Today, staffing can feel a bit like a revolving door. Employees come in and employees go out on a seemingly constant basis, which is especially frustrating when you consider the costs of turnover—both hidden and evident. An Inc. article estimates that the hidden costs, including those related to interviewing, training, lowered productivity and overworked remaining staff, can "run as high as 150 percent of an annual salary." It continues: "Turnover is expensive. Sometimes it cannot be avoided, but when it can, you should avoid it by doing the right things for your employees." The right thing, in many cases, manifests in added learning opportunities.
How to Improve Employee Retention by Augmenting Your Training Program
For many, increasing salaries is not a viable option to entice employees to stay at their companies. At the same time, some employers dread training, as it takes employees away from daily tasks and is an experience that they feel no one really enjoys. By treating training as a mutually beneficial company perk rather than a necessary evil, however, you're solving both of these issues at once. Per Training magazine: "By investing the appropriate training in an employee, they will develop a greater sense of self-worth as they become more valuable to the company. The company, too, will gain specific benefits from training and developing its workers, including increased productivity, reduced employee turnover, and decreased need for constant supervision."
Conduct initial training for all of an employee's daily tasks
When you do have new hires, establish early on an appreciation for those who take advantage of opportunities for learning and self-development. A simple way to accomplish this is to provide them a means of not only understanding their daily tasks, but also seeing that you take training seriously. Training points out: "Associates want to feel that the job they do is important to the success of the business and that the business is investing time and money in them to have the job done correctly, and at the highest level." So, equip new employees to contribute to business operations and strategy, allowing them to feel fulfilled in their work environment.
Develop an established program for continued learning
Now that you have provided your new hires with their initial learning opportunities, don't make the mistake of considering the task to be complete. According to CIO Insight, "a surprisingly low percentage of companies are providing ongoing training programs—even though an overwhelming majority agree that these programs are important...However, those companies that make the effort are reaping the rewards of greater employee engagement, productivity and retention." In order to accomplish this, create a dashboard or sign up with a training provider that can serve as a knowledge base for ongoing tasks. By giving employees a means to learn on the job, you're also enabling their initiative to take on more responsibility or devote time and energy to your company's innovative efforts.
Transform the notion of continued learning into employee development
You have taken the time to set up a knowledge base for continued learning—now make it more enticing. The good news is that this effort doesn't take much of a spin to ring true: In learning more, your employees are bettering themselves at the same time.
The Wall Street Journal advises employers to "[f]oster employee development. This could be training to learn a new job skill or tuition reimbursement to help further your employee’s education." As you've heard from us before, there are also lots of incentives available to get employees on board with training, such as the gamification model. But first step back and take in the bigger picture. These days, it's much less likely that an employee gets hired for his or her first job and stays with that company through retirement. For many, each career opportunity is also viewed as a development opportunity. Show them that by staying longer, they'll have more of a chance to add to their skill sets and assume responsibility. This type of fulfillment can go a very long way.
Want to learn more about the different types of virtual training available and how you can integrate them into your current learning opportunities? Download our complimentary eBook, "Choosing a Virtual-Training Method that Meets Your Needs."