Training is a challenge for many small businesses. The cost. The time employees spend away from doing their job. But keeping your team’s training up-to-date is not only crucial for career development and employee retention, it helps your business stay on top of industry trends and best practices.
So, how can you integrate training into your culture? Here’s four ways to provide employee training without sacrificing productivity or breaking the bank.
1. Send One Person Not the Whole Team
If there’s more than one person needing the same training, send one and ask them to present what they learned to the rest of the team. It allows that team member to gain experience presenting, will help them remember what they learned, and it will give the rest of the team an opportunity to learn the new skill or insight from someone who knows how to apply it to your business.
2. Use Webinars
You can find a webinar or training video on virtually any subject you can think of. Most of them are free or low cost. Sites such as TED, Lynda, Creative Live (available through the Vancouver Public Library) and of course Small Business BC’s webinars, make training easy to access and participate in.
Another good resource can be your vendors. Learn how to use the tools, products and services from the people providing them.
Make a list of the webinars and videos you’d like your employees to view. Schedule time for them to watch or attend them. And offer incentives for participating.
3. Create Your Own Training Videos
Do you have employees that work remotely, or shifts that make it difficult to train them? Consider making your own training videos. It doesn’t have to be slick and movie like. Simply use a smart phone or tablet to record you performing the task in the way you need them to do it and send it to the relevant team member. You can even encourage your team to make them for each other and create a library for any new employees you onboard.
4. Apply for the Canada-B.C. Job Grant
If you do need to pay for training, remember there is financial help available. The Canada-B.C. Job Grant can provide up to two-thirds of employee training costs (a maximum of $10,000) for each employee trained per fiscal year.
And if you are expanding your team and employing a previously unemployed person, you could be eligible to be reimbursed for 100 per cent of the training costs, up to a maximum of $15,000 per fiscal year, for that employee.