Not so, says Linda Newell, director of learning and development for Denver-based Policy Studies Inc.
With a little work, you can prepare your employees for just about anything, translating into greater return on your investment. Here’s what Newell suggests to make it happen:
-Appoint a key employee to train newer staff members in small “chunks” of time. No one has time to train away from work for several hours at a time, so try “lunch and learns” or “power hours.”
-Use government resources. You have several options at your disposal. Example: The U.S. Labor Department’s Employment & Training Administration offers training grants to small businesses if you’re located in an enterprise zone. To learn more about the application process or find out if your business falls within an enterprise zone, visit www.doleta.gov/business/ezec. You can also find free or low-cost, online and audiovisual training on a wide range of topics on DOL’s site: www.dol.gov/dol/topic/training.
-Tap groups such as the American Red Cross (www.redcross.org), which can provide CPR courses, emergency preparedness and disaster training. Barter for services, including temp agencies, to see if they can provide training on ergonomics, safety or time .
-Find cheap—or free—technology. Check out Moodle (http://moodle.org), a free online course management system that allows users to create their own training programs. It’s designed by tech experts and includes modules for online registration, course formats, filters, question types, surveys and database fields.