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Letter from the President - November 2016

TRAINING (AGAIN?)

This month’s issue of AUGIWorld is focused on the topic of training. Which means that this is the third time this year that my letter to you is focused on the topic of training (I looked it up.) I could write about something else and ignore the theme of this issue. However, I feel that training is a crucial element to a company’s bottom line. I am more than happy to discuss the topic further, precisely because I am passionate about training.

In my letter to you in July, I mentioned trying to get your company to put a two- or three-day productivity training protocol in place. I would like to expand on this.

Yes, it may be difficult to change management’s attitude if there is not a culture of training in place, especially when you’re talking about onboarding. My recent experience with a large company could be eye-opening to you, so I’m going to share it. Granted, I am talking about a large company that is publicly owned. This is vastly different from a smaller company with private owners. But the principles apply, no matter the size of company.

This company has some mandatory training that new hires are required to take. The amount of training that is required varies, depending on the position. The interesting part is that this mandatory training is for things that are required by human resources. Think about that for a minute…

The human resources department deems that some training is so critical that every person that becomes part of the organization MUST take the training. The subjects and the length of time for this HR training are immaterial to my point. The important takeaway is that you cannot avoid the training if you want to work for the company.

What about training in the design-related applications on which your company depends? Are your new people being formally trained in your company’s standards and best practices? Aren’t these the very things that have a huge impact on overall productivity and deliverable quality? Does management see that such training MUST take place?

Aren’t those interesting questions?

The reason that HR makes some training mandatory is because there is a huge risk involved if someone acts in a way that is inappropriate. This is important to the company. What about the risk to the company when someone does not understand how to use their tools? Or what about the issues that can arise when someone doesn’t know the standards and best practices used by the company to produce quality deliverables? Isn’t this just as important to your company from a risk perspective?

Mandatory training should not be left solely to the discretion of human resources. It is also critical for your design staff.

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