Employee driven improvement & innovation: creating opportunities for reflection and improvement
Promoting your employees’ professional training: planning and organization of professional training sessions & seminars
Estimated budget: 100-500
There’s nothing worse than working somewhere that expects you to do something but won’t enable you to do it. Training is the link between the company and the workforce, as it represents a tool aimed at personal and professional growth of the employees and, at the same time, the company thanks to its employees, can develop and achieve the skills needed to manage change and adapt to an increasingly competitive environment.
The importance to promote professional training for employees
The term professional training may be used in reference to a wide variety of specialized training, formal education, or advanced professional learning and aims to help employees to improve their professional knowledge, competence, skill, and effectiveness.
Training must be structured on the basis of the qualifications and classification of the worker in order to improve his/her knowledge, adapting it to the ever new demands of production and to the challenges of the market. In a context that is constantly changing, with the arrival of new technologies and the updating of existing ones, together with the evolution of commercial relations, the preparation of workers is crucial. Receiving continuous education means they are always on the cutting edge of industry developments. Training on its behalf tries to overcome the gaps between employees and major contents of their working environment.
There are different types of employee trainings:
Orientation training is the most common type of employee training. It’s a formally welcoming and introducing new hires to your company within their first week on the job. This training tends to be relevant to all company and departments.
Orientation trainings are usually prepared by HR on some main topics such as:
- Company mission, vision, and values
- Corporate culture
- Organizational structure and leadership team intro
- Mandatory new-hire paperwork
- Overview of benefit plans
- Administrative procedures (computer logins, extension, email setups, etc.)
- Key corporate policies
Onboarding Training. Contrary to a common misconception, orientation and onboarding are different types of employee trainings.
While orientation training lasts less than a working day addressed to everyone in the company, onboarding training is a series of department-specific sessions that take place over a longer period of time. It is strategically created with the goal of enabling new employees to be as successful as they can be in their new roles in the shortest period of time.
Onboarding trainings ideally start on the first day of employment and may carry on throughout the first year as needed. It is prepared by department leaders with the focus of reaching departmental goals and connecting them with overall company objectives. Topics should, therefore, address employee needs and provide them with easy access to information and skills that they need to do their jobs efficiently and maximize employee engagement.
Technical Skills Development Training includes the know-how of doing things like data analysis, content writing, social media management, coding, programming, etc.
Technical skills training is a fundamental employee education component because it’s the main way your employees will know how to technically do their jobs right. Employees need to engage in ongoing learning on a regular basis to stay up-to-date with the latest developments.
Soft skills development training. How your employees act is just as important and what they know, soft skills are essential for growth both of the company and employee. Soft skills are personal attributes that enable employees to interact effectively and harmoniously with other people in the workplace, including co-workers, management, and customers.
Studied have actually shown that a gap in basic soft skills among company employees affects company success and increases turnover rates.
Soft skills trainings are useful for new and existing employees of all levels and are an extremely effective way to build an efficient, respectful and collaborative culture.
Some topics to consider covering in your soft skills training include: Communication skills, presentation skills, problem-solving, conflict resolution, leadership, emotional Intelligence, time management, ethics, teamwork, adaptability
The main objectives of professional trainings:
- improve communication and dialogue within the company;
- develop employees’ skills, competences and support them to expand their knowledge for the company;
- bring to light the goals shared among workers and push them to achieve them;
- encourage the vision of the company as a place to grow both on a personal and career level;
- motivating the daily performance and adherence to corporate values;
- stimulates the sense of belonging among the members of the company, making relationships more enjoyable and thus stimulating productivity.
How to implement an effective professional training program?
- Analyse the company’s needs
Analyse the strengths and weaknesses of your company. Try to understand which area of competences employees lack. It can be useful to open a dialogue with them, to understand what is lacking in their training to become more efficient in their work. Collecting a clear, honest set of needs helps to establish a successful employee training initiatives.
- Establish the training program goals
Before starting the professional training program, it is important to mark the goals, needs and target audiences of the program. It enables to prioritize which training objectives need tackling first, which ones will be most appreciated by employees and which ones will have the biggest impact on business.
- Assess employee training programs
No training program is complete until you measure its results. Review and redesign your educational programs if they don’t meet your intended objectives. Use employee feedback to inform the process. Ask employees:
- What new (e.g. task, tool, skill) did you learn from the program?
- How will (or did) you apply this newly-acquired knowledge on the job?
- What did you like about the program and what should we improve (e.g. topic, methodology, instructor, material)?
- Track and improve
Professional training programs are not static. It is important to continually evolve and improve them. Watching how employees access and interact with the training, as well as evaluating its effectiveness, it is useful to decide how to improve the professional training program.
Necessary human resources
- Well-prepared trainer who organises and provides the professional training.
- Employees, and sometimes also managers, who participate in it.
Skills that managers & employees need to develop in order to implement the practice
- Communication skills
- Active listening skills
If you want to develop these skills among your managers and employees, you can have a look at INNovaSouth’s innovative online training course, available here.
Necessary material resources
For training courses, a large room is required, possibly with good acoustics.
Chairs and tables for all participants are necessary, as well as pens, block notes, flip charts, marketers, so that employees can attend the course comfortably and have available all the necessary materials.
Moreover, a blackboard and a screen with the projector can help to make the professional training courses more interesting and easier to attend.
Benefits both your company and your employees will realise include:
Increases competitiveness. The training courses allow employees, and therefore also the company, to keep up with technological advances and market changes. This is fundamental for being competitive and creating innovation.
Increase productivity. When skills and knowledges of employees increase, their performance is usually improved. In fact, they acquire more confidence with technical procedures and tools, which should allow them to carry out their tasks more efficiently.
Improve business understanding. Providing a cross-training between the different departments helps to provide employees with a broader picture of the business of the company and the mechanisms that can bring it to success.
The engagement increases. When an organization invests in the training of its employees, it proves to consider them as valuable resources. And when workers feel valued, they tend to appreciate the company more and feel more involved in the development of its business.
The turnover decreases. Usually investing in training makes employees feel more satisfied. In fact, they will tend not to feel “immobile” and destined to always perform the same tasks in a static work environment, but will perceive to work in a more dynamic and stimulating environment. This will help keep them in the company longer.
It can also lead to reductions in inefficient use of time and materials, workplace accidents, maintenance costs of equipment, recruitment expenses.
Example(s) of prior application
Company name: Ctb Air Tecnology
Number of employees: 6-9
How the WPI was implemented?
Ctb Air Technology deals with the production of plants in acid-proof material, such as aspiration and treatment air. All employees are involved in professional training: there are no specific people who must take a training course, but all collaborators can attend them, thus they can enrich their resume. The goal is working in harmony and providing to every employee additional skills, which go even beyond those necessary for the specific work of each one.
The large turnout has led to an increase in the number of courses provided, and they now embrace more training needs. Furthermore, every trimester, an external manager holds courses on safety. Employees, thanks to these courses, are more prepared and feel involved in the company.