It is common sense to train your employees when they first come on board, but for most companies, it stops there. This is unfortunate, because it can stunt the growth of a company, reducing productivity and profits. A custom fitted employee training programme can bridge the gap between skillsets of workers. Because you can easily update and tailor it to each person, everyone ends up on the same page, making cooperation and collaboration easier and more effective, too.
Some benefits of custom fitting your employee training programme include the following:
- Makes employee training flexible and changeable. A customised tech training program is simple to upgrade according to the ever-changing needs of your organisation
- Helps employees have a better learning experience. Trainees can make use of real-world situations, using your technology, which lets them put their new knowledge and skills into practice.
- Enables you to reinforce your brand identity. By adding your brand identity to your training programme, you can transition seamlessly from internal and external departments and materials to training materials, examples and case studies.
- Custom fitting is practical and cost-effective. Training in-house is less expensive, because it is more targeted. You can use what you already have onsite, as well as experienced staff to reinforce lessons. By creating your own training plan, you avoid licensing fees associated with ownership rights, too.
How to Get Started: Determining Training Needs
According to McKinsey.com, one advantage of customized training is that it raises employee awareness of their skill gaps, which reduces resistance to learning new skills. You can follow some simple steps to get started with your custom tech training programme. Start by determining the training needs of your company using these resources.
- Job Requirements: Start by creating a description for each role in your company. This will give you a base for training topics to cover.
- Company Objectives: Match your company goals to your training objectives. Start with new employee orientation, and then new technology training, and so on.
- Company Review: Identify safety needs or major missteps in your company over the past year. Look at any human resources complaints, employee records, harassment cases or other legal problems to address, too.
- Employee Surveys: Ask your workers to evaluate peers anonymously. Find out where the skills are lacking, and pinpoint areas to address in training.
- Skills Tests: Have employees take a specific skills test to determine any job skills gaps.
Create a Firm Foundation: Lists, Charts and Graphs
The next thing to do is to draw up a firm foundation for your training programme. You do this by setting detailed goals for each training need that you have uncovered in the previous section. Ask yourself specific questions based on your type of business and your employees. Do you want workers to be skilled in MS project training? Are some workers in need of the basic IT skills? Do you want everyone to know how to use Excel? Pinpoint what you want your training to achieve, but be realistic, too. Don’t set the bar so high, your workers will become discouraged. Here’s some great ways to lay your foundation:
- Make a list of all workers that would benefit by the training, as well as exactly what topics they need to learn.
- Break up the lists into basic, intermediate and advanced groups, to focus your training purposes.
- Prepare trainees before the training begins by sending them information, pre-tests and surveys asking them what they’d like covered in their training.
- Set up a master training schedule with specific dates for each session. Include make up dates. List all training topics you want to complete in the next six months to a year. Schedule lessons so that trainees have time to get extra help and to study before the next.
- Choose your training methods, depending on the topic. For example, if you want them to learn Excel, choose an online training program, or have an expert trainer come in once a week to conduct a lesson.
- List the materials, programs, equipment and methods trainees will use in the training programme
Add some flexibility to your programme to allow trainees to learn at the speed that’s best for them. Prepare for delays caused by technical and other problems, as well. According to an article on brain power at Trainingmag.com, Alice Kim, Ph.D., of The Rotman Research Institute said that studies prove shorter learning sessions over a longer period, such as six months or even a year, combined with real-time practice works best for retaining learned skills.
Although it may seem financially feasible to rush employees through your training programme, you’ll end up with better workers by slowing down the process. It takes time to learn and integrate new skills. Give your crew time to implement what they have learned. It will pay off bigtime for your business in the end.
Bruce Richards believes there is a training program that's perfect for every company out there. With a keen eye on the professional skills in the development world, he likes to write about what he discovers and learns by posting online. Look for his illuminating and interesting posts on a variety of top blogs and websites.
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