We’ve covered the different ways technology is affecting business in previous articles. Not too long ago, we discussed the 5 types of technology that your business should be using. The possibilities are endless, especially with new business solutions, the accessibility of cloud computing, and advanced technologies like Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Augmented Reality (AR) becoming more useful to business users.
Of course, technology can do more than affect your business processes. It can also be used to help the business achieve its most optimum growth rate, particularly by helping employees and team members grow alongside the business. After all, that’s how you maintain a sustainable growth in today’s competitive market.
So, how can technology help with your employee development? There are several ways technology can be incredibly useful, and we are going to review them in this article.
Better Employee Analytics
The use of business solutions, especially solutions running in the cloud, means you are already gaining a lot of data from your employees. The only thing missing is the process of converting data into useful insights that you can use to boost productivity and promote better employee development.
Data analysis is now easy to integrate with the rest of your business solutions. Most cloud ecosystems already have built-in data analysis tools, ready to be used. Third-party solutions like Salesforce allow for even deeper analysis of employee activities in a specific department.
By identifying bottlenecks and issues with employees, you can also recommend the right training programs and skills to master. This leads to the entire team gaining from the employee development program, and that leads to your business growing more sustainably.
Speaking of recommending training programs, persuading employees to expand their skills is also becoming easier – and more beneficial in terms of value – now that there are online courses and training programs to take.
Since employees don’t have to leave their post to improve their skills, you can have a more comprehensive employee training program. More importantly, you can have a tailored training roadmap for every employee based on their roles, their preferences, and other metrics.
There are hundreds of short courses and certifications to take on websites like Udemy. There are also training programs designed for corporate users. Usually, these corporate programs are tailored for a larger audience group and cooperative learning.
Employee training doesn’t just stop with short courses either. With top universities like Michigan Tech opening their master’s programs to more students as online courses, team members can pursue a business administration or electrical engineering degree online. In fact, they can earn a master’s degree in virtually any field from the comfort of the office.
Online degrees are designed to be extremely flexible. Students can choose to study in their own time and even complete the degree at a pace they are comfortable with the most. You can encourage employees to pursue a higher degree further by allocating one or two hours a week for studying as well as by providing financial incentives.
Another reason as to why online degrees are so popular today, is their affordability. Compared to the equivalent offline degree, online degrees tend to be around 40% more affordable. This alone makes the return on investment for an online master’s degree relatively high.
Evergreen Digital Content
Having a repository of knowledge and content, from which employees can find answers to their work-related questions, is another way to boost employee development. At the same time, you are also minimizing the risk of small mistakes harming business operations, all while boosting employee productivity.
Developing a digital content repository can be seen as an investment worth making for its long-term benefits. The repository can be updated easily and new team members can be effective much sooner thanks to a comprehensive bank of knowledge.
Digital content is also easier to store and maintain. The content you store in digital formats is searchable. Whenever employees need a specific piece of information or new learning materials, they can use a search tool to get to the information that they want.
Last but certainly not least, we have the benefit that technology brings to employee branding. As one of the essential people development programs, employee branding is incredibly valuable. Employees who are proud of the brand they represent are more likely to promote the brand (and your business) to a bigger audience.
Employee branding is also a holistic exercise that a lot of businesses still take lightly. The process of integrating an effective employee branding strategy to the employee development workflow is a great way to help employees use their soft skills, including communications skills, social media skills, and many others.
At the end of that process, you will have a digital presence of employees supporting the digital presence of your company. The next time potential customers do a Google Search for your products, they will also see posts and content from employees. At that point, the benefits of good employee development get amplified to a whole new level.
These benefits are made possible by technology used as part of a good employee development program. Activities like digital learning and knowledge management are easier to execute when they are done digitally. Balancing between employee development and productivity is also no longer a challenge; you can see how some development programs actually boost productivity thanks to technology.
The only real challenge is getting started, and there is a simple solution to that challenge: make the first step. It is much easier to move forward once you are past that first development activity. You also have the ability to learn from existing development programs and to refine them further (and in a gradual way) as you go along.
To end this article, it is worth noting how a good employee development program makes growing your team and attracting the best talents easy. When top talents see how much you care about your existing team members, they are more likely to join the company when new positions open up. With sustainable growth as the primary objective, a strong talent pool is exactly what you want.