The Real Value of an Employee Development and Training Strategy

Posted by Mark Jackson on Fri, Apr, 28, 2017 @ 12:04 PM

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The Real Value of an Employee Development and Training Strategy

Many organizations that we speak with tell us that while they understand the value of employee training and development, they aren’t certain they need a formal learning management program to deliver, track and manage that training. Many of these organizations track the training they do provide in spreadsheets or even with paper files. While we can agree that any approach is better than no approach, learning management programs are ideal candidates for automation. There are big benefits to be realized from standardizing processes and automating the workflow surrounding employee training, and here we take a look at just a few of those benefits. 

Aids retention

Studies tell us that 40 percent of employees who receive poor job training leave their positions within the first year, citing the lack of skills training and development as the principal reason for moving on. Employee development and training programs help employees feel invested in their jobs and in their organizations. A well-established program ensures that employees continue to feel motivated to advance their own careers within the company, as well as to advance the company’s mission, rather than turning elsewhere for new opportunities. 

Attracts job seekers

An organization that has a standardized employee development plan reassures job seekers that the company is invested in their long-term success and advancement within the organization. Applicants are less likely to invest themselves in a company that doesn’t show the same commitment in return. A recent Bersin study noted, “Companies with career management programs are better able to attract and retain top talent, leading to higher employee engagement and, in turn, a positive impact on the bottom line.” 

Automates manual processes

If your training requirements are modest, it may be tempting to continue to use the collection of spreadsheets to track course offerings, registrations and certification renewals, but by deploying a smart learning management solution, you can dramatically reduce the overhead involved, saving money and driving efficiency. From automatic reminders to employees and their supervisors, to enrollment tracking and training reimbursement request handling, through an automated approval workflow, a dedicated learning management solution can generate a rapid and significant return on investment.   

Promotes consistency

With formalized training, you can be certain that vital functions and tasks are taught in a consistent, precise manner, ensuring that all employees receive the same information. You can of course develop your own training in house, but most organizations rely at least in part, on professionally-produced training courses. Depending upon the specific training provided, the value of such consistency may vary from improved productivity to reduced liability for the company. 

Streamlines compliance

From sexual harassment awareness training, OSHA-mandated safety training, through business ethics – it’s not just that proper training is the right thing to do, training protects your company from potentially devastating law suits and fines. A learning management solution helps ensure employees (and you as the employer) are in compliance with job requirements and the law. The software can track certification expirations, courses due, and notifications and accreditation requirements, helping maintain strict compliance and protecting both you and your employees. 

It makes financial sense

Increased revenue is a common goal across many organizations, and investing in employee training to support that goal makes financial sense. For example: 

  • The Cheesecake Factory invests an average of $2000 annually per employee on training. The chain enjoys sales of $1000 per square foot, almost double the restaurant industry average. 
  • Payroll provider ADP coaches some sales associates on managing virtual teams and time management. Those that participate had an average of seven percent growth in sales. 
  • Motorola has found that every dollar invested on training can yield as much as a 30 percent gain in productivity within three years, which has helped them cut costs by $3 billion and increase profits by 47 percent. 

For more in-depth tips on taking employee learning and development to the next level, check out our Best Practices Guide – 3 Steps to Achieve Talent Development that Drives Organizational Success

 

Tags: LMS, learning management system, Employee Training, employee development, learning management solution, talent development

6 Benefits of Using a Quality Learning Management System

Posted by Sean Pomeroy on Tue, Nov, 22, 2016 @ 08:11 AM

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Some tasks require that you have the right tool for the job. Training management is one of them. The right tool for the job: a quality learning management system.  

Below are six benefits of using a quality LMS that combined work to minimize headaches, maximize engagement and maximize results. 

1. The LMS provides a centralized, on-demand location for corporate learning and training. There’s one place to go, whenever you want, no matter your role.

2. The LMS lessens the burden on all involved in the process (HR, training managers, supervisors, employees). Your HR team won’t have to juggle a dozen spreadsheets in an attempt to manage the process. Also, all parties can see the status of training activities that are relevant to them (e.g. HR can see status for all employees, individual employees can only see their own status).

3. Delays and mistakes in the process are severely reduced. Automated approvals and notifications streamline and provide direction in your learning process, and improve communication between all parties.

4. Compliance is improved. For jobs that require certification, automatic notifications of upcoming certification expirations are sent to employees, supervisors and training managers. These notifications include courses due and accreditation requirements.

5. Superior employee learning/training experience. A well-run process helps keep your employees enthusiastic about talent development—supporting a culture of learning—while a poorly run process irritates and frustrates. 

6. Self-service learning empowers employees. As noted in Deloitte’s 2016 Human Capital Trends report, employees increasingly want to take control of their own learning. A quality LMS includes self-service training that lets your employees develop skills that they believe will help them be successful.

A quality LMS is just one key part of successful talent development. For a comprehensive look, download our article “3 Steps To Achieve Talent Development That Drives Organizational Success.” 

 

Tags: training, LMS, learning management system, Employee Training, learning & development, talent development, HR, scorm compliant, cloud based lms

5 Actions That Set Up Your Talent Development For Success

Posted by Mark Jackson on Wed, Nov, 09, 2016 @ 08:11 AM

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Talent development is an intensive and complex process that is worthwhile, if performed effectively, because of the great results you can achieve— reduced turnover, improved productivity, improved succession planning, etc. 

To accomplish these goals, you need to set up your talent development for success. Otherwise you’re program likely will be saddled with confusion, frustration and a lack of focus. Below are five actions to take. 

1. Define the required competencies for each job (e.g. soft skills, technical skills, level of experience) through a benchmarking process.

This is critical for knowing which training materials to create and/or purchase, and to know which employees should be given which training. 

2. Acquire quality, thorough, and relevant training and learning materials.

Whether created internally or from a service provider (e.g. OpenSesame), the quality of your materials has a direct role on the quality of the training—and on the results you achieve. 

3. Use a quality learning management system (LMS) to help you organize the process.

An effective talent development program requires a smooth, efficient process. The process is complex enough that it’s virtually impossible to run well without the help of technology—a learning management system. A quality LMS allows HR, employees, supervisors and training managers to know the status of training activities that are relevant to them, so everyone knows what to do. For example, HR can see the status for all employees, individual employees can see their own status. 

4. Use assessments to identify the skills and competencies employees have, and areas that need improvement.

Assessments show employees’ strengths and weaknesses in key areas, making them great tools for determining the skill and competency areas individual employees need to develop. In other words, assessments help you guide employees’ training for maximum benefit of both the employees and your organization. 

5. Create specific, reasonable goals for talent development efforts.

While these can and should be adjusted over time, having goals gives you a measuring stick for determining if your results are satisfactory or not—and if significant adjustments are needed. 

As you move forward with your talent development program, it’s important to evaluate your results for each of these actions. Have you determined the right competencies for given jobs? Are you training and learning materials of high quality and aligned with job requirements? Is your LMS working for you? Are your assessments helping guide employees’ training? Are your goals reasonable, or should they be adjusted? 

The great thing is, if you get these five actions right, you’ll be on a path to success. Of course, there’s much more that goes into talent development. For a guide that details the keys for successful talent development, download our article “3 Steps To Achieve Talent Development That Drives Organizational Success.”

Tags: training, employee engagement, Employee Training, learning & development, talent development

3 Business Imperatives for Successful Talent Development

Posted by Kimber Crumlish on Wed, Oct, 26, 2016 @ 08:10 AM

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Surveys show that employers are increasing their training budgets in order to meet their talent needs. But money alone isn’t enough to achieve quality talent development results: increased employee retention, productivity and engagement, as well improved succession planning. 

In particular, as an employer, you must meet the three talent development imperatives listed below to get quality results. 

1. You must have significant organizational commitment

Succeeding at talent development requires more than acquiring the right tools and providing quality learning materials.  Many companies fail to create a culture of learning. The consequence is engagement in the talent development process is poor, and so are the outcomes. 

How do you create a culture of learning? Take concrete actions that demonstrate the great value your organization places in talent development. These include:

  • Make training and development for all employees
  • Recognize employees who learn new skills and improve their performance
  • Hire internally
  • Give employees input in the process, and offer and encourage self-learning

 2. You must have patience with training and learning

There’s no getting around it—talent development takes time, and must be ongoing. It’s easy for more immediate priorities to take precedence, and derail training and learning activities. Prevent this by showing your organizational commitment, by insisting that training development activities move forward.

3. You must effectively manage the training process

Employees, supervisors and training managers are all involved in training, and all need to be on the same page about the training process—the current status, next steps, etc. 

This can be terribly difficult for HR and training managers to manage. Management difficulties cause delays and confusion in the process that slow talent development efforts to a crawl, and cause frustration among all involved. These problems are common among organizations that are trying to manage training with paper or Excel. As a result, it’s critical to have the proper training management tools. 

Want to get better talent development results? Read our new article, “3 Steps To Achieve Talent Development That Drives Organizational Success.”

 

Tags: training, employee engagement, Employee Training, learning & development, talent development

How Talent Development Stands Apart From Other Retention Strategies

Posted by Sean Pomeroy on Tue, Oct, 04, 2016 @ 09:10 AM

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More than two-thirds of HR professionals are struggling to recruit candidates for full-time positions, SHRM’s 2016 report “The New Talent Landscape” found. One clear takeaway: retaining employees is critical for meeting your talent needs.  

There are many employee retention strategies out there, but most come with significant drawbacks for employers and provide little or no extra rewards. Take increasing salaries. To impact retention rates at a significant level, you’d need to push up salaries significantly too. This would come at a tremendous financial cost, and the higher salaries wouldn’t do anything to help your employees do their jobs better.

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Source: Randstad 2015 Employer Branding Survey

Talent development, however, is an exception. While there are associated costs such as training materials and staff, in addition to to providing a big retention boost (a lack of career opportunities is the No. 1 reason employees say they leave an organization), it gives employers several other rewards. A few include:

  • Improved employee productivity—employees learn skills that help them with their jobs.
  • Improved employee engagement—employees are less likely to feel they are in a rut, or in a dead-end job.
  • Improved succession planning—employees are trained in skills that prepare them to succeed at managerial and executive roles (3.6 million baby boomers are expected to retire this year alone.) 

It’s no wonder that many companies make talent development a high priority: it makes sense for them and their employees crave it. According to the SHRM survey, 69% of HR professionals said that their organizations had training budgets last year, and 89% reported that their training budgets stayed the same (50%) or increased (39%). 

All this said, like most valuable strategies, talent development isn’t easy. Training is a long, complicated process that can be difficult for HR to manage, and it requires significant organizational commitment. 

But many employers make talent development much more difficult than it needs to be. To learn a common-sense method that will help you succeed at talent development—benefiting your organization and your employees—read our new article, “3 Steps To Achieve Talent Development That Drives Organizational Success.”

 

Tags: learning management system, Employee Training, employee development, career management, talent development, retention