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The importance of investing in employee development

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Kerrie-Anne Chinn, Content & Editorial Manager
2016-09-29

Believe it or not, more money isn’t always at the top of the list of what staff want. In today’s workplaces, it seems many people are also motivated by the non-financial factors that a company can provide them with, such as opportunities for career growth and employee development.

Organizations need to be aware that employees place high value on the amount that a company invests in their development. Staff are actively looking for learning and development opportunities to help them on their career path and need to feel that their employer is invested in their professional development.

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With 76% of employees reportedly wanting opportunities for career growth, there is clear drive for employers to start investing more resources into their employee training and development.

The Benefits of Investing in Employee Development

While learning and development bring clear advantages to an individual, in terms of career progression, confidence and improved skill sets, there are also numerous benefits for organizations.

By putting energy and attention into employee development, your company can expect to see the benefits of:

  • Increased employee performance
  • Higher levels of job satisfaction, staff engagement and team morale
  • Better workplace culture
  • Higher levels of knowledge retention and transfer
  • Attracting and retaining good employees

Reduce Your Rate of Staff Turnover 

That last one is very important for companies. When 40% of employees who receive poor job training leave their positions within the first year, it’s vital that organizations recognise the importance of investing in staff development.

By working to improve employee development, an organization can reduce their staff turnover rate, saving considerable amounts of time and money.

There are significant costs for companies associated with high staff turnover rates. The effects of just one staff member leaving can result in lower productivity for their team, with less sales or company profits. Organizations will also be impacted by the huge costs of interviewing and training replacements and may even experience negative effects on team morale and work culture. 

As Sylvie Woolf, Director of Client Services says, if you’re looking to “give employees a reason to stay – employee development is it.” 

Give Your Employees the Tools They Need

Ongoing training and learning play a large role in an employee’s professional development.

While over 70% of learning on the job occurs informally, it’s important to use informal learning in conjunction with more formal modes of training, to make sure staff are receiving information and skills that are aligned with the values and direction of the organization.

Mentoring, training and e-learning are all great practices to help employees reach their full potential, ensuring they’re ready to take on opportunities for higher duties or pursue a new career path.

By doing this, organizations are significantly more likely to end up with knowledgeable, capable employees who are more invested in a company that invests in them.

How Managers Can Support Employee Development

If you’re a manager or team leader, you need to be aware of the importance of these activities for staff, as well as how to support them in their development. This short online course, Support Employee Development, can help you identify what you need to do to support each of your team members' development efforts.

You’ll have greater understanding of the role of managers in helping guide development actions, setting development expectations, and holding individuals accountable to implement their development actions.

You might also want to take a look at our previous articles about employee development on the Go1 blog.

Go1 helps millions of people in thousands of organizations engage in learning that is relevant, effective and inspiring.
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