The benefits of employee training
The face of brick-and-mortar businesses, including the service sector, is changing. As new challenges arise from the impact of the pandemic, companies have to think on their feet.
Throughout the last year, 98% of UK restaurants have had to make changes to survive during coronavirus. Similarly, half of UK high street retailers have changed to offer convenient same-day collection, incentivising in-store shopping.
Internally, UK businesses are experiencing severe pressure due to staffing shortages, weighing down on their ability to operate as usual. A reported one in six hospitality jobs is currently vacant, with many businesses feeling uncertain about hiring and retaining staff. Suggestions to offer better pay and improve working culture are among increased efforts to attract and keep employees.
Cultivating and encouraging a positive working culture is a sure-fire way to nurture staff and benefit your business. When it comes to employee motivation, one method is through investment and training. Employee training can improve self-worth among staff, inspire engagement and reinforce their value.
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The way employees feel emotionally about their role can impact how they interact with work, including productivity. Studies show that the more learning opportunities employees receive to harness new skills, the more engaged they become.
Offering training shows you appreciate your employees, by giving them the opportunity to develop outside of their day-to-day work. Improving employee experience this way is essential for retention.
Upskilling and employee training offer a clear development path, inspiring employees as they imagine a future with the business. Training can help employees see potential career progression while explaining exactly how their efforts contribute to the company.
Encouraging pathways to develop skills builds excitement and anticipation for results, increasing employee self-worth. This demonstrates a two-way commitment as part of a clear partnership between employee and employer, rather than a one-way transaction.
Empowering employees with the opportunity and knowledge to foster their growth will benefit your business overall and inspire employees to stay on for longer.
It’s a simple conversion – happier employees make for happier customers. Training improves both employee and customer experience. Well-trained employees interact with customers with another level of confidence and accuracy, providing better service. Customers can tell when they’re dealing with well-engaged and informed personnel – which can reflect on the business.
Positive attitudes are contagious. The more valued, equipped, and confident employees feel about their job, the more successful their customer interactions – and your business – will be.
Within a business, everyone will benefit from boosting employee ability. Becoming a well-oiled machine is the goal as a successful retail or hospitality company. No one gains experience overnight, so ensure your employees know what they’re doing by providing regular, comprehensive training.
By giving employees tools to succeed, you can improve time efficiency, task accuracy and encourage a workplace culture that cares. Training ensures that everyone runs at the same pace, maintaining service at consistently outstanding levels of quality.
Is training worth the investment?
Employee training is a significant investment that will return increased sales and come to reward your business.
Creating better working experiences and encouraging room to develop with employee training can help your business save on expenses by reducing staff turnover. According to recent business insights by the Office of National Statistics, the highest proportion of staff turnover compared to last year was found within the food service and activities industry.
A high staff turnover rate can damage your business in numerous ways:
- Productivity loss
- Recruitment advertisement costs
- Frequent onboarding training
- Cost of equipment
Keeping your workforce happy is the key to better success. Improving employee engagement can offer many benefits for your business. According to studies by the American global analytics and advice firm Gallup, engaged workers can result in increases of:
- 17% productivity
- 20% sales
- 21% profit
Everyone appreciates amazing service with a smile. Customers will gravitate toward businesses where they feel well looked after and receive above and beyond service. You can achieve consistent customer service at high quality by ensuring your employees are equipped for the role through sufficient training and providing support as employees develop.
How to invest in employee training
Various types of employee training can benefit your business. Depending on your industry, you may need to do a little homework to maximise your team’s potential.
Here are just a few common examples:
Management training teaches employees to manage other members of staff, building skills that help them become responsible for a team or workforce. This can include staff motivation, productivity, work delegation, and soft skills such as feedback and evaluation.
For example, this might include customer service training or sales management training, designed to boost sales, improve customer experience, and understand how to read specific product markets.
Internal training is carried out from within your company. This could include anything relevant to your field of work, such as:
- Compliance training
- Soft skills
It ensures employees are updated with current training tailored to your business.
External training is where courses are delivered to employees by professionals in that skillset from outside the business. Training is typically held on the premises of the organisation.
It’s important to introduce regular employee training and designate time for training so development can become part of your normal monthly or quarterly routine. Normalising training ensures that it never stops being a priority for your business.
Here are a couple of suggestions to help make training part of your everyday business structure:
Identify objectives for all staff members and associate training with key performance indicators – Offer steps for development and a structure of training to follow, whether that’s with senior members of staff or internal training courses. Set up markers for career progression because of meeting expectations.
Ensure employees have time for training – Completing employee training takes time. Avoid burnout and employee frustration by not overloading employees with unrealistic expectations within their reasonable capacity. To encourage retention, this feeds back into showing empathy for your employees and their needs.
If you have room in your budget for employee training, this can motivate and encourage better sales. Trained employees are often engaged employees, so by investing in your staff, you may well see benefits throughout the workplace.
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