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5 Effective Ways to Reduce Employee Training Cost

Isidora Markovic
Isidora Markovic

It’s estimated to cost $1,252 annually to train an employee. The upfront cost of training your employees may seem daunting, but delivering training inadequately, or failing to deliver it at all, will sabotage your company’s trajectory to success long-term. 

What will happen if I don’t train my employees? 

Work Institute’s 2019 retention report found lack of growth and development opportunities to be the leading contributor to employee attrition.

Employee turnover is an upward trend - it has risen year on year for the last decade. By 2023, it’s estimated that more than one in three workers will voluntarily quit their jobs each year.

It’s estimated that it costs 33% of a churned employees salary to replace them. This means if an employee was earning $40,000, it would cost $13,200 to fill their role. This figure is 10 times higher than the average cost of annual training per employee.

High turnover also has detrimental effects that are “invisible” such as depressed team morale which gives rise to demotivated employees and lower organizational productivity.

Ultimately, given that 94% of employees would stay at a company longer if it invested in their career development, neglecting your peoples’ demand for knowledge makes you vulnerable to repercussions far greater and more insidious than the expense of employee training.

Direct and indirect employee training costs

There are two types of cost associated with employee training - direct and indirect. Direct costs include asset production, facilitating learning sessions, designing the material and renting out space or hiring equipment. Indirect training costs include time taken to train, food, lost productivity and transport.

Reducing the cost of employee training

Considering time is the main resource at play in employee training, reducing time (be that manager time or employee time) is the key to driving down training costs. 

According to the Association for Talent Development (ATD) the average time to create basic eLearning content is between 42-71 hours.

You can reduce time spent on training in a few ways:

  1. Opt for online training

  2. Choose the right training platform

  3. Leverage microlearning 

  4. Libraries and common screens

  5. Make onboarding scalable and repeatable

1. Opt for online training

An easy way to reduce training cost per employee is to opt for online training. The cost of online learning is one-third to one-fifth that of traditional instructor-led classroom style training.

This is because it eliminates a myriad of both direct and indirect costs - time, travel, accommodation, catering, room rental just to name a few. IBM saved $200 million by using technology-based learning. 

2. Choose the right training platform

Do plenty of research, read reviews and take note of a product’s ease of use rating. Some online training tools are clunkier, hard to navigate for content creators and less user friendly for learners. The latter has a negative domino effect - the less user friendly, the less engaged a learner. The less engaged a learner, the less productive they are. 

Others are much sleeker, designed with a modern workforce in mind. These training platforms use familiar app designs and popular features (e.g. swiping and scrolling) in a way that makes creating and consuming learning material feel second nature. They’re designed to be intuitive - so that no upskilling is required on anyone’s part in order to start. 

3. Leverage microlearning

Conventional employee training is a time drain. And the longer the training, the longer you are taking people away from work.

Microlearning is a learning mechanism whereby learning is delivered in small, 2-5 minute bite-sized chunks to appeal to modern learners’ technological expectations and attention spans. Not only is it built to appeal to modern workers, so surpasses conventional training methods in engaging them, but it takes a fraction of the time to complete.

With tools like eduMe, employees receive relevant information in short bursts when they need it, in a way that seamlessly fits into the ‘flow of work’ i.e. the rhythm of their working day.

4. Libraries and common screens

There will undoubtedly be instances where the same assets (image, videos or GIFs) can be used across multiple lessons. Reuse of assets maximizes their longevity, i.e. the amount you get from them. This is where content libraries come in - they enable easy access to any asset previously uploaded.

‘Common screens’ are screens common to every course, regardless of subject matter. E.g. a welcome screen, learning objectives, transition screens and so on. When these are included as part and parcel of every lesson, it saves you the hassle of manually adding them afresh every time. Even better if they are pre-populated with suggested copy to guide you. 

5. Make onboarding scalable and repeatable

Onboarding takes up a significant amount of time, but it doesn’t have to. Of all the training you need to provide, onboarding is likely to be the same for everyone, every time (excluding a specialized few).

This ‘sameness’ signals an opportunity - the opportunity to create a scalable, repeatable onboarding process. When you turn onboarding into something pre-made that can be sent out to all new starters at the click of a button, you wave goodbye to time-intensive induction days laboriously carried out by the HR department. 

As well as cutting time and cost, this ensures onboarding is a uniform experience. One employee isn’t receiving a better quality of training than the other. You weed out inconsistencies from the process and can feel confident everyone is onboarded to the highest possible standard - one that you determine.  

When time = money, it becomes a business imperative to find more efficient ways to deliver ongoing training to larger numbers of people, and double down on cost in the process.

With eduMe, you can onboard, continuously train and engage your people in a fraction of the time, while maximizing quality and repeatability of these vital processes in employee training.

Are you ready to engage your workforce with powerful mobile learning that they can access whenever they need to, wherever they are? 👇