Employee turnover and reduced staff during these challenging times makes it more important than ever to invest in your employees. Upskilling is when companies invest in teaching their staff additional skills. This way, employees can perform their job better while they stay up to date with all the latest trends and industry developments. They also get to fill skill gaps or even take on more senior roles within the company. This upskilling can take the form of assigning team members new projects outside of their current role. It can also be accomplished through mentorship and training programs.
Whatever way to approach the upskill goal, there are many reasons why you should take it on.
Learning from the World of Sports
In sports, the benefits of cross-training are clear. By mixing different activities into a regular workout routine one can avoid overuse injuries, balance the development between muscle groups, and prevent boredom. The same may be said of cross-training in the workplace. Employees involved in cross-training programs become skilled at tasks outside the usual parameters of their jobs and therefore become much greater assets for their company while gaining knowledge and skills that benefit them both personally and professionally.
Small Businesses Need Employees Who Can Wear Many Hats
Many small businesses use cross-training and upskilling practices regularly, although in a less formal manner than is usually written about in business journals. When an entrepreneur starts a business and makes those first hiring decisions, he or she will naturally look for candidates who appear to possess the flexibility to handle multiple and often unrelated jobs. The term “jack of all trades” is often considered a benefit in candidates looking to join a role working for a small business. Frankly, in a small business, it is often the norm to wear more than one hat.
Upskilling Increases Flexibility and Productivity
Professional development programs are a way to more formally organize the process of getting employees prepared to be able to do more than what they were hired to do. Growth within a role is a critical factor in employee success and retention. But beyond professional growth, such programs offer a wide variety of benefits for businesses as well. For example, a well-designed program can help reduce costs, improve employee morale, reduce turnover, and increase productivity. It can also give a company greater scheduling flexibility and may even lead to operational improvements. Perhaps the most important benefit that accrues to companies that implement cross-training programs, however, is greater job satisfaction among employees.
Formal cross-training and investing in professional development demonstrates that the company has faith in employees’ abilities and wants to provide them with opportunities for career growth. In an age when companies are always trying to accomplish more work with fewer workers, anything that helps to motivate and retain employees can be worthwhile. Employees often feel that their jobs have been enriched, and they are often able to contribute more to a firm by coming up with creative solutions based on drawing upon their knowledge of different company systems.
For more advice on how to hire and upskill multi-talented employees, connect with the team at Bergman Brothers today.