Stop wasting your development dollars (Guest Commentary)

Skills learned in T&D sessions often don't transfer to actual job
By Anne Dranitsaris
|Canadian HR Reporter|Last Updated: 02/22/2013

Every year, billions of dollars are spent on employee development, yet 62 per cent of businesses report they are without the skills they need to grow and succeed. It is estimated by the American Society for Training and Development that organizations in the United States spend nearly two-thirds (US$78.61 billion) of the total spend on the internal learning function, and the remainder (US$47.27 billion) is allocated to external services.

Despite employees attending training sessions in record numbers, these reports also indicate those billions do not always improve the workplace because the skills often do not transfer to the actual job. When staff members fail to apply what they were meant to learn, organizational leaders are frustrated by the obvious ineffectiveness of these costly training initiatives.

While leaders at organizations want to develop their people and are willing to invest in them, they are puzzled when employees don’t change behaviours following training. In addition, leaders and employees who want to develop are frustrated when they can’t use what they have learned during their training.