The workforce of today is deeply focused on the learning opportunities and skills they are set to gain at the workplace. Organizations of today use attractive learning tools and modules such as massive open online courses (MOOCs) and courses from recognized quarters as a draw for new recruits and as a way to retain valuable existing employees. Attracting and retaining employees has become a challenging task in a competitive environment. Training and assessment tools are employed consistently to identify high-performing employees. These top performers are then rewarded with access to superior training modules and their performance is suitably enhanced due to this investment in building their skills and personality.
Understanding the benefits of employee training
It’s no wonder that businesses that keep the workforce engaged with different types of training programs for employees enjoy greater trust. When an employee begins to perform better after a training and development course, he/she immediately tends to feel the thrill of improved productivity. In addition to spending constructive hours getting more work done, the employee also feels obligated to tell others how the employee training program has benefited their quality of work.
To outsiders who hear of a culture of learning, this is an incentive to join the organization. To the insiders, it is a confidence building exercise which also signifies that the organization cares for them. Employees who struggle to perform now see a beacon of hope that instead of being sidelined or eased out for poor performance, help is available. Better-than-average performers do even better as they learn more skills and prepare to take on more responsibility.
Employees want development and opportunity to upskill
A common observation among employee training programs is that often the training and development pattern follows a ‘funnel shape’. It’s high at the beginning of career post joining and tapers off as the employee gains seniority. A singular astonishing observation is that workers are ready to forego better pay in lieu of better growth opportunities. On the other hand, they are against joining a company that does not offer skills upgrades and employee training programs.
The Indian IT industry is one where training is a fixed feature. Yet, NASSCOM estimates that 40% of India’s existing four million IT workforce will have to revamp their skills. An IT professional’s career starts with training, and upskilling is needed from time to time. Employees are even rejected or downsized based on their ability to absorb new skills. Popular examples of how IT giants such as MindTree, Cognizant, Tech Mahindra have invested big in L&D show that they are taking advantage of modules and MOOCs supplied by up and coming training facilities like EdX, Coursera, and Udacity.
For simple reasons of enhanced job satisfaction, increased productivity and many other benefits of employee training, the importance of training and development in building a high performing workforce cannot be emphasized enough.
You might also be interested to read: Corporate Training Programs – Latest Trends in Learning Modes, Methods and Specialized Courses for Growth
Methods of learning
There are several kinds of training methods used by trainers in organizations. A training program is brought about by the confluence of top management, trainers, academicians, industry experts, and subject-matter experts. They determine the structure and methodology to be employed so that employees find training palatable and in sync with the challenges specific to their job roles. Some of the methods are the lecture method, case study method, conference, in-basket method, T-group training, role play exercises, induction training, cross-functional training, creativity training, diversity training, refresher training and safety training. Besides, there are various innovative and modern training techniques used by renowned Indian companies such as games, exercises, Gordon technique, lateral thinking, etc.
A few corporations have rolled our very interesting and valuable training programs that use a mix of various tools that help deliver. Cognizant for example, is an organization that does not focus on just the employee training but also the entire ecosystem to ensure robust workforce development. They have designed an extensive reskilling plan which was based on annual operating business plans. Another bigwig is Paypal India which is well-known for its people-friendly practices. Technical training provided at Paypal is enviable, and rivalled only by their e-learning practices. Their feedback loops are rich and individual-oriented. Learning practices are highly customized. Facilitation and hands-on learning are encouraged. Apollo Munich, on the other hand, is known for managing and training its sizable workforce. They believe in empowering their diverse staff through classroom training, mock-up role-playing sessions, and the attraction of certification courses. Vodafone is another company that trains employees based on the roles they are set to fulfil. They concentrate on functional areas and impart the strength of concept and mental agility through their leadership academies. The truly admirable feature of Vodafone is that it varies its training practices based on the region it is located in and the role it grooms the individual for.
A host of other examples of excellent employee training programs are seen among respectable players such as Accenture, IBM, and MindTree. They take advantage of role-playing scenarios (and role reversal to develop empathy skills), shadowing, outward bound training, and strategic planning games to convey nuggets of learning with maximum retentive value.
Having a great training program, though very crucial, will not deliver all the desired results if not supported by an LMS. An employee training program charted with the help of an LMS save costs and resources, particularly time. They ensure rote administrative work surrounding training, scheduling and testing are cut out and efficiency in execution is improved. Such a training and development process offers rewards to the learners and the entity that stands to gain from their work. A farsighted organization would put these functions of learning into place and reap sustained rewards.
Kelsy Ketchum, 6 key features your employee training program needs – and how LMS can help, HR Morning, February 18, 2019
Priyanka Sangani, Here’s how Indian IT firms are overhauling employee training process, The Economic Times, Nov 09, 2018
ET Bureau, The winning streak, The Economic Times, Jul 02, 2018
Dr. Harsh Dwevidi and Ona Ladiwal, Training Practices in Indian Organizations: An Overview, HRM Overview, Vol. XI, No. 7, 2011
Phani Madhav, Here’s How Your LMS Can Facilitate Collaborative Learning, CommLab India, November 21 2017