In times of economic uncertainty, one of the first actions which big businesses take is to make major cuts to their training budgets.
Those who make these decisions often do so because they are unaware of the value that training can bring to an organisation. Whilst there may be money to replace IT equipment and update software to enable them to capture and organise data more efficiently, refine management information reports etc, the training budget often disappears.
I have always believed that the greatest asset any organisation has is its staff. If employees feel confident in performing the roles expected of them, this enhances self esteem, which in turn raises morale. This can and often does lead to higher levels of productivity. Good, up to date, relevant training programmes will contribute to employees feeling valued. They will be able to see clearly that their employers recognise the roles they play in the development and sustainability of a successful business. If employees are happy in their roles staff retention rates are normally good. This avoids the need for unnecessary costly staff recruitment campaigns.
A happy, skilled workforce is paramount to protecting the profitability of a business. In addition to promoting higher levels of productivity, training helps to identify smarter ways of working, better and more effective communication, less absence at work through sickness, and greater efficiency all round.
Next time you are looking at making cuts to the training budget, think carefully about the implications of doing so. Can you really afford to do so?
By Joseph Barrell, Nwes Business Support Specialist