Some Organizations And Individuals Are Reluctant To Invest In Training Management Essay
Training and development is said to be beneficial for both firms and employees .why then are some organizations and individuals reluctant to invest in training?
There are various components of the human resource management systems utilized by organizations to cater for employee developmental initiatives. Training and development ranks amongst these components and it directly affects employee’s ability to contribute positively to the organization’s strategic objectives. Despite the relative benefits to organizations, there is an unwillingness to allot financial resources into it from both an employer and an employee’s perspective. This essay strives to critically examine the concept of training and development in organizations and the factors that restricts investment in this initiative. This will be achieved by examining the concept of training and development, how employees and employers can benefit from it, the reasons why employers are reluctant to invest in their employees and the individuals themselves not encouraged to investing in learning activities for self development.
Training is a key factor for genuine progression in an organization. It encourages development of skills most especially in new areas (Taylor 1983). It is a recognized task on the personnel development programme that is used to imbibe the right technical knowledge, attitude, capabilities and experience in individuals. In the evolving modern world where technology changes, the need for training has been recognized so as to keep in touch with the ever changing business environment. Every organization must have an organized training program otherwise employees will learn by other alternative means which might be threat to the organization.
Adopting training and development measures can improve an organization’s performance and increase the profit of the firm (Torrington and Hall 1998).They further discussed on some concepts which are used in assessing the new business environment, creating a strong criteria which planning and implementation strategy is used to determine if the expenses incurred provide an evident return or not.
Training and development is seen as an extremely important way of regaining or keeping in existent an international competitive advantage within its industry, both on the micro level by which production of goods and services and innovation are to be handled by a well efficient and qualified workforce and at the macro level by assisting the progression of the work force to new industries (Fonda and Hayes 1989). Some countries such as USA and France had a high poor skills level in the past which had a negative effect on their productivity level. This has shown that training and development has a direct or indirect impact on the economy as a whole weather negative or positive.
As earlier discussed, training and development is beneficial to both the organization and its employees. For employees, it prepares them for jobs in the future by increasing their skills level making them more qualified to assume greater job responsibilities. Having this advantage, they are able to facilitate the negotiation of improved pay and status, reducing the prospects of unemployment and increasing job opportunities. Redman and Wilkinson (2009) speaks on human capital theory which describes training as a self investment to an individual which will result to an increase in income, employment prospects and increased carrier opportunities. He further went on to explain that training also benefits the individuals in a collective manner, increasing professional levels distinguishing them from their counterparts.
Those who participate in sponsored training are more likely to see themselves with higher career prospects but mostly, indicate to the organisation that they intend to have a longer relationship with the employer than those who don’t enrol. Within the firm, it enhances performance and competitiveness thereby preventing shortages in skilled workforce, so that the firm does not have to outsource their work when jobs can be done internally by a highly capable skilled workforce (Lynch 1994). It is used to increase job motivation under a good working condition.
Training improves the quality of the work force in that organization, making them more flexible and innovative in their skills. This brings about multi skilling and it is only possible when the workforce is well trained. It also reduces supervision cost, when employees are able to work efficiently without being monitored. This improves employee motivation and empowerment (Sisson and Storey 2000)
Training also helps the organization to adapt to the ever changing business environment with strong training systems and culture finds it easier to implement each program in the ever evolving business economy (Redman and Wilkinson 2009).Most organizations have realized that the success of the firm lies in the skills and abilities of their employees this has been evident in organizations for a long time but has not been proven that skilled workforce are the most important resource in an organization. Even with the degree of awareness of the importance of training and development, some organizations still fail to make this a priority (marrow 2001).
Although organizations that engage in training are at an advantage, it is extremely difficult to link it to its performance and resultant profit. It may be seen as a complex investment decision because the possible benefit can be projected but might not be achieved (Rowe 1996). It is expensive and requires expertise, most employers are not encouraged because the benefits are not immediately tangible (Morrow 2001). Training and Development is inconsistent in the sense that long term payback have to be measured against short term strategic needs and resources. Training and development allows and helps the effective production of quality goods and services to take place but minimize cost effectiveness.
An organizations main goal is to maximize profit with the lowest cost involved. Sometimes, outsourcing employment contracts may be more reasonable in terms of cost due to the fact that training takes a longer time and expenses involved are cumbersome. Most organizations look for a short term result that is less time consuming and costly, besides training is only necessary for employees who are ready to adapt to the organizations culture and any form of change in the business environment (Taylor 1983). Training is used in different ways to ensure that the skills of the company are in line with the skills needed to achieve the organizations goals and objectives.
As a result of the size of organizations, willingness to train employees is dependent on available resources (Lynch 1993). It was suggested by Westhead and Storey (1997) that employees working in small organizations are less likely to receive training than their counterparts in a much larger organizations. They both offered two probable explanations to account for this occurrence. One of which is ignorance. Management in small organization is not well informed on the usefulness of training and development. They also discussed the effect of market forces and willingness of management to invest in training because of the sensitive issue of expenses incurred in training becoming greater than its resulting benefits to the organization’s bottom line.
These contrasting debates have important policy implications. If ignorance is said to be the main reason for insufficient training, then either organizations/managers are poorly informed of the training programs or have not been marketed with enough dynamism in this position. Government interference would be defensible in the form of minimum training requirements or direct training subsidies for organizations. On the other hand if market forces are found to be greater, government intervention might prove to be in vain (Westhead and Storey 1997).
However, some organizations do not see training as a major priority and are reluctant to invest due to a number of reasons. There seems to be a mismatch in the ratios of supply of services and the demand of labor. Organizations wouldn’t see a need to invest or train their work force if the demand for their goods and services are low (Taylor 1983).
Employee turnover is a major reason why organizations are reluctant to invest. When turnover is high, general and specific training investments will reduce. Even if employee turnover is low, organizations may be reluctant to invest in general training if other organizations can outsource workers before the organizations have recovered its expenses. Poaching employees is a substitute to training and development. Most organizations fear that employees will be lured by other competitors who will benefit from the training impacted in these employees. The competitors deliberately offer a higher pay and better carrier opportunity for the individual. This is known as Prisoner’s Dilemma, this is due to that fact that companies in the United Kingdom fail to invest in employee training and development (Sisson and Storey 2000). The prisoners’ dilemma is an important notion but exists due to the incompetence of the to retain its key employees. This negative practice results in the firm’s willingness to make significant training investment to improve employee productivity (Lynch 1993).
Some of the basic business activities undertaken in an organization do not require training, meaning that no skills or qualification of any kind is needed in getting the work done (Taylor 1983) .Some organizations don’t see it as necessary as long as the company survives on low cost/low value activities. Due to competitive pressures from the outside market, organizations are likely to cut back on their training needs to save money (Taylor 1983).
Sometimes training and development does not occur in some organisations because some manager’s aims goals and objectives are not related to the development of their staff, their major aim is to increase the firm’s profitability or ensure its growth. Where there is a variation in the manager’s goals and training and development goals, the appraisal system will not favour the training and development goals.
Due to the evolving technological advancement globally, organizations have started investing more on equipment and less on human labor, increasing cost security and a faster method making work done more efficiently (maiden 2010). An example of this is the supermarkets in the United Kingdom such as ASDA, provided self service machines to costumers that prefer speedy service. This is provided to decrease congestion and reducing human labor cost making the work faster and efficient in the long run. It can also be seen as a long term investment and advantage for them.
Training is just one aspect of an organization’s initiative to support other business activities. It is mostly beneficial to companies that want to focus on quality and not cost (keep and Mayhew 1999). He further argued that there is no need to invest in training and development when they are not needed to work. The majority of businesses in the UK still focus on cost with most jobs responsibilities not necessarily needing use skilled labour. Taylor (1911), view men as machines in the sense that some jobs do not require any level of skill and all that is needed is their complete hands, and not their hands and brain.
Government incentives might motivate organizations to hire semiskilled individuals and provide them with the training necessary to achieve required job performance (Finegold and Soskica 1988).This seems more reliable and organizations are obligated to adhere to the regulations guiding organizations from benefiting from these incentives.
On the other hand, the voluntary approach to training in organizations as employed in Britain is expected to create competitive advantage for organizations that are willing to invest in training to reap resultant improved productivity. This voluntary approach is expected to provide training in a more effective and efficient manner but surprisingly offers a lower quality of training than their other competitors on the continent (Finegold and Soskica 1988). A greater percentage of jobs in the UK are in the service sector and are dominated by low skilled, low paid jobs that are designed to be strongly controlled.
Seeing that Britain companies operate a voluntary approach, organisations are naturally financially competitive and they usually place a higher level of importance to return on shareholders’ investment and profits available. With the evolving global business environment, there has been an increasing unwillingness to invest in training related activities, especially as it is voluntary to organisations.
Most individuals realize the benefits of being multi skilled and qualified but fail to invest due to varying reasons. Employees might be at a disadvantage if they are seen as being over qualified or overskilled .They may be seen as a threat to co-workers and superior’s .This would also reduce their chances of elevation in their organization. Not all qualifications bring about high returns to the individuals as being qualified does not guarantee job security (Madine 2010).
In organizations, some individuals are interested in training and development to improve their skills and job opportunities but simply can’t afford to do so, leaving them to be highly dependable on their employees to train them. Most times individuals would be reluctant to invest with their income when the organization can afford to do so (Madine 2010).
There might also be a loss of professional identity when they are multi trained. Most individuals think of gender segmentation where training favors a gender more than the other. In this case men seems to be favored than women because, men are usually taken more seriously than women in most organizations (Wilson 2010).
In conclusion, training and development has been examined in this essay and its benefits to organizations. The need to tailor training activities to fit pre-identified training needs in organizations cannot be overemphasized. Organizational objectives should also be considered in the investment in training so as to ensure that its activities are inculcated in all training efforts.
As the overall objective is to maximize return on investment, budget allocation for employee development should be focused primarily on boosting skill levels of employees, while ensuring that subsequent training doesn’t lead to increased staff turnover rates.