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An undeniable return on investment

Many managers see training and a cost centre; a drain on their meagre budgets, and something to be ditched at the first sign of a downturn in fortunes. The more forward thinking managers see training as an opportunity to actively engage with staff and encourage them to take responsibility for and provide knowledge and skills to enhance their role in the team and organisation. Done effectively the return achieved by a single inspired member of staff can be 10 times the investment.

A member of TrainerBase reported to me the following scenario:

The training is an accredited First Line Manager programme for a Public Sector body. The programme is three, two day training sessions over three months. On the second day of the first session the concept of successful meeting was introduced. The revelation to the one of the participants was the cost of having a meeting.

As part of the assessment for accreditation; participants were required to document how they had implemented one or more learning element into the normal working procedures. The particular learner detailed how they had investigated the costs of a regular meeting held within their team along with the lack of outcomes and determined the annual cost to the organisation. The participant then proposed a change in meeting protocol. With the agreement of managers and staff the new protocol was adopted and made an immediate impact; both financial and in respect to getting things done.

The cost of the programme for 12 participants was in the region of £9,000 including accreditation. The estimated cost of each monthly meeting prior to the programme was £20,000 (actual costs and staff opportunity/attendance costs). As a result of the implementation of the new protocol; the cost of meetings was reduced to in the region of £8,000. That is an annual saving to the organisation of £144,000.

The lessons from this example are:

  • First Line Managers were encouraged to learn
  • Senior Managers were encouraged to support their Line Managers
  • The way things had always been done was costing the organisation thousands of pounds for no return

The above is just one example of the value of providing learning and development programmes. I have heard of many more. It is my view that many cash strapped organisation would do well to invest in enlightening and empowering their staff; as it is those staff that are likely to have the answer to the funding problems the organisation face.


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Peter Mayes

Peter Mayes.

Peter Mayes is the founder and editor of TrainerBase; dedicated to helping business and other organisations find trainers and trainers find business.

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Tel 07970 746077

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Contributor: Peter J Mayes

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