1. Set a Process
Before beginning any training process, consider how it will incorporate into your long-term business model. If you’re setting up a course for new employees, decide from the start how early in a new employee’s time with your company you want the training to take place. Come up with a curriculum you can refine over time and make the document available to all employees. If you decide to make training and development an ongoing part of an employee’s job description, make sure you incorporate that into employee evaluations as well.
2. Assess Training Needs
Many businesses fail in their training efforts because they send employees to training they don’t need. By assessing your training needs, you can tell you exactly what your workers need and what they don’t.
Some businesses even benefit from assessing each employee’s knowledge and experience level before scheduling training. From this information, choose courses that add to what each person already knows. This ensures employees get the most out of the time invested.
3. Customize Training
Businesses waste time when they attempt a one-size-fits-all approach to training. They hear of a great new course on customer service, for instance, and require all employees to take it, regardless of their roles in the company.
Businesses can improve this process by first determining which courses, if any, can apply to every employee and which courses only apply to a small subset of employees. Either supervisors or HR representatives should track employee training to make sure workers aren’t being sent to courses they’ve already attended.
4. Choose Easy-to-Learn Technology
When systems are easy to learn, training time can be cut down significantly. Businesses also have a greater chance that even the most technologically challenged employees will be able to master their systems.
As you search for new software, ask for demonstrations, and determine whether using the technology can be learned in just one brief training session or if you need several sessions over the course of a few weeks. For example, a solution like QuickBooks Point of Sale powered by Revel Systems has an intuitive interface that employees can learn with minimal training and tech savvy, while proprietary software or programs with complex UIs may require a significant time commitment to learn.
5. Avoid Negative Training
Sending a poor-performing employee to training as punishment is a waste of everyone’s time. The employee will feel resentful and not learn from the course. Even worse, morale will drop. Businesses should also avoid sending an entire workforce to training to address a issue involving only one or two problem employees.
6. Consider Online Coursework
Instead of bringing in trainers or sending employees to an authorized training facility, consider an online training program that offers a wide variety of classes. You won’t find specialized coursework on these sites, but you will find training in common areas such as Microsoft Office, leadership, customer service and sales, as well as standard business liability issues like sexual harassment, Title VI and regulatory compliance.
By signing up for a monthly subscription to a service like Lynda.com or EdX, employers can offer employees the option to take classes as they need them.
Employee training may be time consuming, but it can also help build morale and increase productivity. When employers take the right approach to determine needs and line up courses to match those needs, they are more likely to get results.
Looking for more tips on bringing on new workers? See our article on five ways to save money when looking for new employees.