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After recently announcing a dynamic new online training program for our Association’s members, I was struck by the response from some of these members who could not see the importance to their business in offering more training options for their employees. Their concern was not about the price which at $349/year/user was the most cost-effective offering they would see in the marketplace. Nor was it about the product itself, as the program boasts over 700 courses, designed primarily for manufacturing companies and focused on a blend of technical skills and soft skills.

No, the issue was much more basic than that. They asked, why have more training?

Not expecting that response, I started to investigate the current state of learning and development today and found some eye-opening answers for this question.

  • 94% of employees say they would stay at a company longer if it invested in their learning and development, according to LinkedIn Learning;
  • 76% of your employees are looking for career growth opportunities and investments in training keeps them motivated and inspired to work harder and be better at their job;
  • 40% of employees leave their job within the first year unless they receive training and education from their employer;
  • 74% of employees feel they are not reaching their full potential unless they receive training from their employer; and,
  • 87% of Millennials state that having access to professional development and education is very important to their decision of whether to stay or seek other employment elsewhere.

These statistics should jump out at food industry business leaders who are doing their best to deal with the retirement of the baby-boomer generation while still growing the business. In short, whether your company is a supplier to the industry or a food manufacturer, your employees and your prospective employees clearly want to learn more to advance their career. Either you will provide that, or they’ll go to a company that does.

Is that ‘why’ enough for you?

If not, another perspective might help. Research shows that companies that take a proactive role in learning and development for their employees are more successful.

  • Companies that offer training have a 218% higher income per employee than companies without formalized training; and, they have a 24% higher profit margin;
  • Companies that invest in the next generation of leaders see impressive returns with those companies being 2.4 times more likely to hit their performance targets according to McKinsey;

These results are born out by other studies looking at business trends which further support expanding your training strategy.

  • 79% of CEO’s worldwide are concerned that a lack of essential skills in their workforce is threatening the future growth of their company, according to a 2019 PwC survey;
  • 53% of executives said that between half and all of their workforce would need to change their skills over the next three years, according to a 2019 poll conducted by Deloitte;
  • LinkedIn Learning also reports that 57% of learning and development professionals report spending more on online learning, while 38% report spending less on instructor-led training

Additionally, in recent polls from LinkedIn Learning, only 1% of learning & development professionals agreed with the statement that if skills gaps are not closed, there would be no negative impact. In fact, they believe quite the opposite with these same respondents saying that if the skills gap isn’t closed in the next 3-5 years, it will negatively impact:

  1. Future growth
  2. Customer experience and satisfaction
  3. Product or service quality
  4. Ability to innovate

In short, your employees want additional training; your company will be more successful if you implement relevant training programs that align with your business strategy; and given the pace of innovation in the world, you’ll be left behind if you don’t prioritize training.

I’d say that’s a good enough ‘why’ to develop training programs for your company, no?

Beginning in January of 2021, the Food Processing Suppliers Association (FPSA) is launching the 180 Skills online training program. At $349/year, users will have their pick of 700+ courses covering a wide variety of skills including Safety, Communications, Lean Manufacturing, Quality, Six Sigma, Automation, Electrical, Fasteners, Hydraulics, Pneumatics, Robotics, Welding, Customer Service, Team Building, Time Management, and Conflict Management, among many others.

If you are interested in learning more about this training program and why you should consider taking advantage of it at your company, FPSA is holding a webinar on Wednesday, September 23rd at 2pm ET. Register today for this free webinar where 180 Skills and staff will go into greater detail on this opportunity.

The 180 Skills program is a member’s-only benefit for corporate members of FPSA. Not a member? You can review the many benefits online which will more than pay for your membership dues, whether you are a supplier or a food manufacturer. Want more information? Contact me at any time.

Andy Drennan, FPSA Senior Vice President