Investing in up-skilling can save your company some serious cash, so long as you have the mindset to spot the long-term benefits. Trouble is, in the short term, too many business owners see training as an inconvenience: time-consuming and costly.
The trick is seeing through the short-term pain to the long-term gain. Yes, team members may have to take time off work to study. Yes, you may find that leaves the business short staffed and unproductive. But this is temporary and the long-term benefits are many.
Increase your productivity
Training results in a focus on new ways of doing things. Innovative ideas and solutions emerge. Trained team waste less resources, money and time and produce higher quality work.
Free up your time, thanks to empowerment
How many times have you complained, ‘Why do I need to guide my team all the time?’ Firstly, as a leader in your business, you can’t ever get away from leading your team. However, by training your team, you deliver empowerment. Training frees teams to be more autonomous, to have the confidence to go and find the answer themselves. A well-trained team knows how to perform tasks effectively and efficiently without you or a manager needing to guide them.
Happy people = happy profits
It’s satisfying and morale boosting to know your employer will invest time and money in training. It shows that the business values its people’s contributions and how they have a personal vision for their involvement in the business. Plus, there’s a sense of achievement when they achieve the qualification. An empowered, engaged team contributes to the business bottom line. Happy people equals happy profits.
Happy people = happy customers
While a more obvious benefit of a better-trained team is the extra knowledge they have to cope with customers’ needs and complaints, there’s a greater knock-on effect. Empowered, happy people interacting with your customers means customers are more likely to be happy as a result! It breeds satisfaction and loyalty, offering a future source of revenue through repeat business and word of mouth.
Nimble thinkers who embrace change
Technology brings change and is speedily increasing. Who would have thought 15 years ago we would be cloud collaborating for a range of business functions: accounting, documents, databases, and so on? Or that we could do all of this from our phones? Technology can be costly to adapt, but it provides businesses with the opportunity to improve their innovation and productivity. Investing in team members who are not only trained in the latest technology but also have a mindset that embraces training – and therefore self-growth – means they will welcome the benefits of change more readily.
Too costly? Think again and seek help
Hopefully you now recognise that the benefits of committing to up-skilling your team outweigh the costs. Also, remember the financial burden of experiencing a high turnover of staff leave to find growth and training opportunities with other companies. An up-skilling program is also attractive to future employees – if your company is renowned for recurring training, you will attract a higher calibre of applicants.
There are also a number of government-led initiatives to offset training expenditures. The Department of Education and Training’s MySkills website has details on technology-related courses available across Australia. There’s a great summary article here on which grants you could qualify for – be sure to check this out.
In NSW, the Upskilled program partners with the Microsoft Academy to provide courses across networking, IT support, systems administration and website development. Meanwhile, the Advance Queensland Knowledge Transfers Partnerships program provides up to $50,000 for businesses to hire a graduate to work on an innovative project. There are also government grants and assistance that can help subsidise costs.