7 Ways to Improve Employee Training and Development Programs
Employee training and development programs are the strongest pillars that lay the foundation of high performance, optimum results, and company success. This is the reason why millions of organizations around the globe spend billions of dollars on training and development programs for their employees. However, even with billions of dollars spent each year, improving these programs is one of the biggest concerns for HR executives.
In this article, we will discuss seven effective ways to improve employee training and development programs.
7 Ways to Improve Employee Training and Development Programs
1. Blended Learning
Employees are busier than ever before. Therefore, taking time out for training sessions becomes difficult. Fortunately, with digital learning tools such as Learning Management System (LMS), employees can study at their own pace. Moreover, with the user-friendly interface of LMS, there will be less frustration and more convenience. Employees can even learn and consume information on the go with a mobile-friendly Learning Management System.
While eLearning is a great option for employees to study-at-your-own-pace, it is not meant to replace other modes of learning. Traditional in-person training sessions are better suited for certain skills. For instance, operating hardware equipment that requires physical actions or sales techniques that depend on personal interaction is better taught in person.
Therefore, it is imperative to offer blended learning programs for employees to improve the effectiveness of training and development programs.
2. Design Learning Paths
Creating a training and development program is not about putting a bunch of different courses together. Instead, it is a journey focused on improving the knowledge base of your employee to make them better at their respective jobs. Therefore, it is imperative to design a well-structured training and development program that provide employees with different learning paths based on their future goals and existing skill set.
Start designing the training programs with positions you want to train your employees for and then combine various courses that allow employees to learn further for higher roles. Taking employee feedback can also help your organization to improve the learning paths of employees at a different level.
That said, do not force all employees to take the entire training and development program from start to end. If some employees already have the necessary skills, they should be allowed to skip ahead to the next advanced course.
3. Use Knowledge Base Software
One of the most efficient ways to improve your organizational employee training and development program is through the use of a knowledge base software.
The knowledge base software acts as a self-serve, online library that captures, organizes, and shares the company's knowledge on one centralized platform. When employees can access relevant information such as business processes, best practices, employee insights, customer interactions, and internal news - it speeds up their learning process and allows them to make informed decisions.
Moreover, companies can use knowledge base software for onboarding their new employees as well. If all the documentation about the company's procedures and policies is stored within the centralized knowledge base software, the onboarding process becomes much more straightforward. Using an effective AI-powered knowledge base software such as AllAnswered makes training programs more effective while increasing the productivity of employees.
4. Have a Mission Statement
For improving the training and development program, it is imperative to understand the reason behind having a training program. Whether it is about improving employee retention, increasing sales numbers, or decreasing human resource complaints, it is crucial to understand the purpose.
Besides, there could be several purposes that you are trying to achieve through the training and development programs. And there is no harm in it. You can achieve more than one thing through a single training and development program. However, what is essential is to have a clear understanding of your mission statement and then design the program accordingly for increased effectiveness.
5. Ask Employees What They Want
No one will have a better understanding of their skill deficit other than the employee itself. Therefore, to improve your training and development programs, including the employees in the process. Ask them specific skills that they would like to learn for progressing in their respective careers.
Of course, you will not be able to address the needs of all employees through a single program. Still, it will certainly increase the effectiveness of your training program when the majority of the employees are looking to learn particular skills concerning their future goals. That said, you can also consult with the support desk to determine which tickets are more frequently opened by employees to reveal the skill gap in your organization.
6. Include Soft Skills
The majority of the companies focuses largely on hard skills in their training and development programs. However, soft skills are as important as hard skills for the growth and success of your business and employees, both.
Moreover, soft skills become all the more important for specific roles that involve frequent customer interactions and other management positions. Therefore, design a training program that strikes a balance between hard skills and soft skills. It is only through effective soft skills development programs that employees will become better at conflict resolution, time management, decision making, and leadership.
7. Involve Managers
Managers know the specific skills that their teams possess and the skills they lack. Therefore, involve managers in the process of improving the employee training and development program within your organization.
Besides that, managers are always in touch with the employees. As a result, they can easily monitor their progress before and after the training program. This will allow your organization to determine the training and development program that is really working to improve the skillset of employees.
Training and development programs are the only way to boost the efficiency of your workforce. Therefore, investing the time, effort, and money into the programs today can pay a large sum of dividends later on.