Training over a Pay Increase?
Generation Y and the Value of Further Development in the Workplace
By Ken Graham, Director, Training
Adecco Employment Services Limited
A survey of more than 2000 employees by ICM Research found that 69% of employees feel more valued by a company when offered training and development opportunities. Younger employees in particular are more likely to value extra training in their careers, with 33-35% of 18-34 year olds rating further training and development as the most appealing alternative to a pay increase.
The survey also showed that 66% of workers agreed further training would make them feel better about their job and the company they worked for, while 60% indicated that they would be less likely to leave the company if they were offered training.
With many companies still recovering from the most recent economic unrest, training and development is one of the most cost effective ways to keep motivation and engagement high within an employee base. And, according to recent studies, leadership and management training are the two most often sited types of training requested by younger workers.
PricewaterhouseCoopers suggests in their 2011 Global CEO Survey that for Millennials, training and development is the most highly valued employee benefit. In fact, three times the number of Millennials would choose more training and development over cash bonuses. The majority also agree that working with strong coaches and mentors is a crucial component of their career development.
Statistics Canada reports indicate that approximately 25% of the Canadian workforce is a Generation Y or Millennial worker. As these groups continue to grow, understanding how they learn and work will be crucial to maximizing their full potential in the workplace.
Training Tips for a Millennial Audience
Raised in the presence of the Internet, Millennials have a great ability to sort and digest information quickly and efficiently. As a result, customization of content is essential to capturing and maintaining their interest.
Millennials are most receptive to the following training approaches:
- Ongoing Training: Consider offering training in multiple and shorter sessions.
- Engaging Materials: Leverage new media, i.e. social media, video, audio, etc.
- Flexibility: Allow Millennials to attend training live, online, or via recorded podcast. This allows them to train at their convenience and when they are most receptive.
- Mobile Learning (m-learning): Investigate how your organization can offer training on demand through mobile devices.
- Teamwork: Develop team activities that are used during or after training to reinforce development and maximize learning outcomes.
Ultimately, training and development is an investment in your organization's future leaders. Becoming an organization with a strong learning and development plan will help to ensure you attract and retain motivated employees who are engaged in their jobs and your organization.