Barack Obama once said in a speech, “a budget is more than just a series of numbers on a page; it is an embodiment of our values.” While creating a budget for a company’s training program may seem like a smaller task than building a budget for an entire country, the bottom line remains the same. How a business or department allocates and spends its resources reflects its values.
In many cases, departments such as sales and marketing may receive more attention and funding than training and development programs. However, investing in employee training budgets can bring unexpected benefits to your company. In this article, we will discuss the advantages of having a training budget, as well as some practical considerations when setting one up.
Benefits of a Training Budget: Employee Engagement, Retention, and Productivity
Investing in employee training and development can lead to numerous benefits for your company. One of the most important benefits is increased employee engagement. This is especially true for younger employees who place a high value on learning and growth opportunities. Engaged employees are more productive and committed to their work, leading to better results for your company.
Moreover, providing learning opportunities for your employees can increase their loyalty to the company. This is especially important when working with millennials, who are generally less loyal to employers than previous generations of employees. Investing in employee training and development can improve employee retention and reduce turnover, which is costly for businesses.
Training Options to Consider :
There are various ways to incentivize and encourage employees to participate in professional development. Here are some options to consider:
- MOOC (Massive Open Online Courses) – These courses are simple, affordable, and diverse. They cover a range of disciplines and can be used as prerequisites for graduate certificates and master’s degrees that can be pursued later on.
- Internal Professional Development Opportunities – These opportunities are most effective when a group of employees needs upskilling or professional development around the same topics. This often happens with a change in legislation requiring new procedures or upgrades to technological systems requiring new hands-on training. Introducing a new theoretical approach to senior employees can also be effective.
- Conferences and Community Professional Development Opportunities – This is where training budgets and allocations are most important. Employees should have a certain amount of money allocated to them that allows them to find opportunities that align with their personal growth and advancement. While most employees have to request these types of funds, knowing that they are available will encourage them to proactively seek out growth opportunities that will benefit your business.
- Leadership Development and Coaching – For more senior staff members learning to build niche skills and develop their careers, it could be worth investing in a leadership coach for personalized growth and guidance.
Using the 70:20:10 Framework for Employee Learning and Development
When considering employee training and development, it is essential to use the 70:20:10 framework as a reference. This theory proposes that employees gain 70% of their learning through experience, 20% through relationships with other people, and 10% through structured courses and programs. Ensuring that your company has a training budget and robust learning, mentorship, and leadership opportunities can allow employees to learn from various sources to maximize their potential and productivity for your business.
In conclusion, having a training budget for your company can bring numerous benefits, including increased employee engagement, retention, and productivity. There are various options to consider when creating a training program, such as MOOCs, internal professional development opportunities, conferences and community professional development opportunities, and leadership development and coaching. By investing in your employees’ learning and development, you can create a culture that values growth, engagement, and commitment to the success of your company.