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By now, many employers know that employee development matters to employees.

The research backs it up. In a 2016 Deloitte survey of millennials, 63% said their leadership skills were not being fully developed, and 71% of employees likely to leave in the next two years are dissatisfied with how their leadership skills are being developed. 

These numbers alone show that failing to invest in employee development can greatly hurt a company- but sometimes it can be hard to get buy-in to allocate time and money in robust employee development programs. Here are 5 ways that employee development can benefit your organization, now and in the future.

5 Reasons to Invest in Employee Development

1. It helps attract great employees.

In the modern workplace, employees are looking for more than a transactional relationship where they go to work, perform tasks, and leave. They want to feel as though they are more than just a labor resource for a company. When a job seeker sees that a company invests in employee development, they know that the company will value them and want to see them grow professionally and personally. Plus, job seekers that have a desire to be developed as employees are good candidates because they are showing that they want to grow their skills, and in turn, help the company grow.

2. It keeps employees engaged.

Gallup reports that 7 out of 10 U.S. employees report feeling unengaged. Unengaged employees are less productive and are prone to burn out more quickly. Furthermore, unengaged employees do not feel a sense of connection or loyalty to their workplace and are more likely to leave. Investing in employee development creates opportunities for employees to feel excited about learning and growing, and it also creates opportunities for employees to form greater connections with one another.

3. It is an investment that pays off in the long run.

It is true that investing in employee development costs money. Companies may be hesitant to make that investment, as the returns on employee development are not always instantaneous. That being said, providing pathways for employee development pays off greatly in the long run. The most noticeable return is increased employee retention. LinkedIn’s 2018 Workforce Learning Report states that 93% of employees would stay at a company longer if it invested in their careers, and a study by Employee Benefits News states that the average cost of losing an employee is a staggering 33% of their annual salary. Even one employee sticking around because the company provides employee development creates a significant payoff. Imagine how much the payoff is if a majority of the workforce stays with the company over the course of years. 

4. It creates promotable employees and strengthens the internal talent pipeline.

Beyond simply keeping employees at the company, investing in employee development creates a clear path for employees to have upward mobility. Building a robust internal talent pipeline, as opposed to always looking outside the organization to hire more senior level employees, provides many benefits as the employees know the ins-and-outs of the company and already have a sense of loyalty. 

5. It helps your organization be future-ready. 

As we grapple with the effects of COVID-19, it is becoming apparent that there are many workplace practices that are outdated and will simply not be effective as we move into the “new normal”. What we thought we knew about how employees can and like to work is changing. And this time is showing us the massive importance of employee adaptability. Investing in employee development is more than just upskilling employees with technical skills. A focus on skills like effective communication, adaptability, and more helps to prime employees for whatever changes come their way. 

It is easy to get caught up in performing and managing the day-to-day operations of a business, but it is imperative that employee development is not overlooked, as it produces many benefits.

If your organization is interested in learning more about how Verb can help train their leaders in both professional and personal skills schedule a demo below!

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