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Why More Companies Are Offering Employees Learning and Development Programs

With the Great Resignation threatening employee retainment, it is important to look into the factors that get employees to stay. More companies are realizing how education doesn’t simply end at graduation, but is a continuous human experience.

In fact, HRExecutive’s article on neutralizing the Great Resignation highlights how almost 50% of American workers would consider staying at a company if their employer provided chances for learning. More than three quarters of employees said that they would work harder if they believed that the company cared for their professional growth.

The Great Resignation is driving this push for new skills and knowledge, and companies need to realize the benefits that learning and development programs will provide for both employers and employees. Here are a few of them below:

They encourage engagement and loyalty

Offering career development opportunities helps companies retain their employees and keep them engaged. Doing so allows employees to envision a dynamic, long-term picture. In fact, the 2019 Workplace Learning Report by LinkedIn found that 94% of employees said they would stay at their companies longer if offered the platform to grow.

To provide avenues for development from the start would be even better. A strong learning culture can catch the attention of prospective hires, while a thorough onboarding program and training period would encourage them to be productive. This allows workers to see their value within the company, and fosters continuous loyalty.

They lessen costs

Some companies may think that providing training may just be an unnecessary expenditure. However, the results show otherwise.

The real unnecessary expenditure is having to replace employees who have left. Investopedia notes the cost of recruitment can build up, with an employee making $8 an hour costing up to $3500 to recruit. Small businesses especially can spend a significant amount on training new employees.

To increase retention, companies should welcome dialogue and ensure adequate compensation. Training programs encourage development and growth, making old employees want to stay and new ones want to join.

They improve their performance

The link between motivated workers and performance has also been well established all across the globe. Results have consistently shown a relationship between training and increased performance by sales or quota attainment. Trained employees better handle unexpected opportunities by improvising solutions instead of accepting the status quo.

Furthermore, learning and development programs are opportunities for the company to continuously evaluate their employee’s progress.

From there, team leaders can assess their members’ strengths and weaknesses. They can assign tasks accordingly to maximize productivity, then target workshops to address any skill gaps. Those who stand out from the rest can be flagged, then trained, as future leaders.

They’re an investment

Training doesn’t have to cost too much. Our previous post on Online Education discussed how tools, such as video conferencing, actually allow schools to reach students at a lower cost.

Such tools can also be used in companies. Development programs can employ a variety of activities or platforms. And with new tech, the barriers of time, distance, and physical space are minimized.

Better tools are also why industry leaders are prioritizing the training of employees, and not just small companies. LHH states that Amazon’s retraining package benefits workers both financially and in terms of time by saving them valuable years in the classroom. By educating those with or without a technical background, this services Amazon’s productivity margins and the workforce’s appetite for retraining at no additional cost.

Other big names, such as Seattle Genetics or Marriott International Inc., offer similar programs as well. Different industries of different fields are all seeing the crucial benefits that focusing on learning and development offer.

Training is an investment, and the numbers show that the ROI is great. That is why more companies are funding their learning and development programs, with Forbes reporting an increased budget for training from 67% of HR managers as of 2022. Here, Director of People Operations Christina Gialleli stresses the need for not just available, but relevant training that listens to the needs of employees.

It’s important that companies remember the essence of maintaining quality in the programs they offer, and do their research on what makes the most efficient training for their employees. Indeed, a proactive learning and development culture will change the landscape of how we perceive work, and ourselves.