Investing in employee training and development is one of the best actions any organization can take towards having a skilled and productive workforce. Effective training boosts your employees’ morale and gives them a sense of belonging and job satisfaction.
While most managers and HR experts have realized the importance of implementing learning and development programs in their firms, most are still struggling with boosting employee training results and effectiveness.
In this post, we will discuss more about employee training and development and executives can boost their training results and effectiveness.
What is employee training and development?
Employee training and development is a formal process where talent development experts help the individual employee improve their performance and productivity at work. It includes all the activities that allow staff members to get new or improve the existing skills or knowledge.
Development is the process of acquiring knowledge, attitude, or skills that makes you ready for new responsibilities and directions. On the other hand, training is one of the specific and common types of employee development. Other types of development will be discussed later in the post.
So, what are the benefits of employee training and development? Read through the following section.
Benefits of employee training and development to an organization.
Implementing effective training and development in an organization comes with a lot of benefits both to the employee on a personal level and the organization. Here are some of the common ones.
1. It develops employee.
Usually, the skills sets acquired from educational bodies are different from those that are needed to succeed at work. Also, employee capabilities may differ based on the academic background and experiences in a given position.
Having job training and development programs allow organizations to equip their employees with skills required for relevant tasks. Furthermore, training programs help minimize the knowledge gap between a new recruit and an employee who has worked for the organization for long.
2. Fosters creativity.
Training programs equip workers with advanced capabilities and skillsets to do their work effectively. Most of the time, this encourages creativity at work by enabling them to apply these new skills in a novel manner to tackle new challenges at work.
At some time, organizations provide specialized incubation and training programs aimed at fostering innovation and creativity in a given field.
3. Boosts employees’ morale.
Mostly, the lack of guidance and support can affect staff motivation and belief in themselves. On the contrary, constant update of employee skills through training gives them the confidence to handle core tasks.
Improved employee morale translates to high performance and improved productivity, which is a significant ingredient of success in the company. For example, a company writer can produce quality copies through effective and constant learning.
4. It increases productivity.
Creating an effective training and development program has the general effect of increasing workplace performance and productivity.
A lot of sectors are progressively evolving with the increase in digital penetration. With constant training, employees become familiar with these new applications brought by technology.
When your staff becomes more familiar with the technological applications, it means that they can finish more tasks in the shortest time possible. Additionally, with improved morale, and the ability to innovate, the team members can find novel ways of accomplishing their goals and objectives.
5. Improves company reputation and profile.
Employees across the world look for a workplace environment that encourages them to grow and develop professionally. As the HR manager in an organization, providing comprehensive training means enhanced staff retention and the ability to attract the best talents.
A comprehensive employee development program makes your staff feel honoured in their respective positions and becomes great company ambassadors, hence improving reputation.
Types of employee job trainings.
Having understood the benefits of employee job training and development, it is imperative that we look at the different types of job training you can implement in your organization before we discuss ways of boosting employee training results.
There are different employee training methods that you can implement. They can be either auditory, visual, or kinaesthetic.
a. Technology-based learning.
This type of learning involves using technological methods to design computerized learning. Computer-based learning or e-learning is a type of training that is done on an online platform and done through a computer.
A notable advantage of technology-based training is that it allows your staff to complete learning without the need for physical presence or face-to-face instruction. Online learning imitates traditional learning methods by leveraging voiceovers and visuals to drive the point home effectively.
What’s more, this type of employee training is scalable since it can offer training to several people simultaneously. For example, an organization with 50 employees can get all of them to access training materials virtually from wherever they are simultaneously.
Also called hands-on learning, this employee training model involves acquiring the necessary skills and knowledge to improve by completing the duties related to the task. On-the-job training allows managers to maximize on time since the new recruits start working immediately while also learning at the same time.
In this type of development arrangement, there is always an element of job shadowing, where a more competent and skilled staff works closely with the new one to oversee and mentor them accordingly.
This also enables the new staff to acquire insights required for the role in a unique and specific context.
This form of training is relevant for industries that need their employees to gain specific skill sets that can be applied to handle and operate different pieces of machinery, such as those used in the medical or aviation sectors.
Simulation involves creating conditions that look the same as real-life situations and letting employees experience them and react accordingly. For instance, you can have a trainee pilot fly an airplane simulator under different weather conditions in the aviation sector.
Such simulations replicate real-life situations and allow trainees to handle any challenges that might arise in the future work life with less struggle.
d. Mentorship and Coaching.
Coaching and mentoring is a semi-structured or unstructured training approach allowing the trainee to learn from the senior or better-skilled personnel. You can choose mentorship and coaching to support other training methods for the effective development of employees.
Mentorships and coaching are beneficial since they provide members with development opportunities and foster positive and long-term teamwork among employees. This can further enable them to settle and feel satisfied in their respective workstations.
Although mentorship and coaching have a lot of benefits, it needs senior staff members to dedicate their time to mentoring other employees. And this can only work out well when there is an element of tokens or incentives to the seniors.
Regardless, looking at the benefits in the long term, we can confidently advise that it is worth the time and all other requirements.
Roleplaying is ideal in sectors that need frequent customer interactions and engagements. It involves both the trainer and trainee handling specific tasks relating to the potential job scenario.
Usually, these scenarios include crises or conflicts to allow trainees to practise handling difficult work situations in real life.
For example, a trainee in a customer care department will play the attendant's role while the trainer acts as the customer waiting to be served. The trainer might play the role of an angry client and observe how the employee responds to it. This way, the trainer instills the required skills of handling frustrated clients in real life.
f. Instructor-led training.
Also called classroom-style learning, this form of training involves the presence of an instructor directing trainees on different things to do. It is a traditional learning method involving the instructor to prepare and lead trainees by applying visual components.
Instructor-led training mimics the conventional classroom setup and boasts many benefits, such as positive bonding between the trainer and trainee. For instance, the employee can ask questions and clarifications to better their understanding in a given field.
However, adopting this type of training can be challenging, especially if you are dealing with a large number of trainees, as a lot of learners can interfere with interactions. Therefore, physical monitoring should be given topmost priority throughout the training session.
For the success of this training method, you must keep high energy levels and take frequent breaks to keep the session more engaging for employees.
Typically, this type of training is relevant and usually the best learning method for developing analytical and problem-solving skills. It involves creating a scenario that looks like a typical real-life problem for the employee to analyze and devise an appropriate solution to it.
Case studies allow employees to identify common issues at the workplace and how to come up with the right solution to such problems. So, if these challenges occur, workers are better placed to face them confidently without straining too much since they will apply the skills learned in the same case study.
Strategies for boosting employee training results.
Employing the best talents in an organization is only the tip of the iceberg; keeping them at their best levels has a crucial role in ensuring consistent productivity.
In the following section, we'll outline various strategies for boosting employee training results for maximum performance. Let's dive in.
1. Encourage interactive training.
When you need to improve or develop employees' potential, implementing a training program is always the first thing you will do. However, it's never enough to take them to a training session and leave them there or provide a huge pile of lessons to read.
To get the best out of your training programs, you may want to consider an alternative approach to make it more engaging, creative and above all, interactive.
Several software and platforms can help you create an interactive learning model for your employees. With a sound learning management system, the training resources can be made available over the internet and delivered through smartphones or computers.
Interactive learning is also a great way to change the monotonous and dull learning sessions into a more engaging and fun experience. For instance, you can make the training resources more appealing visually
2. Produce constant training content.
Training is an ongoing process; however, you don't need to arrange for weekly learning towards boosting employee training results. Enable a consistent learning experience in your team for constant employee development by offering new content regularly.
Avoid torturing trainees with boring and unattractive modules and PowerPoint presentations slides. Implement new and effective methods, such as micro learning-a training model where information is delivered in small chunks and bite-sized content.
Microlearning takes less time to complete and is ideal for a busy working environment. It does not clog employees' heads with a lot of information in one training session but allows you to produce small chunks of information consistently in a manner that employees resonate with.
3.Identify and solve the causes of poor performance.
One of the steps towards boosting employee training results and performance issues is to identify the cause of the problem and address it effectively. This can be ideal if you have workers who are not performing as expected.
Assessing why there is poor performance even after training helps you identify the root cause of the problem. Perhaps the employee is the wrong person for the job, they are demotivated, or they need specialized and more focused training.
After identifying the root cause of the issue, ensure you offer the necessary support and solution they need. You can consider adding more resources that can help them perform better and become more productive.
Also, you can change your employee training strategy or guide them into setting achievable performance goals. Ensure you regularly follow their progress by carrying out employee performance reviews and surveys.
4. Encourage collaborative learning and development programs.
Another sure way of boosting employee training results and performance is by adopting a collaborative learning system. Getting staff to work together on a project or specific conflict can help enhance their thinking levels and lead to higher work success.
Sharing information and insights among employees also helps improve their knowledge capacity and expand their minds to various perspectives. This allows them to think and perform outside the box.
A strong learning management system has assignments and discussion features that make collaborative learning feasible by allowing trainee employees to interact and discuss topics with one another in real-time.
Furthermore, these platforms support group video conferencing via a virtual classroom, allowing every team member to keep in touch regardless of their locations.
5. Integrate technology into your program.
Adopting the right technology in your training programs can dramatically improve your employee training and performance results. Right technologies can help speed processes and simplify tasks without affecting the quality of their work.
For example, instead of going through the struggles of printing all your documents, you can resort to exploring the best cloud-based storage technologies such as Google Docs or Dropbox.
If your employees work remotely, you can as well explore project management software like Asana, Trello, or even Jira, which are designed to allow team leaders to efficiently plan and delegate tasks.
6. Recognize and reward employee.
Always be on the forefront to recognize and reward your workers for the job well done if you want to improve their performance and training results.
According to research posted in the Journal of personality and social psychology, consistently rewarding your employees boosts their interests and engagement at work, which translates to a high level of performance and productivity.
There are several ways you can reward your employees: you can give them a pay rise or bonuses, paid time off, or promotion to high levels.
If you are using application-based systems, you can leverage the gamification reward methods where you can allow top performers to get points after undergoing gamified training.
Small rewards such as coupons and discounts can also go a long way, but if you have enough budget, you can give big prizes like international trips or gadgets.
7. Aim higher but set achievable goals.
While it is common for businesses to have a fear of failure, it is also important to aim high for better results than settling for less. As put by the renowned director James Cameron "if you set a ridiculously high goal and it fails, you'll probably fail on top of everybody's success."
Although it can be suitable to aim higher, one thing to keep in mind is to ensure that these objectives are outlined clearly to your employees. Once they know what needs to be achieved for a given period, they’ll be motivated to perform at their highest levels.
8. Encourage a positive training and workspace.
Promoting a positive training and work environment can help with improving employee performance and training results. First, inspire your team members to observe a good work-life balance and ensure you embrace flexible remote working, especially during the post-pandemic era.
Encourage your team to take regular breaks to prevent burning out. If you realize they are distant and stressed, it might be significant to reach out, join them for a nature walk, or invite them over for a coffee outside the work environment. After all, healthy work relations are a recipe for a positive workplace environment.
Also, apart from these internal reasons, it is advisable that you check their physical work environment too. Do they have relevant resources to accomplish their tasks? Have you thought of creating a social place where they can go and destress, collaborate and catch up with mates?
Remember that if your employees are satisfied with their work environment, you can have them in your organization for as long as you desire.
9.Create a culture of healthy feedbacks.
Although it can be intimidating for most companies to give and get feedback, the results can be amazing.
Allowing workers to engage and share their views about your organization and leadership offers them a sense of belonging, compelling them to work at their best capacity. On the other hand, sending them consistent work also fuels their growth and an opportunity to handle poor performances.
If your organization is just starting to create a healthy feedback culture, it may be wise to start with caution. For instance, you can allow team members to send feedback anonymously by sending survey emails.
And in situations of poor performance, learn to give employees constructive feedback. Instead of focusing on the problem, show them the impacts of their action, and provide them with a professional solution to improve moving forward.
Lastly, celebrate every achievement. Remember, there is always a team behind every success and milestone, so it is important that you hold a celebration. Show appreciation and gratitude by organizing a small party, taking them out for lunch, or arranging an out-of-town road trip.
Showing your staff how important they are to the organization will make them feel valued and inspire them to increase their output, do more to surpass their previous milestones, and even hit more in the future.
Boosting employee training results and their performance at work has always been a key pillar in the success of businesses in the corporate sphere, though most organizations often tend to overlook its benefits.
And though it might seem hard to execute a strong training strategy, there are several training methods you can explore including, tutor-led, coaching and mentoring, roleplaying, simulators, on-the-job, case studies, among others.