Equipping your business with the right employee development tools
If you read our previous blog post you already know why having an employee development framework sets you on track to close capability gaps and power up your workforce. In this blog we’re going to explore how employee development tools are an essential support that will help you get the most out of your learning and development (L&D) strategies.
The risks of not using an employee development tool
Most organisations have recognised the need to invest in L&D and many have implemented employee coaching and training programs. However, organisations often find that they’re not getting the results that they’re looking for. Perhaps the program started with a bang … only to fizzle out leaving individual employee plans sitting neglected. Or perhaps there’s just not enough visibility over the program to know where interventions need to be made or where the successes are happening.
Without the right tool, your employee development strategy is at risk.
Limited visibility and tracking
A major risk of not using the right employee development tool for your business is the lack of visibility of progress. Without a good platform it can be challenging to track development goals and monitor employees’ growth and capability improvements. This results in employees not being recognised when their performance improves and missed opportunities to close a capability gap with the right coaching and training.
Poor employee engagement and retention
An L&D strategy that is left to stagnate can lead to lower levels of engagement and higher attrition. People are increasingly expecting employers to provide opportunities for professional development and employee training tools to help meet specific career goals. Neglect this and you’re at risk of employees starting to look elsewhere for new opportunities.
On the other hand, if you are implementing an L&D development strategy but not using a user-friendly platform, your employees might not feel engaged with the training and learning experience – or may even feel undervalued.
Compliance reporting risks
In highly regulated industries compliance and conduct risk are critical operational elements. A lack of documentation and tracking related to training for compliance purposes can leave an organisation exposed to a range of regulatory risks.
Without a user-friendly online tool, you can end up using a range of different automated and manual processes, documents, templates and filing systems, all of which can get in the way of your organisation achieving its development goals while soaking up time and resources.
7 reasons to use an employee development tool
Effective strategies use employee training tools to encourage a culture of continuous coaching, learning and development. The best employee training tools can support employees and facilitate workplace coaching while simplifying processes and giving leaders valuable oversight on performance uplifts.
Let’s unpack some of the specific ways the right tools can support your business.
- Simplify coaching and support your people
If you’ve set up a program centred on one-to-one coaching from a manager or team leader to an employee, congratulations! (The best employee training incorporates on-the-job coaching to provide real-world context and opportunity to grow.) Employee development programs that use coaching are proven to be effective at changing the on-the-job behaviours that lift performance. Using a tool to support coaching and increase visibility can simplify the process for your coaches and their teams, meaning that they’re more likely to actually participate in coaching.
- Reach performance goals faster
It is easy to get caught up in the day-to-day processes – team members are working to meet targets and team leaders are probably managing several people. It’s far too easy for employee training and coaching to drop off the ‘to-do’ list when we’re swamped by deadlines and other priorities. You can make sure that employee training and coaching stays a priority for your people by using a tool that sends reminders, supports people and embeds continuous learning into the day to day.
- Help team leaders track and observe the performance of their teams
To change the outputs, you need to change the inputs. This means that team leaders need to understand what their teams are doing and how they’re progressing towards their goals. Give your leaders management systems that make it easier to track progress and observe their people.
- Provide your HR and L&D teams with visibility over where capability is lifting
If your business is investing in training courses and employee coaching, it makes sense to understand how the programs are tracking. Are you seeing the corresponding results and lifts in capability? Using a tool that provides visibility over tracking of performance goals can help you see where the impacts are – and highlight areas that need attention.
- Make reporting easier
Sick of wrangling data and working with too many spreadsheets? Tools with dashboards and one-click real-time reports mean leadership teams have powerful visibility where it matters – including over compliance risks and compliance training remediations.
- Support flexible work arrangements
The right tools can reassure leadership that teams are still tracking and prioritising performance development goals in hybrid work environments.
- Give people power over their own goals
Empower your staff by giving people oversight of their own goals and performance. User-friendly platforms can engage employees in the coaching and learning process and ownership of goals improves learner engagement.
Get your employee development on track
What employee development tools should you use?
Tools include the templates and plans that support your L&D programs. Your organisation is probably already using templates and metrics focused on annual reviews, including:
- performance review templates (e.g., balanced scorecards and KPI matrices)
- career path maps
- development plans.
The best employee training strategies recognise that on-the-job coaching ensures that new skills are not just learned but are practised and mastered in the workplace. This means that employee coaching requires a different approach, including:
- employee training skills assessment templates
- goal-setting workflows
- reminders and notifications
- systems to track progress and record coaching notes, observations and feedback.
One-on-one coaching conversations with direct reports are an important responsibility that can provide lifts you won’t see if your business focuses only on formal employee training programs and corporate training. Passing on skills and insights through a culture of workplace coaching requires tools that can:
- easily document and review conversations between team leaders and their people
- note and track behavioural goals
- ensure coaching becomes a habit.
Provide leadership with the reports they need
Reporting functionality can help leadership understand how team members are tracking and if organisational employee training, coaching and performance programs are working.
Industries in highly regulated sectors may also need management systems that aid compliance management, such as conduct risk audit workflows. Ensure that you are investing in software that enables you to easily generate the reports that your business needs.
Ready to get on track with the Yak?
What should you consider when choosing employee development tools?
Choosing the right employee training and development tools is a critical decision. When evaluating platforms, we recommend that you prioritise employee training tools that support on-the-job employee coaching, which is critical to workplace learning and improving performance. Then start by assessing your organisation’s specific needs, considering factors like workforce size, employee training and coaching objectives, growth goals and compliance requirements.
Look for employee training and development tools that offer scalability, customisation options and user-friendly interfaces that meet the needs of your workplace. Also consider how the tool will integrate with your existing systems.
Reporting capabilities will help you measure the effectiveness of your employee training and coaching programs, so ensure that you invest in a platform with dashboards that are easy to use and reports that are easy to access.
Make sure you invest in a solution that aligns with your business needs and will be used. Consider the following factors:
- UI and usability: Will staff use it? Is it easy to understand and use? Does it have good tech support?
- Flexibility: Can it incorporate your organisational templates without too much (or any) bespoke development? Can it be used on phones and desktops? Can different teams easily use it?
- Reporting and analytics: Are the reports it generates easy to produce and understand? Do they display the metrics your team and leadership are looking for?
- Integrations: Can you integrate other tools?
- Implementation: Is it fit for purpose or customisable for your needs?
- Investment: Is it timely and cost effective? Many systems simply take too long to customise and cost too much to maintain to make the numbers stack up.
Get the most out of the investment by using the right employee development tools to help your program – and your people – stay on course.
Power your people and development with YakTrak
YakTrak is easy for organisations to embed and sustain, and makes it simple for team leaders and team members to get the most out of employee training and coaching programs. YakTrak:
- supports learning and training where it happens most – on the job
- maximises performance while minimising conduct risk
- brings all development activity, forms and documentation into the one place
- engages employees in their training and development
- fosters a collaborative approach to training and output
- provides powerful visibility – see employee training, development and coaching goals on one dashboard.
Selecting appropriate employee training tools to support your business can be tricky. Get in touch with us to find out how to easily get on track with YakTrak.