Vocational training fosters employee motivation, maximizes performance and grows business. On the other hand, it is a springboard for a promotion, a career change and a significant increase in job satisfaction. However, some discredit it.
Let's see what are the 10 false myths concerning professional training and let's compare them with statistics.
1. "Only large companies have access to training"
88% of small businesses offer training to all or to most of their employees. 74% of the same SMEs record a growth rate of revenues within 18 months from the end of the training.
Corporate training does not necessarily mean courses in the classroom, expensive travel and employees away from the offices for huge periods of time. There are more flexible and economically advantageous options that small (and large) companies can enjoy, such as e-Learning and in-house training (also through job shawing, knowledge sharing sessions, sending a delegate to a course with resulting report of information dissemination in the company).
2. "Having a certificate will not help me find work"
Are we really convinced of that? Let's see what the data say in this regard:
- 89% of employers believe that people with IT certification tend to get better results than individuals not IT certified in similar roles;
- 41% of Project Managers responding to an AMA survey stated that being PMP certified (Project Manager Professional) helped them get a job. 68% of respondents had this certification;
- 42% of companies prefer to hire staff with certified skills.
Certainly certifications are more in demand in some professions (e.g. IT), but, in general, a certification consistent with one's role enhances the candidate in the selection process. Moreover, the CV is necessary for the selection to certify that the candidate has the necessary skills to carry out the required work: the CVs containing an official certification for the tasks performed will not only demonstrate the candidate's commitment in his role, but will prove that it he learned the skills required to fulfill his role according to a particular standard.
3. "Professional development is not a priority"
Employees often think that managers do not take their professional development into consideration. 80% of training professionals consider employees in "developing" ways to be valuable, even in a longitudinal perspective. Furthermore, 24% of companies offering comprehensive training benefit from a profit margin of 24% higher than those who spend less on training.
However, training and development budgets do not always reflect proper attention to professional development. Employees should express their desire for training to their managers, who, in turn, should be a business case for the training of top management. To work best, professional development should be a priority for both employees and managers.
4. "Training cannot be digital"
Does training for professional development make sense only if done in the classroom? No. Today's professionals are increasingly technology-savvy, if they are not even digital natives (millennials). By 2025, it will be the millennials that make up 75% of the workforce and, already today, 67% of people use mobile devices to access online training courses. But the training has become digitalized and evolved - and is constantly evolving - to adapt to this context. From microlearning to webinars, from mobile learning to training apps: there is a wide range of tools to adapt the training to all the most current learning styles.
5. "E-learning is not recognized as classroom training"
Despite the growing popularity of e-Learning, someone still has the concern that it is not worth as much as classroom training in the presence of a teacher. Online learning is just a training delivery methodology: what really matters is the accreditation of the course provider or his offer of certifications and certificates of value. In addition, online training gives students the opportunity to learn at their own pace and improves information retention. The following data shed more light on the real value of e-learning:
- 88% of employees say that e-learning helps them more on a daily basis than classroom learning;
- companies that offer online training tools to their employees have registered a 50% increase in productivity;
- companies offering online training and on-the-job training can generate 26% more revenue per employee.
6. "I will have to pay from my own pocket for training"
Who pays for employee training? The employer. Certainly, but it is also true that professional training is an effective way to motivate employees and "keep them" in the company, encouraging them to grow within it and avoiding an expensive turnover. We also consider that 76% of millennials believe that professional development opportunities are one of the most important elements of corporate culture.
Moreover, thanks to government funding and professional and / or associative funds it is possible to receive incentives to train new and existing staff.
7. "The training courses are too theoretical"
In reality, today the possibilities to make a training course practical and interactive are many:
- role play games
- virtual reality
8. "Microlearning is not as effective as long-term training"
The longer the course the more effective: it is not always true. Microlearning cannot and will not arbitrarily replace long-term training (especially about technical topics and intensive development courses), but for many companies, it is becoming the most popular training method given the hectic pace of life and work.
Microlearning offers small training modules, usually in video format, so that employees can learn at their own pace. This method increases information retention by 20% compared to long-term training. Furthermore, the training modules can be produced in 300% less time and 50% less in cost than traditional courses.
9. "The courses on the prevention of well-being and mental health at work are not useful"
Some people do not recognize the value of training for the protection of well-being and "mental health" among employees. To better specify the concept of well-being in the workplace, we recall that (compared to those experiencing psychological distress):
- 37% are more likely to conflict with colleagues;
- 80% suffer from low concentration;
- 62% take longer than is necessary to complete the activities.
In reality, having serene employees who know how to face and manage challenges and work stress is not a problem to be overshadowed, because:
- 1 employee out of 3 experiences some form of psychological distress during the career
- these forms of malaise cost employers between 33-42 billion pounds a year and the UK economy £ 74-99 billion a year
10. "Learning stops after leaving the training course"
Professional learning initiatives do not have to be external, costly or relate to classroom training. Organizations can greatly benefit from implementing internal learning cultures to support and encourage continuous learning and sharing and applying new knowledge and skills among employees. In fact, the best performing organizations are five times more likely to create learning cultures within them.
But how to implement a learning culture?
- Bring training ROI data so that the entire organization understands the value
- Offer incentives to people who implement learning initiatives internally
- Use technology to share new skills within the company, for example via Skype sessions
- Exploit the possibilities offered by e-learning training to meet different learning needs and styles