Staff training is a program that is designed to equip employees with the knowledge and skills that they need to perform their jobs and improve their performance. It often occurs when new staff join an organization (also known as the onboarding process) but can also be part of a commitment to ongoing training and development that many organizations offer their employees.
Why is training important for staff?
There are many benefits that highlight why staff training is important:
- Ensure all employees understand how to do something properly
- Ensure employees understand safety
- Ensures employees can deliver a consistent and seamless experience to your customers
- Provides learning and development opportunities that boost morale and engagement
- Helps to develop people to follow a career path within your company
- Increases productivity
- Decreases mistakes
- Increases profitability
- Ensures all team members can contribute equally
- Can increase innovation
- Can reduce employee turnover
What happens if you don’t train your staff?
Besides the obvious issue of staff not knowing or understanding what they are meant to be doing and don’t know how their role helps the company to succeed, there are several other serious consequences if there is a lack of training in your workplace. This can include:
1. You fail to provide a safe working environment
Employers have a legal and moral duty of care to ensure that staff are safe in the workplace. Without adequate training you could be risking the health, and even the lives, of your employees. In addition you could face hefty consequences in terms of fines and penalties, as well as in litigation if you are sued for negligence.
2. Your competitors have an edge over you
If your competitors are investing in training, new ways of doing things, new technology and new equipment and providing their employees with the associated development opportunities attached to these, they will have an edge over you in the marketplace. This is especially true in industries that need to evolve and keep up with the pace of change.
3. Your staff will be unhappy and unmotivated
Employees who receive ongoing training and development opportunities feel valued and in turn have higher levels of engagement and morale. When employees feel they are neglected or don’t understand what is required of them, this can have a negative impact on their morale and they are more likely to be unhappy at work. These staff may engage in absenteeism, presenteeism or just look for another job.
4. Your company productivity will be low
In a competitive marketplace, can you afford to have low productivity? A well-trained workforce has the skills to work both productively and safely, make fewer mistakes and ensure that you have consistent quality standards.
The different types of employee training
There are different kinds of training that organizations can deliver to their employees. There isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution and the types of training will depend on the needs of your organization.
- E-learning – using online tools like videos, quizzes and articles to deliver training to employees that they can complete at any time, from any location.
- Virtual reality training – using VR, employers can help train their employees to deal with different situations and learn hands-on skills so that they can be prepared for them in the real world.
- Safety training – provide employees with all the information they need and explain the steps they need to take so that they can be safe in any circumstances, such as handling dangerous materials, operating machinery, driving company vehicles, etc.
- In-person training – the more traditional type of training where people attend a classroom style session with a trainer presenting to the group.
- Soft skills training – these are training sessions that provide employees with the types of skills that will help them interact with others well in the workplace.
- Mentorships – where an employee works one-on-one with a senior staff member who imparts knowledge and advice.
- Onboarding – when new employees join the organization, onboarding training provides them with all the information they need to hit the ground running and do their jobs.
- Training in new procedures and systems – when your company has implemented a change in the way it does things, in order for your change to be successful you need to deliver appropriate training.
- Training in new products and services – particularly for sales staff, when you launch new products and services your employees need to have a good understanding of them.
- Compliance training – many businesses require their employees to understand different regulatory obligations.
6 tips for effective employee training in 2022
1. Cater for different learning preferences
People learn in different ways, and using one method of education and training delivery will limit the effectiveness of your training. Digital tools such as interactive quizzes, video, and podcasts can enhance training for people who don’t respond well to traditional methods (long training manuals, face to face classrooms etc.)
2. Develop a consistent training program
Ensure that your training material is standardized across your organization so that all employees receive the same appropriate training regardless of their location or who their manager is.
3. Address skills gaps in your organization
Determine where there are gaps in knowledge for your employees and deliver them appropriate training to bring them up to speed. One way to do this is to send short quizzes to test knowledge and determine if your staff are knowledgeable or not.
4. Commit to ongoing training
Ongoing training will ensure that your company is competitive, your staff are engaged and you are as profitable as possible.
5. Create a culture of learning
It’s important that employee learning and development is valued and encouraged from the top down, promoting ongoing learning for all employees. Ensure managers regularly mention staff training importance and that employees have time set aside to complete any training on company time.
6. Measure the effectiveness of your training
It’s important to know if your training has worked – do people understand what you need them to understand? Again you can quiz employees to test knowledge. You can also look at other metrics such as improvements in productivity, less mistakes, etc.
Identifying and delivering appropriate training and development opportunities to your employees will help to set both them and the company up for success.
What are the benefits of training for employees?
There are several benefits for employees in receiving training. These include:
- Improved skills and knowledge
- It helps to prepare them to take on higher duties and responsibilities
- It helps them to feel valued by their employer
What are the 5 types of training?
The 5 main types of training that are delivered in organizations include:
- Safety training
- Professional training
- Compliance training
- Management training
- Onboarding training
What is training and developing employees?
Training and developing of employees involves providing them with additional skills and knowledge to improve their job performance.