To be more competitive companies must train. However, with escalating costs and the need to develop a new generation of workers, companies have every right to be concerned about the added expense.
However, not training is not an option as Pete Little, retired engineer said, "Training might be expensive, but not training is extravagant."
So below are some ideas to help you and your company maximize your training dollar. Hope you enjoy and perhaps add more to the comment section below.
Only buy the training your staff need. Skills assessments and evaluations are very important at determining skills gaps. It is much cheaper to have a consulting firm or community college perform a skills evaluation of your talent than just sending them to a series of classes that they do not need.
Also by doing so you will be able to identify the true skill sets future personnel need to possess and will help you design a custom curriculum just for your organization.
Partner with your training providers and make long term commitments and strategies to get bulk rate and preferred customer discounts.
Invite the president of your local community college to the table and show him your needs so that a long term program and technical training strategy is developed. Also challenge the president to help you uncover state, federal and college grants. Many regions offer incumbent worker grants that cover or drastically reduce the cost of training. Also be willing to serve on industry advisory council to make sure that the community college provides the level of instruction your organization needs.
Be a showcase employer and allow the media to cover success stories of your employees progress and development.
When your upper management balk at investing at training and pose the infamous standard question, "What if we train them and they leave?"
You should respond by highlighting a collection of maintenance failures, like the Deep water Horizon oil rig and other OSHA violations and fines for your industry then ask them this important question, "What if we don't and they stay?"
To help address this challenge, many companies require employees to sign long term commitments or training cost reimbursement contracts if they choose to depart before a given time frame.
Also make sure your HR team emphasizes hiring veterans. Although their resumes may be loaded with military jargon and acronyms, they possess many transferable skill sets that many companies would dream of adding to their team.
And remember this classic quote "Ignorance can be fixed, stupid is forever." So not training is truly stupid.