the driving forces of the business. Its role is still underestimated. In this article, we'll look at what's happening in the employee education market and how beneficial for your business can be employee training.
Most often, the internal L&D process takes place through the learning management system (LMS), a software-based platform using which it is possible to plan, conduct training, and assess results. The LMS market is expected to grow by 20% and reach $28.1 billion by 2025.
Taking into account the fact that many industries are going online and competition is increasing, such growth is reasonable, as well as the demand for qualified personnel. Today training is one of the key investment areas.
And yet there are still enterprises which neglect employee training. What are the main barriers to using it? Despite the obvious benefits of L&D, the main sources of concerns according to the IBM report are misunderstandings about the cost of the available tools and how to measure ROI (return on investment). There are also difficulties in applying the L&D and a lack of specialists to set up the process. According to C-level people, “It's easy to see the potential of many new tools, but it's rarely easy to integrate them with the organization's existing systems”.
What are the TOP 9 business benefits from investing in L&D?
Implementing the right L&D approach increases business KPI and employee efficiency. According to the research, 42% of hired employees, when choosing a job, perceive the opportunity to learn and develop within the company as its convincing advantage.
Association for Talent Development says those companies that provide employee training receive 218% more revenue from each employee and their profits are 24% higher compared to those that save on training.
The advantages of using L&D are persuasive. Let's look at them in more detail.
Employee retention and motivation
Employee retention is one of the most difficult challenges for employers, requiring time and money. The employee development program can simplify it. Professional growth can be a strong advantage for potential job seekers compared to other employers. The development program makes employees more loyal. They are not tempted to quit if they feel valued within the company. Moreover, such a company reinforces its reputation as a responsible and caring employer, it is chosen as a partner by the best businesses on the market.
Attracting the best talents to your company
Making L&D a priority will attract millennials to you. The millennials are now the largest generation. Almost 60% of them say it's important to have the opportunity to grow and learn while working. By promoting the values of knowledge and progress, the company will attract applicants with similar values that embody the very idea of continuous development, which is crucial in an era of rapid change.
Promoting from within instead of hiring externally
Promoting staff from within is a much more profitable idea than hiring externally. People who have been working with you for a long time know the company's business inside out; it is easier for them to cope with more global business challenges. And yet, before appointing current employees, it is necessary to determine if they are ready for professional growth.
Identifying & bridging skills gaps
The next step is to develop a training course that takes into account the skill gaps of each employee. This should not be a typical training course, but a system of knowledge acquisition and skills development aligned with the business goals of the organization and the abilities of the employee. Skills gaps should be identified and addressed through professional L&D tools, e.g. LXP. It is also possible to cooperate with universities and professors.
Reusable knowledge base
Reusing training materials saves time and money. The knowledge base, which was developed once, can be reused more than once in the same form or extended with additional materials. A reusable knowledge base can consist of training quizzes, articles, research results, experiments, working situations, supported by examples of right and wrong decisions. The knowledge base should be well structured and searchable to quickly find the answer to a hot question or to involve new employees in the training process as soon as possible.
Assessing learning and providing feedback
Unlike the traditional summative assessment (after completing the course), formative assessment is more effective in terms of the corporate environment. The idea is for employees to receive a constant assessment of their knowledge progress, as well as feedback from mentors. This approach allows for faster identification of skill and knowledge gaps and a focus on areas that are more useful, enjoyable, or requiring more attention. The business benefits of assessing learning and providing feedback are a reasonable allocation of resources. The training content can be adjusted upon request to meet the needs of the business and lead to a more qualified workforce in the subject matter required.
Building relationships and improving communication
Constant feedback and topic-related discussions result in clear communication within the company. When properly organized, L&D promotes joint learning and experience sharing, increases employee involvement in the company's life and makes the company's culture more open. Those employees who were not previously involved in the team's life can now become part of the team that is interested in their growth. Conversely, highly skilled specialists can share their experience, which also contributes to improving communication.
Conflict and task management
L&D prioritization reduces the risk of conflict or helps effectively resolve conflict situations. Staff involvement in the training process helps bring them closer and strengthen interpersonal relationships. Potential workplace issues are not ignored as before, but discussed. As for task management, department heads can more intelligently distribute tasks depending on the workload and qualifications of specialists.
Learning and development is an ongoing and future-oriented process. The content of the educational program will be influenced by such issues as what the clients may need and which people should hold management positions. The learning process is closely linked to market needs and the speed at which they evolve, so a visionary approach is vital.
L&D requires a business to invest and at the same time provides a high return on investment. The main business advantages of L&D include optimization of the company's resources.
Employees receive knowledge in accordance with the set business objectives, and individual training programs in the company contribute to the successful recruitment of the most talented staff. As a result, a highly qualified workforce allows the company to successfully meet the needs of its clients and strengthen its leadership position in the market.
Those companies that do not want to face a shortage of qualified personnel in the future should already now take care of setting up a continuous process of employee education to meet the rapidly changing market trends.
Roman Zhidkov is CTO at the DDI development company. Roman is responsible for DDI’s technology strategy and plays a key role in driving new tech initiatives within the company. He understands the context of the technology in terms of other technical areas, the customer’s needs, the business impact, and the corporate strategy.