With the demands of keeping a workplace productive and profitable, many managers may overlook one simple perk that has been proven to boost employee retention. That perk is professional training.
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If you’re a manager interested in retaining good employees, it may be time to look at your training efforts. Studies indicate that professional training increases employee retention.
While keeping an eye on your bottom line you may be tempted to think that employee training is just too costly. But avoid this trap because the truth is that turnover can cost you much, much more.
Estimates vary widely by industry and position but replacing an employee can cost upwards of 25% of the departing employee’s salary and benefits.
If you have several positions that become vacant in a given year, your turnover expenditures can quickly run into the tens of thousands of dollars.
Clearly an investment in training is by far the better value.
Options ranging from most to least expensive:
Tuition reimbursement whether for a degree program or single classes is always popular but can be pricey. However, tuition can be deducted from the employer’s taxes as a business expense subject to IRS rules. Further, an employee working toward a degree has a built-in motivation to stay with the organization funding their studies.
Paying for licensing or certification is another option to consider. As is sending your employee to offsite seminars or technical training. You may even choose to bring training sessions in-house and offer them to a group of employees at once.
Some companies train employees through their professional or trade associations which sponsor regular conferences or trade shows. These events often offer a range of seminars or breakout sessions that enable attendees to select relevant and interesting topics.
Online training is another alternative that’s both cost-effective and schedule friendly
Finally, formal mentoring or job shadowing is a low-cost training method that can give your employees the opportunity to learn from the more seasoned staffers.
Whatever training options you choose be sure to communicate them in a clear and consistent fashion. Tuition reimbursement for example should be outlined as a benefit in your employee handbook and mentioned to any prospective job candidate
All training opportunities should be carried out fairly and without bias.
Outline eligibility, approval process, registration, and reimbursement procedures in writing and be sure to ask for formal employee feedback on training.
Employees should be able to tell you how any given class or session improved their performance and ability to help meet company goals.
Lastly remember that offering training demonstrates how much your employees matter to you and that they are a worthwhile investment. In fact, your employees are your most important asset and training them well should enhance their value, their loyalty and your company’s reputation in the market.