Why continuous training is important for employees

We have been saying it in all our latest doctrinal contributions: that technology advances unstoppably, characterized by the speed at which it does so, but mainly by the depth that it is giving to change.

This has direct consequences on the markets, as competition intensifies. Companies that are at the forefront then understand the benefits of continuous training for employees. Simple as that! Either you train (through good education and training programs), both within the organization and outside it (ad-hoc courses and cost assumed in part or in full for postgraduate courses) or the level of personal productivity will decrease, due to hence, the company’s competitiveness will suffer.

And the rules of the market are clear: organizations that do not make an effort in education and training will not be able to maintain that level of intensification of competition (be at the same level as their direct rival competitor) and will first lose market share, but shortly, by losing the required pace of innovation that requires training, they will lose something even more important: the ability to remain a sustainable business project.

This effort has a cost and a clear return while employee training requires a substantial investment in time and capital, the returns can boost productivity, job fulfillment, drive, and overall quality of work.

Let’s see these elements that we point out:

– Regarding investment, it is not convenient to make one-time and expensive investments if the need for training and education is not incorporated into the corporate culture.

– What is convenient is to provide a budget in this regard that gradually increases year after year based on technological innovation in general, and in particular, in accordance with the needs of adaptation of the company to the changes that the sector in which the company operates is demanding.

– Returns are always conditioned to the overall productivity level of a company. If this objective has not been fulfilled or was half fulfilled, neither the fulfillment, nor the unit, let alone the quality of the work, will pass any test that the market submits to it.

If your company doesn’t have an ongoing training program in place, it may be time to invest in one and take your operations to the next level.

In accordance with what we say about an annual budget and a culture of training and education, it is the only possible way for the operation of the company to move comfortably to that other level that current marketing demands. More and more, companies are conditioned by the new demands and diverse preferences of consumers.

The fundamentals of continuous training

We are used to traditionally when a company hires, for example, 5 or maybe 10 people for its customer service, a global initial training is done to give a minimum of training so that these jobs are covered.

But in reality, few organizations understand the importance of establishing ongoing training programs designed to keep employees engaged and equipped to tackle the latest challenges in their industry. This is not solved with a course for ten new jobs in a week from Monday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Scarcely does this reveal the company, its product and / or service, its structure and work protocols, which are the areas of interest for the company and which are those in which it has unsolved problems, etc.

When proceeding this way on a job call-up rather than ongoing training, it always ends in high turnover rates, loss of competitive advantage, and missed opportunities to capitalize on the latest processes, technology, and trends.

But a small detail that is always overlooked is that talented professionals who are always motivated will look for job opportunities in companies that not only offer the salary they consider fair, but that, although initially they may be better paid, it will weigh on their decision to finally accept that position, if they perceive from the new company that it really has a training policy that allows it to train and pursue a career, that is, to be able to advance and grow.

That the candidate actually sees that he has that space for personal development. With this information in mind, you must ensure that the company offers a large number of opportunities for growth and continuous training, so that then the level of remuneration, even, you can accept it if it is lower than what you could obtain in another similar position in the competition, but without this guarantee of training that is being offered to you in this company.

Companies must design their programs to keep up with the latest industry developments while at the same time adapting to their business goals and the personal and professional goals of their employees.

This symbiosis is essential: it does not work when the training policy only pursues the interest of the company and not that of the employees. It is a two way road. Because no matter how much companies obtain a short-term benefit from more qualified people, if in the medium term it does not promote the continuity of said training, the loss will be double due to productivity and competitiveness to which it will be necessary to add the desertions of people who not see a future for personal development, they will prefer to change jobs.

Investing in continuous training: the smart choice

The excuses that many organizations do not give the importance of training is to affirm that in the short term there is a decrease in employee productivity. And this is debatable, because although it is true that you can see a downturn for a few days, taking into account the training and adaptation processes, for example, to a new software whose purpose will be to save time and cost, obviously more than will amortize and recover those hours invested in training.

Because any quick cost-benefit analysis indicates to us in any company, that the long-term benefits of training would far exceed the initial cost due to the start-up, adaptation of processes, suspension of some procedures until they are replaced, or even work simultaneously with two programs until the old one is stopped, as is often the case. Businesses are powered by highly trained and knowledgeable employees who have the power to achieve lasting success.

Which are the keys to continuous training and education?

1º) Capitalize on feedback and reduce errors

When you operate intensively in all workplaces on a daily basis, from factory to administration, it is normal for errors to occur. But it is useless if it is considered a failure and is not learned from it.

An ongoing training program helps employees hone their knowledge and skills and provides them with a clear picture of their strengths and weaknesses.

From an organizational perspective, it also minimizes pain points and saves the company time and money by avoiding the repetition of mistakes, mainly through the feedback process.

In this way it can be re-planned and adjusted based on what is known to be changed. An error is a signal, not an end in itself that ends in a negative cost. You have to capitalize on it, and training, together with training, teach how to take good advantage of the moments in which things have not gone as planned, among many other things that it teaches.

2nd) Improve job performance Anyone who receives training and is constantly monitored for progress is much more likely to feel valued. And this has as a counterpart a commitment of the employee with the management.

His feeling will be one of satisfaction in being able to tackle new challenges and he will be eager to learn more and advance in his career.

3rd) Continuous improvement in employee performance

The search for highly trained and motivated personnel necessarily requires people to be convinced that the company has a vision of the future in which its human resources come into play.

Recognition of people and motivation for improvement (constant support) channeled through a permanent training policy is the key to effective leadership.

It is the path to success because it enables employees to tackle new challenges with a team of highly trained people who can give the organization an advantage even over competitors with more resources and superior technology.

That of maximizing profits at any cost is not the way into current management: the benefit must be for both the organization and the employees. Those who do not understand this will surely not have operational training and education plans as part of their corporate culture.

Antonio Alonso, president of the AEEN (Spanish Business School Association) and general secretary of EUPHE (European Union of Private Higher Education)