Employee training and development are integral parts of the HR function of management. Training implies a systematic procedure whereby employees are imparted technical knowledge and skill for specific jobs. It emphasizes improvements in the abilities of employees to handle specific jobs and operations more effectively. Development, on the other hand, implies an educational process aimed at the growth and maturity of managerial personnel in terms of insight, attitudes, adaptability, leadership, and human relations, on the basis of conceptual and theoretical knowledge.
Training and development programs are generally designed in accordance with the nature of the job, personnel concerned (operatives, supervisors, managers) and the purpose in view. The programs can be broadly divided into two categories: On-the-Job Programmes and Off-the-Job Programmes.
Training of operatives and skilled workers are mostly organized by way of (i) Training on specific jobs; (ii) Vestibule training with separate sets of tools and equipment in a special training center; (iii) Internship training with the cooperation of vocational training institutions; (iv) Apprenticeship training combining job experience with classroom instruction; and (v) Job rotation involving transfer from job to job on a systematic basis.
Supervisory and managerial training programs are mostly off-the-job programs. One or more such programs commonly used are the following: (i) Classroom lectures; (ii) Conferences; (iii) Group discussions; (iv) Case studies; (v) Role-playing; (vi) T-group training; and (vii) Programmed instruction.
Benefits of Training
The investments made in training benefit an organization in many ways more than one:
- Training helps to improve the quantity and quality of the workforce. It increases the knowledge and skills of employees and improves their performance.
- It helps to reduce the time and cost required to reach the acceptable level of performance. It prevents employees’ obsolescence. Accidents are also reduced.
- It enables the organization to fill manpower needs. Promising employees can be spotted and trained for higher-level jobs.
- Trained employees make better and more economic use of materials and equipment. Maintenance cost is reduced and the life of machines and equipment is increased.
- It helps to reduce the need for constant and close supervision of workers. It facilitates “management by exception”.
- It helps to give more job satisfaction and boosts the morale of the employees which results in the enhancement of their earnings, provides job security, and better career prospects.
- It facilitates delegation and decentralization of authority. Trained employees are willing to accept new and challenging assignments.
Benefits of Development
Similarly, the investment made in management development benefits the organization in the following ways:
- It prevents managerial obsolescence by exposing executives to the latest concepts and techniques in their respective fields of specialization.
- It ensures that the company is staffed with a sufficient number of managers who have the requisite knowledge and skills.
- It ensures the long-term survival and growth of the organization.
- It replaces old executives with younger ones, i.e., it develops a second line of competent officers for future replacement.
Management development programs may consist of (i) an in-basket program for identifying executive potentials and developing decision-making abilities; (ii) Management games to develop capabilities of decision-making in a competitive situation of a realistic nature; (iii) Sensitivity training aimed at developing awareness of and sensitivity to behavioral patterns of oneself and others; (iv) Committee assignments or membership of junior boards; (v) Simulation and role-playing, and (vi) Transactional analysis for improving communication abilities, human relations, and managerial interaction with subordinates.