Though the Great Recession is now officially in the past, South Florida companies are still being forced to do more with less, even as technology evolves at a breakneck pace. In this environment, training budgets can quickly get out of hand, eating up dollars that could be going somewhere else in your department. Before your budget gets slashed any further, there are several ways to maximize your training dollars without cutting corners, while at the same time helping your team grow and reach their goals.
Encourage Outside Training Programs and Professional Development
IT training doesn’t have to happen on-site. There are many professional organizations and South Florida college campuses that offer classes to help develop tech skills. Encourage employees to seek out these opportunities. Based upon the cost of the program, the company could either split the fees or pay for the entire program.
Consider offering incentives for those employees who seek out professional certifications. Many South Florida companies will foot the entire bill for a certification if the employee promises at least two years of employment after completion. This not only helps to squeeze more from the training budget, but also encourages greater employee retention rates.
Look for Online Training Opportunities
Online programs cost significantly less than on-site programs. Seek out third-party training bodies that offer remote learning opportunities. When purchasing these programs, don’t simply buy them online. Call a sales representative and speak with someone directly in order to negotiate a better rate or a group discount.
Develop Strategic Partnerships
Group discounts are greater the more participants you have. Seek out other South Florida companies looking to maximize their own IT training budgets and combine your resources. A group discount for 50 will be far easier to negotiate and will result in a deeper per-person discount than a group of 25.
Create a Peer Mentoring Program
Most IT people learn by doing. That’s why so many tech pros are self-taught in a variety of skills. Never underestimate the power of learning on the job. Assign mentoring partnerships among your team members. Develop the partnerships strategically, matching up employees who can learn from each other. Set aside time once a week for the partners to get together and work on a project. These mentoring arrangements can help strengthen team dynamics while improving on-the-job training efforts.
Partner With An IT Recruiter
Oftentimes, employees require additional training because they don’t come to the table with all of the skills required for the job. There is a lot of give-and-take in the South Florida IT hiring market, given the current and well-documented IT skills gap. In order to connect with employees who are well matched for open positions, consider working with a South Florida IT recruiter. These niche firms have a deep bench of top IT talent, and they are able to match those employees with opportunities where they can use their skills.
If your South Florida organization is looking for innovative ways to recruit and retain talented, highly skilled and pre-trained IT employees, CERS can help. We are a nationally recognized recruiting and consulting firm based in the South Florida area that works with companies to help them develop and execute strategic hiring processes. If you want to stay ahead of the curve and maximize your training dollars, contact the team at CERS today.