human error. The second risk is the associated reputational risk
arising from service disruption to customers or breaches in securi-ty
that expose confidential customer data.
For businesses, the implications are straightforward.
Organizations want to be able to use cutting-edge technology if
it gives them a competitive advantage in delivering better value to
customers, reduces operating expenses and improves bottom lines.
Keeping your technical workforce well trained is the key to success.
COST VERSUS QUALITY
From the technology vendor perspective, training content develop-ment
strategies have to keep pace with the changes in the business
environment. It takes longer to produce high quality training con-tent,
but the shelf life of training content is shrinking. This mirrors
the shelf life of the associated product.
At the same time, customers expect to find training that is accu-rate
and current. Training departments of technology companies
have to find a way to meet customer requirements and internal
stakeholder expectations. The tradeoff between cost, quality and
time is starting to resolve towards meeting time-to-market expec-tations
with good enough quality on a reduced budget.
What training models deliver on these needs? Employees prefer
live instructor-led training for its effectiveness. However, em-ployers
themselves prefer e-learning and on-demand training to
support the continuous learning needs with minimum disruption
to work while keeping training costs under control.
BEST PRACTICES FOR SOLVING THE ISSUE
To address this challenge head-on, organizations need to evolve
their training strategies. These strategies need to include skill de-velopment
while providing access to the latest updates from the
technology vendors whose products and services the organization
Technology training demands usually fall into three main
1. New technology adoption: Enterprises increasingly expect
education to support business value realization in addition to
enabling successful go-live strategies.
2. Ongoing technology management: Companies recognize the
need to access the exact learning content they need, when
they need it, quickly and regularly.
3. Career development: Learning opportunities are among the largest
drivers of employee engagement and strong workplace culture.
Managers are struggling to understand the different training
modalities available, and determining which make most sense for
their teams. Lines of business leaders need to find the most com-prehensive
solution to meet their training needs, across all vendors.
In general, instructor-led training is best suited for new technology
adoption. That’s because typically, a project team needs to acquire
skills in a time-bound manner before commencing a new technol-ogy
rollout. For career development training, manager budgets will
drive the decision in favour of either instructor-led or on-demand.
We live in a metric-driven industry. Benefits have to be measur-able,
so the organization can clearly see the correlation between
training and the associated outcome. Time-to-market and defect
rate metrics are relevant for new technology adoption, while time to
respond and resolve could be useful metrics for ongoing technology
management. Employee satisfaction, engagement and attrition could
be potential measures of career development training. It’s important
to measure the satisfaction of the IT workforce, so management can
track over time whether the IT team feels that the company is equal-ly
invested in their wellbeing and their future development.
Finally, from a management perspective, a key measure of suc-cess
is that of operational efficiency. What is the cost of training
an employee per year? What is the cost of not training employees?
IT budgets are limited, and learners and employers alike are seek-ing
more agile, high-value technology training options. Since
ground rules are changing at a rapid pace and vendors are on the
hook to drive an outcome for the end customer, vendors need to
be able to provide the appropriate training for their users right out
of the gate.
Today, the value of accessing and consuming information more
quickly is far greater to the learner than simply the production
value of the training. Ultimately, for agile organizations and in-dustries,
the integrity of certifications becomes the catalyst for
up-leveling whole teams in step with the challenges ahead. n
Milind Gurjar is senior director and general manager
training & development
WHAT IS THE COST OF
TRAINING AN EMPLOYEE
PER YEAR? WHAT IS
THE COST OF NOT
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36 ❚ SEPTEMBER 2017 ❚ HR PROFESSIONAL