Employee Training Programs and How They Impact Your Business

8 Types Of Employee Training Programs And How It Impacts Your Business Goals

Workforce Management

What is Employee Training?

Employee training and development pertains to any activity or training program that teaches employees new knowledge or skills or improves upon existing knowledge required for organizational growth.

Employee training programs can vary depending on what is needed to close skill gaps in the workplace. These could range from technical training to vocational and management training.

One common misconception is that training programs are similar to learning and development (L&D) programs. Employee training is a short-term endeavor that is production-centric and aims to solve a particular problem. L&D, on the other hand, pertains to a multi-layered program with the aim of facilitating a larger employee development program within the organization.

For instance, learning how to use new accounting software is considered an employee training program. In contrast, learning accountancy to get new certifications or degrees will fall under the L&D program.

How Does A Business Benefit From Employee Training?

Employee skills are important in helping a company achieve its business goals. With that in mind, knowledge and skills need to be improved over time to keep up with the changing times.

Hosting regular employee training presents many benefits to the company. The major benefits include:

Increases Employee Retention

A company that invests in effective training programs and continuous learning has 30% to 50% higher retention rates than an organization that does not prioritize development programs.

Improves Employee Morale

Employees lose motivation and morale if there is a lack of opportunity for improvement and if they are unable to perform to what is expected of them.

Conducting employee training gives your workers the opportunity to sharpen their skills and gain new knowledge, thereby boosting their morale and increasing their job satisfaction.

Increases Employee Productivity

When employees lose motivation and morale, their productivity will likely suffer as well. An effective training program can improve their morale, which also leads to a boost in productivity.

Better Employee Performance

When the company introduces a new system or shifts to a different program, mistakes and errors are likely to occur, especially when your employees lack the knowledge or skill to efficiently use the tool.

A workplace training program is needed to make employees more proficient in using a new system or tool and reduce the chance of them committing mistakes on the job.

Address Employee Weaknesses

Conducting employee training sessions allows the company to distribute valuable training materials that could help employees strengthen the skills that each employee needs to improve.

Addressing employee weaknesses through training development programs creates a knowledgeable workforce that can work independently.


Different Types Of Employee Training Programs

  1. Orientation Training

Perhaps one of the most important types of training programs is orientation. Onboarding programs help new hires get acquainted with the company culture even before they join the company.

The HR staffers typically handle orientation programs and develop training materials related to, but not limited to:

  • Company values and vision
  • Company culture
  • Leadership team
  • Paperwork for new hires
  • Administrative procedures (logins, email setups)
  • Key policies
  • Information on safety procedures
  • Training on machines equipment
  • Job-specific technical training

Orientation training needs to cover the essential information that new hires need to get started. That being said, it is also important to ensure that this type of employee training should not become overwhelming. Too much information can discourage new employees.

  1. Compliance Training

All employees are required to go through compliance training, regardless of how long they’ve been in the company. During this type of workplace training, the learning objectives should be to educate employees on the laws and regulations applicable to their job function or industry.

Having an effective compliance training program in place helps prevent poor conduct in the workplace and ensures proper governance within the organization. Additionally, it lowers the chance of safety risks and provides employees with a healthier workplace environment.

There are plenty of examples of compliance training programs, including:

  • Anti-harassment – Anti-harassment training provides guidance and measures on preventing and responding to bullying, harassment, and sexual harassment in the workplace
  • Diversity – Diversity training educates employees on how to work with people of different ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, and mental or physical abilities
  • Information Security – Information Security Training focuses on preventing social hacking attacks and handling data outside of the work environment. This can include using strong passwords or being aware of internet scams
  • Business Ethics – Business ethics training programs teach employees how to assess risks, whistleblowing, accountability, and address conflicts of interests
  • Workplace safety – All workplaces have hazards, regardless of the industry. As such, it is important to conduct safety training to ensure all employees are aware of the different workplace hazards in their environment and how to prevent them
Also read: 6 Types of Common Hazards In The Workplace
  1. Technical Training

A technical training program focuses on teaching employees how to use the tools and technology they need to perform their tasks. For example, if a role requires the use of a printing device, then it should be covered in technical training.

The time it takes to complete technical training from start to finish can vary. Basic tools can be covered in a quick, one-time course while more complicated systems would likely require a more-involved training.

That being said, technical training is not always required. Some positions may require little to no knowledge of using company software.

As such, it is important not to impose technical training on employees who do not require it. For those who do, however, technical training programs should be revisited every year or when there is a major update to the tool.

  1. Product Training

Product training programs should cover all information about your company’s goods, products, or services. This type of training is typically given to sales representatives, customer service staffers, and the product team.

A product training program may cover different aspects and have varying learning objectives, depending on the employee set to undergo training. Including critical questions about the product can be beneficial to a sales staffer while value-adding can help your marketing team reach the right audience.

In addition to training employees, product training can also be designed for customers to teach them how to use the product and achieve great results. This process can also be called “product adoption.”

  1. Sales Training

Sales training is similar to product training. However, this type of employee training program focuses more on the selling points of your company’s products and services instead of the granular product details.

Effective sales training can teach your staffers how to effectively market and advocate for the product, navigate customer questions, and promote key features.

By the end of sales training, your employees should ideally be able to:

  • Identify opportunities for improvement in sales tactics using resources like recorded calls, online reviews, and customer service surveys
  • Identify and address your sales team’s weaknesses, such as people skills or conversion
  • Know how to prospect for potential clients and generate leads
  • Promote the brand image
  • Make good impressions on potential and existing customers

While sales training is more geared toward your sales and marketing staff, it can also be given to non-customer-facing employees to help them better understand the profiles of your target audience and their pain points.

  1. Soft-Skills Training

A soft-skills training program focuses on teaching or improving upon personal attributes, including communication skills, conflict resolution, and problem-solving.

Soft skills are crucial across the organization, regardless of the business unit and employee role. Having the right soft skills can help employees gain new clients, close sales, improve customer relationships, and build a stronger team dynamic.

According to the U.S. Department of Labor, companies have identified these soft skills as key to the success of young employees:

  • Networking
  • Enthusiasm
  • Professionalism
  • Communication Skills
  • Teamwork
  • Problem-Solving
  • Critical Thinking
  1. Team Training

Team training helps encourage healthy and beneficial team dynamics, which can open the way to professional growth opportunities. Team training, when done right, can also significantly boost employee morale, collective efficacy, and employee satisfaction.

When conducting team training, it is important to take time in determining what initiatives to implement through feedback. Additionally, it is also important to spend an ample amount of time preparing and developing training materials and a training plan.

  1. Leadership Training

Leadership training is not intended for just the members of your organization’s leadership team but can also be given to other employees. This type of training can refresh and reset the mindset of your existing leaders. On the other hand, it can help employees better understand their roles, what is expected of them, and what it takes to become exceptional leaders in the future.

Leadership training programs have plenty of benefits, including boosting employee morale, increasing employee retention rates, building better teams, and improving leadership styles.

How to Create An Effective Training Program

Effective employee training programs are one of the cornerstones of organizational success, making it even more essential to build a program that caters to the needs of your business and employees.

Here are some tips for you to create an engaging and effective training program.

  1. Assess your needs and develop goals based on your assessment

The first step in any employee training process is establishing your business or learning goals and developing training objectives to successfully achieve them.

When developing an employee training strategy, there are some questions you should consider, including:

  • Who is the intended audience of the training program?
  • What are your short-term goals?
  • What are your long-term goals?
  • What system will you implement to measure success?
  • How will you know if participants have learned and understood the training content?
  1. Determine the type of employee training method to use

Not all training programs can be conducted efficiently and effectively using a single method. Here are some ideas of the different types of employee training plans, courtesy of Workable:

  • Classroom style or workshop style
  • In-house seminars or industry conferences
  • Individual training or group training
  • Skills-based training or management training
  • On-the-job training or external resources training
  • Professional training or quality training
  • Online learning or in-person seminars
  • Structured training timeline or “Learn at your own pace”
  • Hands-on training
  • Instructor-led training
  1. Take into consideration the different learning styles of your employees.

Not all employees have the same learning styles. Where some learn faster through visuals, others may fare better if the training is given through audio recordings. That being said, not all training programs can be designed to adapt to different learning styles.

For instance, you can create audio recordings or speaking seminars for leadership training programs. However, audio recordings may not be effective if you’re aiming to teach your employees how to use a certain tool.

The best way to cater to your employee’s learning styles is by setting up a learning management system. A good system comes with several different learning modalities that allow you to address the various learning needs of your staff.

  1. Keep adult learning principles in mind.

Adults participating in planning trainings are often more experienced that young students, especially in an academic setting. As such, it is important to keep the characteristics of adult learners in mind, including:

  • Experience will always play a key role in any type of learning
  • Training programs should incorporate real-world applications
  • Adult learners are ready to learn as long as they find the content appealing
  • Adult learners should be involved in the process of planning employee training, whether it is in developing content or evaluating the program
  1. Develop learning objectives

Having learning objectives or outlines in place ensures that you are hitting all the important points of your seminars.

The outline should answer several key questions, such as:

  • What topics do you need to cover?
  • What is the most important information to disseminate?
  • How do you want the training program to begin?
  • How do you want the training program to end?

When you have established the outline and the learning objectives, it is time to get feedback from your colleagues, move sections around, and make revisions to finalize the training plan.

  1. Develop and design training materials.

A successful training program needs effective training materials. Training materials can include eLearning, training manuals, slide presentations, job aids, workbooks, and online materials.

  1. Collect feedback.

Once the training is done, do remember to evaluation your employees and ask them for feedback. It is best to do this right after the program so it is fresh on everyone’s minds.

Consider using online surveys or questionnaires to efficiently collate feedback from your employees. You can also consider asking for anonymous feedback to take the pressure off your employees.

  1. Measure the success of your training program.

Over the next months or quarter, measure whether the objectives of the training were met and whether there are tangible changes within your organization.