Times are tough at the moment for many businesses, to say the least. The current UK inflation rate is sitting at 11.1%, so employers are under a lot of pressure to increase salaries and keep up with the rising cost of materials and products they require. 

Many businesses have had no choice but to review their budgets and prioritise as best as possible, which can, unfortunately, involve cutting out or skimping on less urgent costs.

One of those costs facing the chop may well be the training budget. Before you make that decision, read on and find out why learning and development for your business should remain a priority.

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Training is an investment that, if done correctly, can have a huge positive impact on your team’s performance and the success of your business.

According to the LinkedIn 2022 Workplace Learning Report, having opportunities to learn and grow is now the number one factor that people say defines an exceptional work environment.

Learning and development in many businesses has become a more strategic function, helping organisations to refocus on rebuilding or reshaping their business to future-proof for what is next.

The benefits of training

A well-planned and thought-out training budget can bring the following benefits:

Reduced Costs

Training can help to reduce costs in the long run by upskilling your staff to carry out work in a more efficient way. This could prevent the need for outsourcing services, streamline processes and mitigate the need for micromanagement, freeing up your senior employees to allow them to focus on improving your business.

Improved capability

Having development and training plans in place for your staff will greatly improve their capability. This means that, if new opportunities for growth arise in the future, you have the skills in-house already and can look to recruit internally, reducing the need for external recruitment, which takes up valuable time and money.

Better customer service

Your employees are the key gatekeeper between the business and your customers; make sure your employees have the skills and capability to give the best service possible.

Realised potential

Training can bring out the best of your employees’ potential, increasing employee engagement and, in the long run, maintaining retention. If you are seen to be investing in your employees’ continuous improvement, their loyalty to you will strengthen.

Retention of talent

In relation to recruitment, when prospective candidates are looking for their next job opportunity, it’s not just about the pay package; in addition to this, one of the main things which is desired and valued is the opportunity to develop and learn.  To ensure you stand out in a competitive market, you need to promote what investment you will make to that person’s development. This will also help to improve your business’ employer brand.

Keeping up to date with trends and developments

In this ever-changing technological world we live in, it is crucial for many businesses to keep up to date with technological changes, stay one step ahead and ensure your employees are informed with technological advancements and are ready for whatever is thrown at your business.

Meeting legal requirements

Last but not least, it is important to remember that for certain qualifications, renewal is required. It is important to stay on top of this, not just to make sure the qualification is valid, but also to improve knowledge, keep up to date, and maintain and improve confidence.

Will you reconsider your training budget?

In the broader sense, a lack of training and development opportunities is also having an impact on the UK’s economy; according to the Learning and Work Institute, employer’s investment in training has plummeted 28% since 2005, which has put the Government’s ambition of a highly skilled, high wage economy at risk.

Where next?

To help ensure that your training budget is relevant and going to reap the rewards, create a ‘training needs assessment’ to really focus on what your business priorities are in terms of future-proofing.

Ask yourself: What skills are currently missing and what is already available? You may already have resources in-house to upskill your employees without the need of training, meaning you can use your training budget more effectively.

At MAD-HR, our team work hard to ensure that your training budget is used effectively, developing and implementing training plans and interventions with clear measures to ensure the training is supporting your business’s output and growth.  Contact a member of our friendly team today to find out how we can help build the skills and capability of your team.