Training your staff makes dollars and cents*

Article image - Training your staff makes dollars and cents* Proud Global Training Institute graduates proudly display their new Honors.

It is often difficult for organisations to justify spending money on their own people’s qualifications and training.

Training often seems like a financial black hole. So much so, that in an economic downturn or a cost-cutting exercise, training budgets are the first to be sacrificed.

Interestingly enough by doing the mathematics on training costs, the return on investment (ROI) and the consequences of not training your staff, you would find sacrificing the training budget is probably one of the most counter-effective moves during an economic downturn.

Consider any given organisations expenses. Wages and staff expenses are in the vicinity of 30 – 45 percent of total expenditure.

So, naturally during an economic downturn or cost-cutting exercise the first action is to reduce the largest expenses. Unfortunately, human capital is seen as an expense and not an investment.

Let’s compare man vs machine. Machines are capable of outputting only one thing at a maximum output for which it is built. A human on the other hand, is capable of increased productivity and sustainability with very little extra financial input.

After all, how many machines do you know which can sustain increased productivity, with as little as a 6 percent to 11 percent once-off capital injection?

People also have the advantage of switching tasks while producing work at a sustained level.

Attracting the right people to the workforce is very difficult especially if the organisation is based outside a major city.

Regional organisations often train their current staff to step into new roles, while finding and training new lower level staff to be more productive.

Author Jim Collins along with some 20 researchers conducted a five year study of 1100 publicly listed companies.

The research examined what turns a good organisation into a great organisation. This culminated in his bestselling book Good to Great.

Good to Great found one of the seven key factors making an organisation Great is finding and keeping Great staff dubbing it ‘First Who, Then What’. The idea is to find the right people to come on your bus, then find the right seat for them on your bus. While helping the wrong people to disembark your bus and find one that suits them.

Jim goes on to say, ‘once you have the right people on the bus’ do not try to motivate them as they are intrinsically motivated. Instead, avoid De-motivating these people.

As you can imagine, such people want to contribute positively in a significant way to the organisation and don’t view their work as simply a means towards income.

One of the best ways to help these ‘right people’ to positively contribute, is by training them for more involvement and higher duties.

A full qualification recognising their skills is the ultimate recognition for a job well done. This recognised qualification can mean as much to your staff as a PhD can to others.

Assuming an organisation has the right people, the organisational benefits for training your current staff can include:
1. increased efficiencies and productivity

2. increased profitability or reducing expenses due to less mistakes

3. increased morale, less sick days and employee longevity

4. staff in new positions getting up to speed up to seven times faster through deeper organisation and understanding, and

5. reduced recruiting, hiring and training expenses.
In some instances, the training needs of staff can be as basic as on the job training, while sometimes an unaccredited course or two is very helpful.

In a number of instances, a fully recognised qualification, highly contextualised or relevant to the person’s workplace, working on current and required skills of the staff member would be the best option.

If the fully recognised qualification is the best choice, then choosing the best provider can be tough.

Things to consider include:

  • experience in working with councils
  • how applicable the training and assessments are to the staff members work and organisation
  • completion rates being better than the current industry average of 49 percent
  • flexibility for your staff’s study times, assessments and completion processes
  • the ability to get one on one trainer appointments for your staff
  • accessibility of getting help quickly, phone or emails
  • subsidies available and payment options
  • length of time being a training provider – in excess of 10 years is one good indicator
  • number of complaints against the training organisation, go online and search and
  • ASQA (the regulator) decisions – check by name, ensure you get this right, also go to the ASQA website.

Well thought-out training for your ‘right staff’ is a very high value, low cost budget item that most times provides an amazing ROI.
If done correctly and when appropriate, training your good people will create huge benefits for your organisation even in
lean times.

*Copy supplied by Global Training Institute