6 Tips to get Long-Term Benefits from your Employee Training
Employee training is often seen as a boring necessity (by the business and employee!) – but it can be so much more. Done right, employee training programmes not only equip members of staff with new skills, they can give staff the tools they need to improve the way that your business works, ultimately leading to better teamwork and improved productivity.
Here are six great tips for getting long-term benefits from your employee training programmes.
1. Training your employees want
One of the major issues surrounding employee training is that it is organised without consultation from the people who will be taking the sessions. This can lead to employees being disinterested or disengaged from the topics, and ultimately, they won’t be in the best place to learn anything new.
It is a much better idea to focus on training that your team actually wants. Send around a staff questionnaire regarding aspects of their knowledge or skills they would like to improve. You might be surprised by the results - they may be completely different from what you were expecting.
2. Work with a specialist training service
What makes a great employee training session often comes down to the service provider you choose. Avoid training services that claim to offer a huge array of options – especially if it is a one-person operation. These are most likely jack-of-all-trades-style training programmes that won’t actually offer tangible benefits.
When you are scouting out potential options for training providers make sure that you establish whether the company has official accreditations. This can be a way to determine quality.
“We let our credentials speak for themselves,” says Christos Panayiotou, Director at Trade Skills4U “accreditations and memberships from organisations like City & Guilds and NICEIC tell customers so much more about our business than we could.
3. Update knowledge
It may be the case that you have used the same training provider for a long time and you have historically been very happy with their output. But the fact is that modern businesses need to move with the times. Take an issue like cyber-security training – the techniques and tactics of cyber-criminals change so frequently that using the same training from even a year ago will be out-of-date.
It is vital to make sure that your training provider is regularly updating their output to take into account these changes.
4. Make training fun
Training shouldn’t be a chore. There is evidence to suggest that employees – and especially millennials, actually want their employers to provide them with more training. But that doesn’t mean that those training sessions need to be high-intensity classroom-style learning. Many innovative training solutions providers offer diverse training programmes that can be highly engaging.
Whether this is through interactive sessions utilising audience response systems or making use of multiple training methods such as e-learning, there are many things that you can do to make your training sessions for fun for staff. This will ultimately reward you with greater levels of information retention.
5. Get everyone involved
Good training sessions get everyone involved, and that includes managers. There are some who prefer to suggest that they don’t need any further training to do their job – but when managers are involved it benefits everyone.
Not only do they learn more about the subject (and improve on their own skills), they can also provide employees with valuable support throughout the process.
6. Offer training across different departments
It can be easy to assume that the best course of employee training focuses members of staff at excelling in their specific discipline. But it is actually the case that employees (and, indeed, your business as a whole) can benefit enormously from cross-department training.
When employees have the chance to learn more about what their colleagues do, it not only gives them a wider understanding of the business. It can also give them ideas to improve productivity or inter-department work.
Make sure that any kind of training programme that you run at least covers the basics of how other departments work. This insight can be extremely valuable for staff.
Employee training should never be dull or a basic formality of working. It should provide staff with new skills and give them ideas and skills that can contribute to the company. Investing in high quality training will reap rewards in the long-term for everyone.