Professional Development Opportunities

The Benefits of Offering Professional Development Opportunities in the Workplace

The primary goal of any business is positive growth. When a company prospers, it can be more selective about the new hires, afford better equipment, expand its products, services, and marketing efforts, and improve the staff’s development within the company. On the other hand, some companies grow too quickly without a proper growth plan in place. These companies experience high turnover rates, wasted time hiring and training new employees, and an underdeveloped and unmotivated staff.

Many people criticize the millennial generation for a comprehensive list of reasons, from high levels of technology dependency to a propensity to job-hop instead of sticking it out for a year or more. The technology criticism may be valid (though not just for millennials), but the job-hopping issue might be due to employers not investing in their employees. Successful and unsuccessful employers alike try to support their growth by retaining their employees – offering competitive pay and benefits and non-financial perks like strong company culture and freebies. However, one excellent perk they sometimes forget is offering professional development (PD) opportunities for their employees

What is Professional Development? 

Professional Development (PD) can come in multiple forms, from off-site workshops and seminars and online Six Sigma Black Belt certifications to memberships in professional organizations and even tuition reimbursement. Regardless of what they are, these programs and professional perks serve a noble purpose: to increase the skills of employees and show that the company is invested in them. PD improves morale and provides a little something for everyone to keep them aboard.

Benefits of PD for Employees

In today’s workplace, employees are frequently looking for the “next big step” in their lives. They anxiously seek to learn and gain new perspectives, skills, and knowledge of technology, work processes, and anything that will help them develop personally and professionally. When an employer refuses to better their staff, the employees can become discontented and jump ship in search of new opportunities where their abilities are appreciated and their growth is valued.

Here are a few of the benefits of offering professional development opportunities to mitigate employee dissatisfaction: 

  • Improved job enjoyment and employee morale
  • Increased employee motivation and efficiency and more opportunities for promotions and bonuses
  • Mastery of new technology and work processes through cross-training
  • Dynamic and challenging work environment makes employees more marketable

Benefits of PD for Employers

What’s good for the employees, is good for the employer. Instead of leading a company without an accessible professional ladder, employers offer PD opportunities to challenge employees to better themselves professionally and give them reasons for putting in the time and effort. As a result, the employer benefits from offering PD as well.

Here are some of the many benefits employers get to enjoy as a result of PD efforts for their staff: 

  • Diminished employee turnover (higher retention)
  • Fewer hiring costs
  • Improved company image
  • More qualified and driven applicants drawn by the PD offering
  • Training opportunities help to avoid incidents like sexual harassment and discrimination and promote diversity and tolerance

Professional development is a win-win. The employees are provided with opportunities to branch out and room to grow, while the employer reaps the rewards of having more developed and ambitious employees without the costs of constant on-boarding. If you are an employer or a professional looking for affordable online PD opportunities for risk management, project management, Six Sigma Black Belt, or any number of other fields in other professional industries, contact us at the Management and Strategy Institute, and enroll in one of our industry-recognized online programs today!