This post was contributed by Skyepack.
When it comes to your top priorities as a for-profit business, the first concern on your list is probably your bottom line. Investing in resources like custom continuing education courses for your employees may not even be on your radar. Since spotting the direct impact of custom continuing education opportunities on your bottom line can be challenging, many businesses hesitate to take advantage of them.
However, these opportunities do have a traceable impact on your business’s bottom line. Custom continuing education opportunities provide a variety of benefits for both your employees and your overall business. In this guide, we’ll discuss how these opportunities can benefit your business at every level, including how:
- Employees can develop new skills that will benefit the company.
- Continuing education opportunities can improve employee retention.
- You can advertise continuing development opportunities to prospective new hires.
- Continuing education may be required for legal compliance.
- Ongoing training empowers your organization to stay up-to-date with current trends.
Your employees’ skills and knowledge are what can set your business apart in your industry. In this guide, we’ll discuss the many reasons why continuing education courses can be a path to a thriving business. Let’s get started.
Employees can develop new skills that will benefit the company overall.
Providing your employees with continuing education courses empowers them to build new skills. Expanding what your employees can do for your business can create a workplace that is more productive and creative for everyone.
Here are a few of the ways that both your employees and your business benefit from continuing education courses:
- Employees are more efficient. With sharpened, up-to-date knowledge about their industry, your employees can do their jobs better. Continuing education courses provide employees with an opportunity to target and practice the skills they are weak in and improve their overall performance.
- Employees are more innovative. Continuing education courses allow employees to experiment with new knowledge and skills. This “safe space” to try new things can create an environment where employees aren’t afraid to think outside the box. Innovation is key to keeping your business fresh, and your employees can help bring you there.
- Employees can provide new offerings to your customers. Courses like data analytics or project management training allow your employees to bring something new to the table. With continuing education training, your employees can cultivate new skill sets that expand the services your business currently offers. This improves your customers’ experience and adds value to your business.
One way your employees can build their skills is by completing microcredentials.
According to Skyepack’s guide to microcredentials, these are short courses that your employees take to build and develop skills specific to their field. These opportunities give learners the additional education they need to get employed and motivate employees to keep learning by earning achievable motivational wins.
So, how can microcredentials benefit your company? Let’s say one of your employees is interested in pursuing a course that covers data analytics. After earning the microcredential, your employee can use their new knowledge in data analytics to perform their job more efficiently, develop innovative solutions and strategies, and provide data analytics services to customers.
Continuing education opportunities can improve employee retention.
If employee retention is a concern for your business, providing continuing education opportunities could be an effective solution.
Investing in your employees through continuing education opportunities shows that your business appreciates and values their contributions. Create a workplace environment that focuses on people and their professional development. If you prove to employees that you are committed to investing in their future for the long term, they will feel more motivated to stay at the company.
Continued learning opportunities can boost employee engagement, a measure of employees’ excitement about and commitment to their jobs. According to recent studies, employees who are engaged in their workplace are about 22% more productive.
You may be wondering — how does employee retention and engagement affect my bottom line? Retaining your current employees is far more affordable than recruiting, hiring, and training new ones. By using custom continuing education courses, your business can boost employee engagement, productivity, and employee skill sets in one step.
You can advertise continuing development opportunities to prospective new hires.
When choosing an employer, prospective employees are looking for more than just a salary.
Potential new hires are searching for employers who provide a great work-life balance, new learning opportunities, and the chance to make a positive change via workplace giving programs.
With that in mind, implementing continuing education courses is another way to add value to the benefits package. With businesses and employees everywhere adapting to the global impact of the pandemic, prospective employees may feel unprepared.
While it can be hard to find new hires, enticing potential employees with fulfilling professional development opportunities can increase the number of applications your business receives. Applicants looking for a company that will invest in them are drawn to businesses that provide continued learning opportunities.
Continuing education may be required for legal compliance.
In some industries, employees are required to complete continuing education training to comply with legal regulations. These regulations are usually in place to ensure the safety of both employees and customers. Here are a few industries that commonly require continuing education training:
- Financial services
While many industries require employees to continue their education, the type of training needed varies across industries. For example, employees may be required to complete a yearly refresher course or finish a certain number of training hours per year.
In these cases, providing employees with continuing education opportunities helps your business stay legally compliant. One way to provide continuing education opportunities is to use digital course materials, which are accessible for busy professionals with packed schedules. These materials make completing legally required courses convenient and don’t upset their busy work schedules.
Failing to remain compliant has risks your business won’t want to incur like large fines, loss of insurance, and dropped contracts. Make sure your business stays compliant by providing the proper continuing education opportunities for employees.
Ongoing training empowers your organization to stay up-to-date with current trends.
In a fast-paced world filled with rapid developments in technology, change is happening in industries all over the world. Your business is no exception. It’s possible that your employees’ core education and onboarding may be out-of-date, even if they completed training just a few years ago.
While keeping up with dozens of changes can be challenging, it is important that your business stay up to date. Earning a reputation as an out-of-touch business that is behind on the times paints you as a company that lacks drive and innovation. Continuing education opportunities inform and teach these changes to employees at every level of your business.
From new hires to seasoned professionals, every employee at your business can reap the benefits of a continuing education course. You can even take advantage of custom-authoring courses by using newly authored content, past content, and open educational resources to adapt the courses to your business’s niche.
While your long-term employees are probably the most knowledgeable at your business, they can benefit from updating their skills and learning with a continuing education program. Chances are, the technology and requirements for their role have changed drastically over the years. Giving these employees the opportunity to learn new industry-specific skills or develop their technical skills brings them up-to-date on the changes in the industry.
Staying on top of continuing education opportunities keeps your business in the loop and can even give you a glimpse into the future. A well-developed continuing education program gives your business the tools to quickly spot and implement new practices, technology, and trends.
Your business’s bottom line can benefit directly from providing continuing education opportunities for your employees. While there are hundreds of ready-made, generic courses available on the market, your business deserves a tailor-made approach. Working with an instructional design partner to develop custom training courses for your business helps you reap the benefits of continuing education courses like boosting employee engagement and keeping up with trends.
About the Author
Salma Torres, Instructional Editor & Content Curator at Skyepack
Salma graduated with a BA in English from Texas A&M University. With her background as a research scholar, she became a person who is continually learning and excited for new knowledge. Her passion for reading and writing helps her continue to create quality content for online learners. When she isn’t creating course content, she can be found traveling around the world, reading, watching the latest movie, or learning something new.