Regardless of the industry that you work in, some aspect of how your employees perform their jobs has likely changed since March 2020 thanks to COVID-19. For some companies, the unexpected pivoting may have resulted in newfound efficiencies, innovations, and collaborations. For others, it may have exposed significant cracks in operational procedures. Changes to how you do work might have you thinking about employee training.
Training is critical for improving employees’ job-related skills and to develop them professionally for future positions within the company. Unfortunately, sometimes corporate training can be cost-prohibitive. But don’t let course fees stop you from sending employees to training, there are many budget-friendly ways to offer training to employees.
Create a Corporate Learning Strategy
Before you open a course catalogue, make sure that you have a corporate learning strategy. Sure, Photoshop would be a fun tool to learn, but if it is not relevant to the employee’s position, then they should not be taking the course. Require that training requests be included in employees’ performance reviews and that they must be aligned with professional development goals and/or corporate objectives (Check out our favourite performance discussion questions here).
An added benefit of funnelling training requests through performance reviews is that you can identify common training needs within the organization and find cost savings in group training. For example, if you notice that many of your employees need MS Excel training, you can hire an instructor to come into the office to give a seminar at a lower cost than sending everyone out individually to attend a course. Knowing everyone’s training needs also helps to establish a training budget and prioritize what training should happen.
Implement a “Train the Trainer” Approach
Time and budgetary constraints can restrict the number of employees that you can send to formal training. Instead of sending the whole team, assign one person to attend the training. Require them to take notes and present a summary of the training to the rest of the team. Not only will this transfer the knowledge to the rest of the team, it is a great way to ensure that the employee retains the new information while also developing their presentation skills. Best of all, you only pay for one person to attend the training wile your entire team benefits from the information.
Low-Cost Training Solutions
There are many low-cost training solutions available to employers. For example, LinkedIn offers a learning tool that provides access to thousands of courses that your team can use when and where they want. Coursera and Udemy are other online learning websites that provide online learning at a reasonable cost.
You can also take advantage of the existing knowledge on your team. Ask employees who are experts in their field or who have attended training recently to create training for your team.
Many industry organizations, colleges and not-for-profit organizations put on free seminars. Get connected with your local business community to access their resources.
Canada-Ontario Job Grant
The Canada-Ontario Job Grant provides companies with direct financial assistance of up to $15,000 per training program per individual employee. The cost of the training is split between the employer and the grant. The size of the business determines the ratio of the split. Up to 100% of the training cost may be paid for if the employer hires an unemployed person. Employers must submit an application to be considered for funding.
Training does not have to break your bank; you just need to be resourceful and creative. If you want to partner with someone that can get you the appropriate training resources within your tight budget, contact us today. We will do the hard work for you so that you can focus on your other business objectives.