4 min

How to develop quality staff

With training and development, not only can you ensure your employees have the knowledge and skills they need to do their jobs well, you can also give them the motivation to excel. “Human capital is a key concern for CEO’s globally. The options are to tap the global market, but many organizations have recognized that growing their own talent is the most important approach,” said Vincent Desmond, Chief Executive at the Chartered Quality Institute (CQI).

It’s not just about offering the odd training course or asking people to take online tests every year. For employees – and the company – to really benefit from training and development, it has to be well thought through, planned and done in collaboration. Only then can you make sure everyone gets the most out of it. Here we look at five ways to develop quality staff, helping boost business at the same time.

Perform a skills gap analysis

Do you want to develop leaders? Or specialists in marketing, customer service or quality management? What do your clients need, and where are the gaps? You might want to start with a skills audit: an assessment to identify the gap between the skills and knowledge each employee has and what they need. First take a look at the skills your employees need to do their job properly. These could be transferrable, like IT or management skills, or more specific to the role. Then look at the skills your employees have. What’s missing?

Identify training opportunities

Once you’ve identified the gaps, think about how they might be filled. Would a training course be beneficial, or perhaps coaching from a manager? Always keep your objective in mind. Investigate what’s available. If a Microsoft Excel course would give the employee the skills they need to produce more effective reports, find out what courses are out there. The best option could be a two-day advanced course, or a series of online webinars. If it’s more specialist training that’s needed, it’s a good idea to look at what the profession’s national and international institutions offer. “As with other professions, there is a massive shortage of quality management professionals,” said Desmond. “We provide professional recognition through Chartered Quality Professional status – providing an external qualification for individuals to aim for.”

Ask your employees what they want

Before you start booking courses and development programs, talk to your employees. Understanding what they want – from their jobs and their careers – will help you set out a path together that’s helpful for the company and also motivational and inspiring for the employee. Desmond concludes: “Professional development is a win-win. The individual feels valued and invested in by the organization and this in turn contributes to increased staff productivity, engagement and retention.”

Invest in training – Long-Term

If, after the gap analysis and talking to the employee, you conclude a training course is the best way forward, take the next step and invest in it. Then keep investing. Kiwa believes training is an ongoing process. People are the most important factor in achieving your business objectives. The certificate of persons also naturally complements the quality assurance of organizations and products. When performing a certification of persons, Kiwa first focuses on establishing the skills of a person and then it monitors those skills.

Put the skills to use

It’s easily done: attend a two-day course on “powerful communication” or the latest project management system, file your notes somewhere safe and completely forget 90% of what you learned. That’s disheartening for the employee, who probably left the course feeling inspired. But it’s also not giving the company a good return on investment. To avoid this, plan to follow up. Before the course starts, decide how best to put the employee’s new skills into action. Ask them to summarize what they learned for the rest of the team and then assign them tasks and responsibilities that are well suited to their new knowledge.