Make your training budget pay dividends

Proving the return on investment (ROI) you make in training is always a tricky one for HR. Sometimes the mere mention of those three little letters is enough to get everyone running for cover. But can it really be that hard to prove youÍre getting payback for the money you’ve paid out?

You may argue that you always receive such positive feedback from the training courses you’ve organised. Doesn’t that prove the investment is worth it?

Well, no, it doesn’t. Proving the value of training goes far beyond the “happy sheets” that participants complete at the end of their course. Ticking boxes to show how satisfied they are with the trainer, the venue, etc, does not prove that training is having a positive impact on your business (which is the point of doing the training in the first place).

The only way that training will ever deliver real value is if it is followed up when employees are back doing their day job. The trouble, as ever, is with line managers. Their responsibility shouldn’t end when their member of staff steps into the training room.

So perhaps one of the first areas HR can make an impact is giving line managers the appropriate training to ensure they play an active role in developing staff and improving performance. And this needs to be viewed as a critical part of their role, not just something they squeeze in when they can.

If you’re thinking of reviewing your training processes, the figures on our front-page news story might just give you the impetus to do it.

Employees should receive relevant, ongoing training, and not just a one-size-fits-all model administered in a classroom. And while offering training opportunities may persuade talented people to work for you and stay with you, chucking money at training does not automatically make you an employer of choice.

Ultimately, it’s not the size of your training budget that matters; it’s what you do with it that counts.


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