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Employee Development

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Employee development is one of the most important aspects of running a successful business. While it may not be the first thing in which you invest, it will show one of the highest rates of return on investment as you implement measures to contribute to employee development. Determining what methods you use and how you assess their efficacy can be daunting, but there are companies, software, and consultants that can all help you do just that.

From the perspective of an employee, investment in employee development is one of the things that determines a desirable employer or company. When an employee feels that you are investing in him or her as an individual, that engenders loyalty, positive morale, and ultimately better performance. While some employees will ultimately move on to other positions with other companies, they will still give you their best while they are with you. And those who stay with you will perform better at every level to which they rise.

One of the most popular ways that larger companies can contribute to employee development is by subsidizing classes that employees take at local educational institutions. Sometimes an employer will subsidize an entire degree, assuming that the skills and value of the employee will increase dramatically both from the coursework and the degree itself. Given the significance of this investment, employees may be asked to sign something saying that they plan to stay with the company for some number of years after earning the degree.

Employee Training for Legal Protection
Employee development can also be used to protect your company. In our rather litigious society, people are often looking for a way to make a buck off your company, so it is important to be able to prove not only that you have checked into the background of an employee, but that you have also trained him adequately once he began working for you. Safety issues can be a part of this, as well as seminars regarding sexual harassment, diversity or sensitivity.

There are several different ways to administer the training that makes up a large part of employee development. You may choose to go with some sort of online training and testing. This can save you time and money, especially when employees may be empowered to read a manual or watch video training materials online and take a simple test that can be scored in seconds by the computer.

Sometimes it is still essential to train employees on-site because they need to be mentored on pieces of precision machinery. Or perhaps what is most important is that they develop a fluid manner of dealing with clients and customers. Then you have to figure out the most cost efficient way of training employees, whether that is ultimately in groups or "classes" of new hires, or by having an employee shadow someone who doesn't take too much time off from his normal tasks to train the employee.

Helping Employees Build Teams and Communicate Effectively
Still other times, it's great to get employees off-site for development. Fun and exciting seminars in team building and communication can be found taught by certified experts all over the country. Whether your team is the sort that would embrace the idea of a strategic and interactive ropes course or one that would do better spending a thoughtful but enjoyable afternoon taking the Meyers-Briggs test and talking about the results, there are ways to get people cooperating and communicating that can have lasting benefits on your work environment.

Another important part of employee development is the performance assessment procedure you choose. 360 degree evaluations have rapidly become the most popular method of assessment, and include self assessments as well as feedback from supervisors and co-workers. Turning the review process into something primarily positive and focused on self-knowledge and growth is important. You can find a number of software products which facilitate the administration of these evaluations, saving your HRdepartment quite a bit of time.

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