Americans Blame Lack of Training for Lack of Promotions

Posted By Terri Williams on March 28, 2017 at 1:00 pm
Americans Blame Lack of Training for Lack of Promotions

A new report reveals that employees will be easy to leave and hard to hire in 2017.  The main reasons employees list for jumping ship: A lack of advancement opportunities and a lack of salary growth. But a new survey by Wyzant and could establish a link to training – or the lack of training – as one reason why some employers can’t advance or get a raise.

Excerpts from the survey reveal:

  • 71% of working adults have had to undergo training to keep or move forward in a position.
  • 48% of working adults have not be able to progress in their career due to lack of training.
  • 70% of working adults hope to advance in their career at some point.
  • 73% of working adults will need continued education in order to advance their careers in the future.

How much more money could workers earn if they pursued additional training?

29% Up to $10,000 per year
26% More than $15,000 per year
25% Up to $5,000 per year
21% Up to $15,000 per year


So, what’s stopping workers from battling lack of training on their own?

45% Cost
39% Family obligations
38% Time requirements
22% Nervous
18% Struggle with subject matter


Training matters to employees

Andre Lavoie, CEO and co-founder of ClearCompany, which provides talent management software, believes training is very important to workers. “Research shows employees are big fans of employee development programs; in 2016, 87% of millennials voted professional development as ‘very important,’” Lavoie says.

And the good news is that some companies are committed to keeping their workers trained. “In 2016, organizations spent around $70 billion for corporate training, and we’re seeing a greater alignment of ongoing workplace training incentives than ever before.”

Lavoie believes training is a win-win situation. “Employees are looking to be trained and companies are shelling out the money to do so because of its proven impact on employee retention.” And getting good employees to stay is profitable for companies. Lavoie notes that new hires have to undergo a transition period and they also have to get acclimated to their new surroundings. “It’s usually a better investment to train up a member of the team than bring in a new hire; also, top performers who are already integrated into the workplace culture are typically a more predictable and secure investment when it comes to succession training and growth,” Lavoie says.

When workers feel proficient, they have confidence that they’re valuable employees and they tend to be more involved, according to Lavoie. So, training helps them develop both job satisfaction and a feeling that they have job security. Lavoie concludes, “Employers that invest in their A-players and continue to train them will have higher productivity and build out loyalty with some of their best employees.”

Natalie Hackbarth, inbound marketing manager at Quantum Workplace, has a similar view. “Recent research by my team found 79.5 percent of employees at a company with a formal development program were engaged,” Hackbarth said. “Those with structured learning and development programs give employees more control over their own performance and success.”

However, for optimum effectiveness, the training needs to be consistent. “It needs to be given to employees regularly and on a variety of levels,” Hackbarth explains. “Sporadic training events, whether they’re in the form of webinars or cross training, leave employees open to becoming disinterested and eventually disengaged in their work.”

In fact, she believes that companies should develop a culture that encourages more learning rather than being satisfied with a lack of training. “Investing in your employees’ future will help your organization grow and allow employees to see how much leaders care about their future.”

Training and retention rates

Providing training opportunities is one of the best ways to increase retention rates. According to Jason Guggisberg, regional vice president at Adecco Staffing USA, “In our Definitive Guide to Building a Better Workforce, best-in-class companies — those with low turnover rates, sizable revenue growth and annual decreases in time to hire — are 22 percent more likely than other companies to increase company training to ensure employees have the critical skills necessary in their roles.”

In addition to increasing retention and keeping employees engaged, Guggisberg says this strategy can help companies increase their candidate pool. “For example, a manufacturing company may consider hiring an accountant with a background in food and beverage, whereas a year ago, someone outside of the manufacturing industry would not have even been brought in to interview. Implementing ongoing workforce training allows these companies to pluck candidates from different industries with skills that are valuable to the organization, like experience with new technologies, and train them on the specific skills needed to succeed in their new roles.”

Terri Williams
Terri Williams graduated with a B.A. in English from the University of Alabama at Birmingham. Her education, career, and business articles have been featured on Yahoo! Education, U.S. News & World Report, The Houston Chronicle, and in the print edition of USA Today Special Edition. Terri is also a contributing author to "A Practical Guide to Digital Journalism Ethics," a book published by the Center for Digital Ethics and Policy at Loyola University Chicago.

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