More than half of workers (57%) most prefer learning new skills through in-person job development opportunities during the workday. Businesses large and small should institute employee mentorship programs to improve their workers’ skills.
Employers should match employee preferences for in-person, ongoing job development and institute an employee mentorship program, according to a new survey report by Clutch, the leading B2B ratings and reviews firm.
Clutch surveyed 510 full-time employees in the U.S. to learn about their preferences regarding job development and retraining.
A mentorship programs may best meet the preferences employees have for job retraining, as it is led by supervisors and relevant to an employee’s daily tasks. Other forms of retraining such as educational videos are less likely to provide the continuity and personal interaction workers crave.
Nina LaRosa, marketing director at Moxie Media, a workplace safety, health, and HR online training company, says businesses should provide retraining that both helps employees do their jobs and prepares them for their future careers. Ideally, retraining should be:
- Relevant to completing the employees’ daily tasks
- Engaging enough to hold employees’ attention
- Flexible so that employees can receive help when they need it.
Employees Want Continuous Opportunities for Job Development
Close to half of workers (46%) most enjoy learning new skills during work hours and inside the workplace.
Employees are far less likely to appreciate job development opportunities that take place outside of the office and work hours.
Primarily, employees want to participate in ongoing skillbuilding activities, not one-off trainings.
“Training should not be a sporadic event,” said Pedro Santana, co-founder of SolidProfessor, an engineering training company that provides employee and manager technical training. “Ongoing training provides a better ROI for your business and better satisfaction for your employees.”
By offering continuous training through programs such as formalized mentorship, businesses can boost employee skills and morale.
Managers Must Know Their Employees to Develop Them
Two-thirds of workers (66%) believe the primary responsibility for employee development lies with direct managers and a company’s leadership team.
To develop employees, managers must understand their employees’ strengths, weaknesses, capabilities, and desires.
“Knowing details about the employee gives development professionals the power to strategically plan learning and development opportunities that align with employees’ needs,” said Neil Morelli, vice president of product and assessment science at Berke, an employment assessment technology company.
Morelli’s own company does not have cubicles and managers and employees sit together. Managers and supervisors also have access to assessment reports that chart each employee’s career history and professional interests to retrain employees who are strong cultural fits but have outgrown their current positions. This way, the company minimizes turnover and maintains a broadly-skilled workforce.
Clutch’s 2019 Workforce Retraining Survey included 510 full-time employees across the U.S.
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