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Training Isn't a Priority for Employees, But It Should Be

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|Aug 7|magazine8 min read

Despite worries about career progression and longevity of skills, employees are failing to prioritise training to address their worries. Research by Firebrand Talent shows that almost half of employees cite a lack of career progression (49 percent) and long term/broad appeal of their skills (47 percent) as employment concerns.

Despite concerns about career progression and the long term/broad appeal of their skills, 10 percent of respondents don’t actively partake in any skill and training/knowledge development whatsoever. Forty-five percent of people participate in the majority of their training at work and only 45 percent undertake training in their spare time.

Simon Lusty, managing director, Firebrand Talent said: “There is a disconnect between what people worry about and what they are willing to do about it. Many respondents bemoaned the lack of training budget available but don’t appear to be investing in their own self-improvement, nor are they prioritising training when they look for a new position.”

Less than a quarter of businesses provided financial support for academic and professional qualifications (23 percent). Where training was provided the most common provision was in-house training (51 percent) followed by paid-for conferences and events (41 percent).

When asked to identify the biggest obstacle to their career, only 10 percent said it was lack of training. The biggest obstacle was a lack of internal opportunities (32 percent). Ongoing training was also consistently ranked as the least important factor when looking for a new role. Only 2 percent of respondents rated it as their top priority.

When looking for a new role, job-seekers’ main considerations in order of priority were:

  1. fair and rewarding salary package,
  2. interesting and varied workload,
  3. career progression opportunities,
  4. flexible working environment,
  5. cultural fit and
  6. ongoing training.

Despite ranking training as a low priority, many respondents were unhappy with the level of training they receive through their current employer. More than half (51 percent) of respondents claimed they received very little or no training in their role and only 19 percent felt they receive sufficient training. A quarter of respondents (25 percent) stated that their company doesn’t provide any training budget whatsoever, and a further 31 percent saying they have budget but it is difficult to secure.

Lusty said: “While training isn’t a priority when job searching, it clearly becomes one once in a role. Access to training is an important consideration for Australian businesses.

“It is vitally important to invest in your people and in order to retain employees businesses should actively assess increasing the availability of training. With the increasing availability of MOOCs and distance learning it is easier than ever to keep skills and knowledge up to date, so there is no excuse for businesses or individuals not to invest in continual development.”


About Firebrand Talent: 
Firebrand Talent, a division of Aquent, is an award-winning Australian recruitment agency specialising in permanent recruitment for the digital, marketing and creative industries. We exist to place talented professionals in permanent jobs they love, and to help companies find, attract and retain the most outstanding talent in the marketplace.