Professional development throughout one’s working life is becoming increasingly important to younger generations, with one PwC report showing that the millennial generation in particular is “committed to their professional learning and development and this remains their first choice benefit from employers.” The opportunity to continue learning about their profession was even more important to millennials than flexible working hours — since many fear that without it, they cannot obtain the promotions they desire. Clearly then, attracting talent is one important benefit of offering continual professional development (CPD). In what other ways can your business benefit?
Adapting to Changing Times
In many sectors – including technology, media, and medicine, new technological advances are constantly changing the nature of the game. In terms of dental health, for instance, digital smile design that allows clients to see real images of how implants and veneers will look from all angles and even from within the mouth. This means that old-school graphic representations of results are now outdated. Investing in courses that hone on specific areas — including new equipment, imaging techniques, and even relaxation techniques — can help mark your business as visionary. You don’t have to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on further education. For instance, options like Udemy provide an affordable educational model with courses in 15 major categories, with 15 sub-categories under each category. Most courses are priced under $200 and there are various discounts offered seasonally, meaning that even small businesses can afford to keep each and every employee engaged and motivated.
CPD does not only have to be for employees. You may have created a visionary startup but postponed your studies along the way. CPD for managers as well as employees can be seen as an excellent way to keep you updated on latest technological and industry-specific developments. It will also keep you employable should you decide to venture into new territory. Researchers from Georgetown University state that in current times, around 30% of all job vacancies require a bachelor’s degree. Those who already have a degree, meanwhile, can specialize their knowledge further by opting for a Master’s degree. Doing so will enable them to earn around $17,000 more per year than a Bachelor’s degree holder.
Boosting Employee Performance
Keeping employees updated and offering them mentorship programs is about much more than simply retaining or attracting top talent. It enables your business to reap the rewards of highly motivated, skilled workers who are able to offer you not only solutions to existing problems, but also ideas for vital changes that can be made to roles, goals, or procedures. Having staff with qualifications such as MBAs will mean that they will constantly be on the lookout for ways to increase profit — be it through expansion, niche specialization, or offering new products and services that competitors are still unaware of.
The world is in constant flux and the savvier your team is, the less likely your business is to become irrelevant. CPD does not have to put a dent in your budget if you have a small business, since there are many free and affordable courses which are nevertheless detailed enough to make a difference to your employees’ knowledge base. Consider continuous learning for yourself as well; it will keep you on high-flying employees and enable you to identify major market shifts and demands.