Companies spent 15 percent more on employee training in 2013

Online training courses allow you to reap the benefits of employee development programs without the typical cost.

You don’t have to spend a fortune to reap the benefits of employee development programs.

American companies across all industries are increasingly recognizing the importance of ongoing employee training and learning opportunities when it comes to safety, worker retention, productivity and morale. In fact, a recent report from Bersin by Deloitte shows that in 2013 alone average training budgets increased a staggering 15 percent.

Why is this trend on the rise? Numerous studies have shown employees who are given the chance to continue their education, improving and expanding their existing skill sets, have higher levels of professional satisfaction and are less likely to leave their jobs. Lower turnover rates alone can save businesses thousands upon thousands of dollars every year. Increased morale and higher levels of worker engagement have also been show to lead to dramatically improved productivity. In other words, executives and managers are realizing that continuing education programs have considerable return on investment and positively impact the bottom line.

It’s important to remember that learning opportunities are important across every department, division and level.

“No matter their role or level, everyone wants to feel like their strengths are appreciated, effectively utilized and built upon,” writes Andre Lavoie, a contributor to Entrepreneur.

From an entry-level employee to a top executive, constant learning is a key ingredient in the recipe for professional success. A new worker’s first introduction to your company should include comprehensive safety and job training, positioning them to meet expectations and do their job well. Once that basic threshold has been reached, managers can meet with employees to discuss short- and long-term education goals.

Ongoing training among supervisors is particularly crucial, as they set the tone for the entire company and in many ways determine its success or lack thereof. (For example, if you have unusually high employee turnover in one specific department, an unskilled manager might be to blame.) The importance of cultivating effective supervisors is apparent in the Bersin by Deloitte study, which found that, on average, 35 percent of last year’s learning and development budgets went to leadership training.

Across the country, the average company spent $1,169 per person on learning initiatives last year. The good news is that you don’t have to invest anywhere near that much money to reap the rewards you want. Rather than committing to expensive tuition reimbursement programs, sending your team offsite to pricey conventions and seminars or bringing guest lecturers to the workplace, explore the many cost-effective online learning courses available through Mastery Technologies.

Our employee training and development resources are efficient, engaging and effective. Whether your workers want to improve their so-called “soft” skills, like leadership and teamwork, or are looking to make strides in a specific area of technical study, such as computers, we have a course to meet their needs.

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