The unemployment rate for healthcare workers is 3.2% as of December 2015 (http://www.bls.gov/iag/tgs/iag62.htm). This fact means that if you are a Human Resources professional in the healthcare field, you must work harder than ever to attract and retain the best people. Employee development programs help you achieve these goals.
Employee development focuses on improving skills to benefit the employer (http://work.chron.com/distinction-between-employee-development-career-development-7121.html). Any type of training and development needs to address your employer’s goals. Consider topics such as:
- Communication Skills
- Conflict Resolution
- Employee Relations
- Customer Service
Benefits for the Employer
You might think the normal amount of required continuing education is enough for healthcare employees; however, programs that are normally reserved for corporate employees can be beneficial to healthcare professionals. Some reasons to implement employee development programs include:
- Grow Staff Members into Leaders- Traditional corporations use employee development to train people on how to lead teams. You can apply this same strategy to your healthcare organization. Leadership development reduces the time and expense devoted to find managers from outside the organization. You also open a new career path for interested employees.
- Improve Job Performance- Research shows that employee development programs result in better job performance (http://psycnet.apa.org/journals/apl/96/3/485/). Poor performance in the healthcare field has ramifications that simply are not present in other fields. Whether the topic is about improving communication or safety, instruction addresses weaknesses and strengthens existing skills.
- Reduce turnover- Every HR professional in healthcare worries about turnover for good reason.
- Voluntary turnover for 2015- 14.4%
- Total turnover in 2015- 19.2%
- Turnover increased from 2014 to 2015
The same study that demonstrated employee development improves job performance also noted that it reduced turnover when training recipients saw that the organization valued them.
- Lower Risks of Legal Problems- Issues such as sexual harassment and safety can lead to lawsuits. Training programs in these areas educate your employees on best practices. In turn, you improve risk management for your employer.
- Empower Employees- The best employees are the ones that solve their own problems. Instruction in topics such as communication, conflict resolution, and diversity can give staff skills to recognize and solve problems (http://managementhelp.org/training/basics/reasons-for-training.htm).
Training Programs that Work
You probably read the aforementioned statements, “Great, but how do I convince my boss to spend money this?” After all, not all programs work. The study that found employee development programs improve performance and reduce turnover discovered employees:
Must see career growth with the employer. Otherwise, they will leave for another organization and take their training with them!
Obviously, you do not want to waste valuable training dollars. Learn what is important to your employees (i.e. advancement into a leadership role, growth as an individual contributor) and make sure you spend resources on development programs that meet both of your needs. Communicate to employees that their growth is in your interest, too.
In addition to guaranteeing that people see themselves as working for you long-term, successful development programs:
- Have clear goals
- Use practical examples
- Allow employees to apply what they learn
Employee development programs are a great tool to develop your own leaders, improve performance, reduce turnover, and manage risks. Take practical steps so you can get maximum results from mentorship programs, classes or webinars.