Training is an integral aspect of any successful business or organisation. Without it, employees can’t learn new skills or keep up with the latest industry developments, with negative consequences for employers.
But it’s not enough just to have a learning and development programme in place, it needs to be efficient and effective.
The first important step is for a company to review its existing offer. If it isn’t yet mapped into an apprenticeship standard, then consider the vast amount of benefits involved.
More than 250,000 workplaces across England currently offer apprenticeships, and they’re a proven way of nurturing talent, responding to skills shortages and achieving growth. Existing employees can complete an apprenticeship too, it doesn’t mean external recruitment is required.
Make sure your training programme is properly structured. Look at each job level within the organisation and develop a bespoke pathway with specific targets in place to meet business needs and certain standards.
This should form a clear outline of what individuals need to do in order to develop and progress to the next level, what is expected of them, the courses available and the qualifications they lead to. It may even result in the creation of new roles.
A key element of a successful learning and development programme is to make it attractive and appealing to employees. Be clear on how will it benefit them, their career path and the place they work in general.
A crucially important consideration is that once the Apprenticeship Levy comes into force as of April 2017, businesses with a wage bill of more than £3m will have to pay a levy of 0.5 per cent of their payroll to help fund apprenticeships across the UK.
This means now really is the time to review existing processes and if necessary find out how you can utilise the levy to fund training and improve your learning and development offering.