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Why Proactive Training & Development Is an Employer’s Competitive Advantage Today

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Since The Great Recession, our annual job market research has been tracking talent’s continued concern about keeping skills relevant, growing professionally and staying ahead of rapid technological change. While the majority are confident that they have the industry skills most needed today, many expressed an expectation to retrain for a new career direction in the future.

The want for security

Overall, staying employable and professionally significant is a very real concern shared by almost all respondents participating in our studies, regardless of generation. Despite the recovered economy and record-setting unemployment, workers are concerned about job security. When asked what threatens their employment most, professional relevance, skill currency, adaptability to change, and technological savvy among the top ten risk factors. This further underscores the idea that companies with a demonstrated commitment to helping employees conquer these threats will be the most sought after employers in a competitive hiring market.

Fear of being unprepared

Companies seeking to improve their employment brand can begin by taking a hard look at the training, professional development and technology they offer employees. Sixty percent of workers reported that the training they receive at work is inadequate. Further, almost 8 in 10 employees believe it’s important that they have access to the most up-to-date technology at work, but just half said their company is offering that. The majority also report that they aren’t being prepared for rapid technological change or for their next step on their career path. Almost all the professionals (88%) surveyed said that they are taking it upon themselves to keep their skills relevant and to stay marketable in the employment market.

Don't just focus on the new hires

Luring new talent isn’t the only reason to use training and career development in making the workplace sticky – keeping top performers is motivation too. After increased compensation, better advancement opportunities and the chance to learn new skills are the biggest drivers in the decision to make a job switch. Employees who feel professionally stagnant at their current company are six times more likely to be a flight risk than those who feel they are continuously growing. And those who are frustrated with their career journey progress are four times more likely to flee.

How to be sought after

Top performers and in-demand professionals have an unprecedented advantage in the job market right now. To become a sought after employer, a company needs to prove that it offers continual training, actionable development plans and clearly communicated career path opportunities to employees.

Click here to download our Training and Technology Report