Training and Development – Top Tips

February 12, 2020

Our recent Training and Development Survey provided some useful insights for organizations and individuals who were setting their 2020 goals.
These are our top tips for organizations:

  • Provide Training!

Training allows employees to acquire new skills, sharpen existing ones, perform better, increase productivity and improve the way they work. Since an organisation is the product of what employees achieve, they should do everything in their power to ensure that they have the right knowledge and skills for the job.
From the survey results, we saw that 70% of our respondents felt that having certification training would deliver more benefit to their organization than other, less formal types of training.
[bctt tweet="Providing knowledge of an established methodology or framework, such as ITIL or VeriSM, means that you’re giving your team the tools to deliver real value to your customers."]
If certification training isn’t an option, make sure that other methods of training are utilised. One possible way is to assign mentors to newer members of a team. This can be beneficial to both the mentor and the mentored staff, helping them feel like there is a support network and an opportunity to discuss ideas. There’s a great blog here on how mentoring can be used in an Agile world. You can read it here.

  • Research your options

Almost half of survey respondents cited “cost” as the main factor when making decisions around training. Budgets can be tight, there may be other priorities for spending, but this could end up being a false economy. Staff who feel valued, who can see that there is potential for development and promotion, are more likely to remain with that organization.
[bctt tweet="Factor in the costs of recruitment, induction and starting a new employee and offering a good training program may look like the better option!"]

Many organizations still use classroom training courses. They send the employee out of the office for a few days and they return with newfound knowledge and a certificate.
This is probably the most expensive way of providing training. On top of the course fee, there are accommodation and travel costs, and possibly the cost of cover staff to ensure business as usual while someone is out of the office.
Look into the alternatives; is there someone in the team who could deliver awareness sessions?
[bctt tweet="If certification training is required, can you make use of an online course? Book onto a Virtual course? These are much more cost effective; the purchase price is usually much lower and there are less associated costs."]

  • Start where you are

To coin a phrase ?
Look at the point that your teams are at. What are they doing well? Where are they not performing as they should? What do managers and team leaders think is really needed? Work from there.
Look at whether there is real value in “sheep dipping” entire teams in one course. It can be good to have everyone talking a common language, but sometimes differing starting levels of knowledge may require an alternative approach.
[bctt tweet="Ask people what they need; conduct a training needs analysis, find out what’s important to both the individual and the department. The survey showed that in every case, training was more sought after than delivered"]

  • Check Back

Sending an employee off on a knowledge gaining quest is great. Hopefully, they will return full of new ideas and thoughts on how to improve. Don’t let it end there.
Can you work with them to help them implement some new ideas? Can small changes be made that improve ways of working? Listen to the feedback! Often new “converts” can have some refreshing perspectives.
[bctt tweet="Upskilling your team is vital. The world is changing, and organizations need to continually develop and stay abreast of new approaches and methods, so as not to be left behind. "]

Our tips for individuals are as follows:

  • Do your research

[bctt tweet="If you’re looking for a new position, check out the organization’s attitude to learning. We found that 20% of our survey respondents have never received any training from their employer at all."]
Consider the effect that this could have on your future career. Are you willing to source and fund training yourself? Can you commit to doing it in your own time? If not, we really recommend that you find out what any potential employer is willing to provide.

  • Where do you want to be?

Whether you’re in the role that you really want or are seeking a promotion or a change, look at job adverts and see which qualifications employers expect their personnel to have. Certain positions will have qualifications that are desirable, as well as essential. Can you demonstrate that you have, or are working towards everything that’s on the employers list? If so, then you’re already ahead of other applicants.

  • Take everything that you can!

[bctt tweet="If your employer is willing to provide training, take it! Even if it’s not really something that’s within your everyday remit. Expanding knowledge, looking at new practices and trying new things is never a bad thing."]

  • Keep an eye on the market

If you do have to fund your own training, then make sure that you are aware of what’s out there.
[bctt tweet="From the survey results, most people indicate they want training in some of the more traditional frameworks, like #ITIL and #COBIT. A large percentage also indicate that they would like training in some of the more emerging, newer practices like Green IT and AI."]
Find the right format to suit your requirements; online, virtual, classroom or self-study are some of the available options and your choice may be influenced by your availability, your budget or by your learning style.
If you’re investing in a certification course, make sure that you use an accredited provider. This is your mark of quality and an assurance that the content is up to date and related to the exam.

Download the Survey Report

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