In today’s fast-paced business landscape, one thing is certain: organizations that invest in their employee’s growth and development have the upper hand. With a team of empowered, skilled individuals who are passionate about their work and equipped with the latest industry knowledge and expertise, business growth is catapulted.
And you’ll find even the most successful organizations investing billions in training their employees just to remain competitive. So how can you upskill your employees so they can help your business grow?
We’ll be showing you exactly how in this guide. Let’s start with the definition.
What is Employee Training and Development?
Employee training is a planned set of activities that empowers staff members with knowledge, equipping them with fresh skill sets and unlocking their untapped capabilities. It propels employees to become more effective, benefitting the entire company.
Now, while most companies carry out such programs every once in a while, the programs are quite critical to a company’s success. To reap the full benefits of training and development, you need to incorporate it into your company’s recurring programs and activities, being more structured and intentional about it.
Besides, training and development is increasingly becoming a top perk that employees look for and expect in an organization, alongside opportunities for growth and a good salary package. So you stand to gain much more from having it ingrained in your company’s culture.
Benefits of Effective Employee Training
Attracting and retaining top-tier employees is only one of the benefits of training your workforce. Here are a few more benefits that you stand to gain:
1. More Motivated Employees
When you show your employees that you care about their personal growth (by investing in their training), they are more likely to enjoy their jobs, increasing their motivation to work and improving their job performance.
2. Increased Innovation
In such a fast-shifting world, particularly in Africa, known to leap-frog multiple technologies (hello mobile money), you must stay on top of innovation. And how else can you do this apart from constantly training your team?
Keep your team adaptable to changes by helping them gain the soft skills needed to accept change and the hard skills necessary to utilize new ideas and technologies effectively.
3. Higher Employee Retention
As we saw earlier, training and development is a top requirement for many people in today’s job market. Having a well-structured program for your team would make your team more willing to stay on for longer. So apart from hiring new people to grow your team, you will not constantly be trying to replace employees who have left the company.
4. Increased Efficiency
Once your teams gain vital skills, they will be more efficient. They may improve how they interact with each other, reducing workplace conflict. Or maybe they learn how to serve customers better through customer service training, enhancing your company’s image in the face of your clients.
PS: Request a demo to check out Zydii’s Communication and Customer Service courses.
5. Safer Working Space
You can help your team become more compliant by training them in relevant areas. For instance, if your company handles sensitive data, they can know how to manage and share it, keeping your company protected.
Health and safety training can also benefit your company if your industry demands it. For instance, pharmacy workers can get updated training on health standards and other changing areas.
6. Higher Profits
Lastly, what could also be a culmination of all the benefits mentioned above, training is likely to increase profits for your organization in the long term. With a more motivated team, safer, more efficient processes, and increased innovation, you will see an increase in profits.
While these benefits are great, to achieve them, you will need to plan the training well, making sure that it is helpful and well-suited to your organization. And, in case you are wondering, there is no universal way to train your team. But there are steps you can take to make the most of it.
Steps for an Effective Employee Training Program
Step 1: Outline a set of Clear Goals and Objectives
Think of employee training as a road trip. You’ll need a destination in mind ahead of time so you can plan for the trip. So what destination do you have in mind for the training? Is it higher profits? Reduced time spent in production? By how much?
Set clear and specific goals that are aligned with your company’s vision to keep yourself and your team focused once the program is rolled out.
Step 2: Identify the Skills Gaps and Assess Training Needs
Before you begin your road trip, you would first figure out what’s missing. So you’ll make a list, add snacks, check your first aid kit, get toiletries, and perhaps add a trip to service your car if it’s due.
Similarly, you can take your company through a Training Needs Assessment checklist to identify the current weaknesses in your organization. Here’s a Training Needs Assessment Toolkit that you can use for step 2.
Step 3: Pick the Perfect Training Methods
So now you know which areas need support through training, the next step is to determine how the training will be delivered.
And gone are the days of boring, mundane training sessions! You know, those sessions with the stiff PowerPoints and long, boring handouts.
Today’s world needs more vibrant and engaging training methods. You can choose from multiple ways, including interactive workshops, peer mentoring, simulations, and relatable videos. The possibilities are endless!
Your chosen method depends on your available resources and your team’s needs. You can also layer up different techniques, like assigning some employees peer mentors, while also providing access to video content for the skills that need to be taught to more people quicker.
We provide a mix of learning options, including ready-made video-style training, live sessions and more tailored peer-to-peer training, so you can pick the method that suits you best.
And while you are picking suitable methods, remember that you can do the training in-house, outsource it, or employ a hybrid approach.
In-House vs. Outsourced vs. Hybrid Training: A Comparison
Outsourcing is particularly great when you want your team focused on what they do best, not creating training programs and sourcing for instructors or temporarily turning them into instructors.
In-house training is best for minimizing costs or working with confidential knowledge or knowledge that only your team members have, which would not be possible if you got an outsider trainer.
But you can also get the best of both worlds with a hybrid mix. Zydii, for instance, can help you access training instantly without creating the courses yourself. You’d also be able to incorporate peer-to-peer training where your employees can share information widely while keeping it limited to only your team members.
Once you’ve picked the method, you can then begin the training.
Step 4: Measure Success: How Effective Was the Training?
A critical step that often needs to be addressed is tracking the effectiveness of the training. Establish key performance indicators (KPIs) to evaluate the impact of your training efforts.
These KPIs need to be related to the goals you set in Step One. Whether it’s improved customer satisfaction, increased sales, or reduced time to market, connecting the training to tangible outcomes makes it easier to determine its usefulness.
But remember, the outcome isn’t always immediate. You can’t train people on teamwork and instantly see all conflicts and communication bottlenecks magically melt away a day after the training ends. So give it an appropriate timeline, and view the changes over time to better understand the programs’ effectiveness.
Making it Sustainable: Training and Development as Company Culture
Once your employee training and development process is checked, you can work toward making it a recurring activity. You know the famous saying: Learning never stops? Well, your team upskilling needs to become a continuous process embedded into your company culture to reap its long-term benefits.
With those key steps, you are now well ahead of your peers, armed with the knowledge you need to take your team to the next level. So go on ahead and take the first step.
And if you’d like to simplify the learning process for your team and gain access to hybrid training, don’t hesitate to contact us for help.