When I was younger, much younger, I worked for a summer clearing land for an airport expansion project.

It would be a major understatement to say I was inexperienced and untrained in the proper use of power saws.

Regardless, I forged ahead with the task at hand.

I didn’t know what I was doing, but that didn’t stop me. It also certainly didn’t help me. I should have been trained for workplace safety, equipment use, and (in my case, at least) for first aid. Productivity surely declined a bit while I sat in the hospital emergency room waiting to get my hand examined after I had a bit of an accident with the power saw. That – simply put – is the cost of inadequate training.

Proper training is just as important for those working on a land clearing project as it is for those working on a software development project or for the day-to-day interactions of office staff.

There are also tangible non-safety risks associated with not providing proper training, including:

  • Losing your competitive edge (when employees have outdated skills)
  • Increased turnover (usually of your best people)
  • Increased recruitment costs (to replace the great people that left)
  • Lower morale (people want to be lifelong learners, especially Millennials and Generation Z’s)
  • Falling behind of technological advancements
  • Failing to innovate (through lack of skillset and best employees)

Training should be considered as an investment rather than a cost. If training is planned well, it will lead to a rise in productivity and increased efficiency, which will positively affect profit, along with achieving sustainable growth for the organization. Inadequate training will eventually lead to decreased customer satisfaction in the people and products, and drive them to competitors who maintain highly skilled employees who can produce the goods and services they desire.

That famous quote from author, salesman, and motivational speaker Zig Ziglar, rings true because it is true: “The only thing worse than training people and having them leave, is not training them and having them stay.”

Ben Jodrey is a content strategist at Velsoft Training Materials.