How to get your boss to sign off on training
Does your team need more skills and knowledge to do their jobs properly? Have you had your eye on several training programs that could benefit your team and further develop your professional skills? If so, then you may have a challenge on your hands. You need to convince your boss that the training is worth the business expense, something that’s often easier said than done.
It gets even trickier if your employer doesn’t have much in the way of a training budget.
Yet there’s a real demand for continued education and on-the-job training, as a study from the SHRM Research Institute found that 55% of workers said they need more training to perform their jobs effectively. 38% also said they desire training that’s more relevant to their current roles, so the need is real.
Your job, then, is to convince those at the top that the training expenses will pay off in the future. There are a few ways you can go about getting your boss to sign off on training programs.
State your case
First, you need to consider how you’re going to approach your boss with the request. This can be in the form of an email or a written proposal that is delivered in person, via their inbox, or via email.
Include a quote and ROI
Beyond providing reasons the training is necessary (i.e., better equipping your employees, developing your career, etc.), you also need to talk about what’s most important to your boss: the company’s bottom line.
As such, you’ll need to research different training programs and their prices before writing the letter. Once you find the highest-quality provider offering the best rate, include the quote in your proposal (you can include several quotes if there are a few attractive options).
Lastly, your boss will want to know that the training investment will pay off, so you’ll need to show the ROI the company will see once the training is complete.
The traditional formula for calculating the ROI of a training program is:
Program benefits – training costs/program costs = ROI
To determine the benefits, you’ll need to measure the productivity of your team before the training program. Once you have that, you can predict the improvement you’ll see due to the training, such as being able to take on more calls or clients.
With a clear prediction for costs and ROI, your boss will be more likely to sign off on the training. Then you can work on implementation and preparing for success.
What if you have the authority to sign off on training?
If you’re a manager who doesn’t need a higher-level supervisor to sign off on training, it’s still a good idea to gather some of these details in case they ask. Plus, it will help you determine the value before making that final decision.
It may also be helpful to share some of these figures with your staff. That way, they will buy into the training, instead of merely going through the motions. It’s a win-win.