Why It’s Important to Choose the Right Corporate Training and How to Do It?
By Arijit Banerjee
Across the globe, organisations spend heavily on employee training and development. In the U.S alone, corporate training spend stands at 8-10% of companies’ total employee spend, with a total annual expense of over USD 100 billion. In India, the corporate training spend currently stands at only about 1-2% of total employee costs but the future looks promising. According to the IMF, India’s domestic corporate training market will be worth USD 100 billion by 2030.
Organisations are realising that corporate training is an important investment that contributes to businesses’ bottom line, leading to a heightened focus on choosing the right training and maximizing ROI.
Here are four reasons why businesses should choose the right training and how to do it:
#1 Ensure relevance: At a time when businesses, consumers, and technologies are changing at a rapid pace, the right training should equip learners with the latest updates along with the future skills they need to do their jobs well.
How to do it: Imparting ‘role-appropriate training ’that is customized to suit the needs of varying user groups is the best way to ensure relevance. For instance, take the role of customer service representatives and service engineers in a typical organisation. Both groups interact heavily with customers but each has its own set of procedures and challenges. The training must therefore be tailored to address their respective concerns. SAS provides role specific in-class and on-the-job training to recent grads to ensure that they are set-up for success in their new roles.
#2 Drive greater engagement and adoption: Training is often a dreaded word in corporate circles because it spells long classroom sessions and boring presentations. The right training, however, is one that matches the technique with learners’ style, preferences, and pace of learning.
How to do it: To keep learners engaged, organisations should leverage a blended training approach comprising a mix of social learning, gamification, virtual reality enabled role plays and simulations, 3-D tutorials, and self-paced learning tools such as webinars and podcasts. Higher learner engagement translates into greater training adoption. Bajaj Finance introduced ‘Super Manager Studios’ - a simulation based blended learning program that uses theatre based delivery mechanisms to combine real workplace situations with dramatic performances to boost employee awareness.
#3 Promote better information retention: The human brain is wired to consume information in short bursts and the right training should be in sync with this mental makeup.
How to do it: Microlearning is the way to go as the technique involves delivering short modules (typically under five minutes) that focus on one topic at a time and contain more visuals than text. Microlearning courses are known to drive 20% higher information retention as compared to long-form modules. Airtel leverages a microlearning platform to deliver on-the-go training to its vast employee base, and has witnessed terrific results in terms of employee engagement and adoption.
#4 Drive superior ROI: After the training, organisations should be able to gauge – whether learners are satisfied, what new skills/conceptual knowledge/desired behaviours they have acquired, whether they can apply them to solve real business challenges, and the expected bottom-line impact.
How to do it: Make use of theoretical/practical tests to assess before-after scores or conduct surveys, formal/casual group discussions, and use questionnaires to gauge the impact of training. Technology can also play a big role here – use gamification to analyse before-after scores or immerse learners in VR-enabled role plays or simulations to test their ability to perform a task. The Indian government’s ambitious Skill India mission leverages VR and AR technologies to impart skills training to youth.
Adopt a pro-training culture to future-proof your business
Millennials in India will constitute 75% of the country’s labour market by 2025. According to a recent Deloitte survey, more than 50% of millennials value the skills they learn on-the-jobover those learnt through higher education. For organisations, the writing on the wall is clear: if you want to attract and retain top talent, focus on creating a pro-training mindset and deploy the right L&D initiatives customised to the needs of your organisation.