Training is a key goal of organizations around the country. In fact, some data suggest that employee training and development was one of the biggest focus of HR departments in 2019. Effective training can boost employee productivity, retention, and morale, as well as the competitiveness of the organization as a whole.
Understanding that training is important and necessary is just a first step, however. Some companies implement training simply because they know training is important. That doesn’t mean they’ve carefully thought out the overall strategy and execution of training.
This might produce minimal positive results and can actually end up doing more harm than good. For this reason, it’s important to recognize not only the benefits of effective training but also the potential pitfalls of ineffective training. Here are a few of the primary potential pitfalls.
Perhaps the most obvious cost of ineffective and poorly planned and executed training is the time spent on that training. That includes the time of the training staff, as well as the employees participating in the training. If the training is ineffective, they’re better off focusing on their primary job functions.
Relatedly, ineffective training represents a financial loss, as well. Not only does the time of those involved translate into money, but there also may be costs to bringing in external trainers or developing training materials.
Time and money are examples of wasted resources that can come from poorly implemented training. But the impacts go beyond simply foregoing a better use of resources. Poor training can make your company worse off than it would have been with no training at all.
The impact of poor training on morale is a great example of this. Employees who go through ineffective training can start to feel disengaged, and their morale often suffers when they spend time and effort learning something new without feeling a genuine improvement in their abilities.
Regulatory and Safety Concerns
There can also be very real consequences from a legal/regulatory and safety standpoint when employees are given incorrect, incomplete, or obsolete information. Whether it involves handling customer data or driving a forklift, poor training can teach bad habits.
Employee training is crucial for success in the modern economy, but it has to be done right. Simply throwing together a training program can do more harm than good from a resource, a financial, an employee engagement, and even a legal and regulatory standpoint.
Taking the time to put together a sound training program will ensure the time and money invested into training have positive returns.