7 Ways Employee Professional Development Can Benefit Your Business
By: Benefits by Design | Tuesday April 25, 2023
Employee professional development is a great way to promote employee engagement, company culture, and save you time and money. And in today’s talent shortage climate, holding onto your employees is extremely important. Plus, upskilling opportunities is an attractive benefit to prospective employees.
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The Benefits of Offering Employee Professional Development
Helping employees continue to learn has many advantages, both for your business and for your employees.
Why Every Workplace Needs to Encourage Professional Development
1. Gives Employees Something to Work Towards
Employees who are working towards expanding their knowledge often have a vision for their future. Providing employee professional development opportunities gives them growth goals and purpose. Having an educational objective(s) is also a great tool for employee reviews, as you can set specific target dates along the way – or SMART goals.
2. Improves Employee Confidence
Depending on the type of education, employee professional development can also help advance their careers. Certificates and diplomas can lend confidence and credibility to employees, which in turn helps with the perception of your company overall.
3. Makes Employees Feel Valued
When you invest in employee professional development, you are showing you value them. Being involved in their educational journeys shows you see the potential in them. And it proves to employees that you’re willing to put in the effort if they are.
Employees can easily understand the value of this employee benefit. Not only in terms of the newly acquired skills and understanding, but also in terms of the monetary value provided.
4. Fosters Company Loyalty
Employees are more likely to stay with a company that helps them pay for their continuing education. In fact, according to the LinkedIn 2022 Global Talent Trends report, businesses who were rated highly on employee training saw 53% lower employee turnover. The same report also found 59% of professionals believe businesses should invest in professional development opportunities in order to improve company culture
Some employee development plans can have agreements where an employee is obligated to remain working for the company for a specified period after their education is complete. However, these are becoming less common because it can have the opposite effect. Instead of making the employee more loyal, it makes them feel trapped. And this feeling could lead to the idea that they need to get away as soon as possible.
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5. Increases Employee Productivity
Employees who feel valued and cared for are more productive and engaged. And on the flipside, 26% of employees feel being undervalued and underappreciated is the highest barrier to engagement. And it’s hard to argue with the logic that employees who have more education and experience are going to be better and more efficient at their jobs.
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6. Saves Time and Money
This is something every business can get on board with. You can advance employee careers not only with educational value, but also by promoting from within. Saving you money in hiring and onboarding costs. Depending on the type of employee, you could be looking at anywhere from “$1,500 for an hourly employee, or 1-2 times an employee’s annual salary“.
And saving you the time on training and meshing them in the company culture. And lastly, there is little to no risk that the employee will not be a good fit.
By improving your current employee’s value, it’s easier for employees to “rise through the ranks” within your company. And like so many terms in the professional world, there’s a new buzzword to describe this: Quiet hiring. Which basically means that instead of hiring from without for new or vacated roles, employers are hiring and promoting from within.
7. Improves the Client Experience
Helping employees with their upskilling can keep them abreast of industry news and trends.
And when current employees’ skillsets and knowledge are up-to-date, or of a high standard, the clients know they are in good hands. The way employees speak and interact is usually indicative of the knowledge and understanding they have of the topic or demonstration.
Lastly, employee professional development helps with consistency. So, what is being presented to your clients is the same no matter which employee is showcasing your product or service.
When it comes to investing in your business, one of the best ways to do so is through employee professional development. The many benefits certainly outweigh any costs of time or money, and the loyalty and culture that it fosters is a key component to any thriving business.