Payroll is your biggest expense, and your employees are also your biggest asset. Even small investments in staff development go a long way for your company, and a robust professional development plan pays off in countless ways.
1) Attack the Skills Gap
Finding the skills you need is increasingly challenging, especially in rural areas like the North Country, but your new skilled workers may already work for you. Your best workers can learn skills. It is much more difficult to train someone to understand your product lines, your services, how your company fits into other supply chains, what your safety practices and requirements are, and even how to communicate effectively. If you have employees who have learned about your business, they can learn the skills you need to run your business as well. Since you can't always hire the skills you need, make sure your best employees stay with you by training them to fill the skills gap. Investing in those employees that you already know are good workers can result in huge payoffs when it comes to employee retention, productivity, safety, and loyalty.
2) Decrease Turnover and Increase Engagement
Employee turnover is expensive. While employee replacement costs vary across industries, salary ranges, and companies, even your lowest wage workers can cost around 15 percent of their annual salary to replace. For higher waged employees or salary employees, the cost is even higher, up to 30 percent of those annual salaries. According to LinkedIn's 2018 Workplace Learning Report, 94 percent of employees say they would stay at a company longer if it invested in their career development.
3) Become a More Attractive Employer
The number one concern for a millennial about their job is that it to be a development opportunity. (according to a 2016 Gallup Workplace poll). Gen Xers and Baby Boomers also rate development opportunities highly. When you attract the best workers to your facility, it is easier to foster that culture of excellence that produces positive results throughout your business.
There is always room for growth and improvement for all of your employees. Even a quick online seminar can help re-engage employees, or give them a new skill or insight that can add value to your business. Working to build a long-range staff development plan can have even bigger payoffs and is worth the time and investment.