5 Reasons to Invest in Employee Development Now

Posted by Marbenz Antonio on January 4, 2024

Employers increasingly recognize employee development’s pivotal role in maintaining workforce engagement. Then this nurtures an internal talent pool and retains top-performing individuals.

Substantiating this awareness, Deloitte’s survey of millennials revealed that 63% felt their leadership skills were not fully developed. Then 71% of employees likely to depart in the next two years expressed dissatisfaction with the development of their skills. These figures are on an upward trajectory.

These statistics are potentially harmful to a company when there is a lack of investment in employee development. Convincing stakeholders to allocate time and resources to robust employee development programs can be challenging.

Here are 5 ways in which employee development can prove beneficial to your organization:

5 Reasons to Invest in Employee Development

1. Employee Development Helps Attract Great Employees

In the contemporary workplace, employees seek more than a transactional relationship with their work, especially as the boundaries between “work” and “home” have become increasingly blurred. They desire to be perceived as more than just a labor resource for a company. Notably, 82% of employees express the desire for their organizations to recognize them as individuals with unique goals and aspirations rather than mere resources.

When a prospective employee observes a company’s investment in employee development, it signals that the company is likely to value them and is committed to fostering both their professional and personal growth. According to the University of Phoenix Career Institute’s 2022 Career Optimism Index, 68% of respondents indicate they would be more inclined to remain with their current employer if more upskilling opportunities were provided.

Moreover, individuals actively seeking development are highly desirable candidates for open roles, as they demonstrate a keen interest in expanding their skills, thereby contributing to the company’s success.

2. Employee Development Keeps Employees Engaged

According to a 2023 Gallup study, nearly 70% of U.S. employees are experiencing disengagement at work.

Disengaged employees tend to be less productive and are more susceptible to burnout. They lack a sense of connection or loyalty to their workplace, making them more inclined to consider leaving. With the prevalence of remote work blurring the boundaries between professional and personal life, and the potential absence of the camaraderie often found in office environments, burnout and disengagement are on the rise.

Investing in employee development serves as a remedy by creating opportunities for employees to feel enthusiasm about learning and personal growth. It also fosters connections among employees as they engage in learning new skills together, providing a valuable avenue for building camaraderie.

3. It is an investment that pays off in the long run

While companies might hesitate to invest in employee development due to the absence of immediate returns, establishing pathways for employee growth yields significant long-term benefits.

One of the most evident returns is the substantial increase in employee retention. According to LinkedIn’s Workforce Learning Report, 93% of employees express a willingness to stay at a company longer if it invests in their careers. Additionally, a study by SHRM reveals that the average cost of losing an employee can equate to 6 to 9 months of their salary.

Even retaining just one employee because of a company’s commitment to employee development proves to be a worthwhile investment. The potential return on investment becomes even more compelling when envisioning a scenario where the majority of the workforce remains with the company over several years.

4. It creates promotable employees and strengthens the internal talent pipeline

Investing in employee development goes beyond retaining employees; it establishes a clear pathway for upward mobility within the organization.

Fostering a strong internal talent pipeline, rather than consistently seeking senior-level employees externally, offers numerous advantages. Existing employees are familiar with the intricacies of the company, reducing ramp-up time. Moreover, they already possess a sense of loyalty, having been part of the organization for some time.

5. It helps your organization be future-ready

Amid the pandemic challenges, it’s clear that many traditional workplace practices need to evolve to meet current demands effectively. Our understanding of how employees prefer to work is undergoing a transformation. Particularly with the adaptability emerging as a crucial factor in cultivating a more resilient workforce.

In hiring, 92% of talent professionals, as per LinkedIn’s 2019 Global Talent Trends report, prioritize soft skills over hard skills.. Additionally, 89% stated that when a new hire is unsuccessful, it’s often due to a lack of essential soft skills. Investing in employee development extends beyond merely upskilling employees with technical abilities. Prioritizing soft skills like effective communication and adaptability prepares employees to navigate any changes that may arise.

It’s easy to become absorbed in the day-to-day operations and management of a business. Employee development must be an integral part of every modern organization’s business strategy.

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