Procurement training has obvious benefits. In our ongoing skills benchmarking program, we’ve found that procurement professionals with high levels of skills in seven skill dimensions save their organizations over $1,000,000 per person per year more than procurement professionals with low levels of skills in those same skill dimensions.
The return on investment is huge.
Of course, there are some non-strategic thinkers that see training as an expense rather than an investment. That’s natural – we don’t come out of the womb understanding that ROI is a key driver of business success. So we have our “Procurement Skills & Profit: The Correlation” whitepaper to help those individuals mature in their thinking.
In my line of work, I hear all kinds of excuses not to engage in training. But probably the dumbest one is this:
“I don’t want to pay for employees to be trained, because then they’ll leave for a better job and we’ll lose the money we spent on it.”
Yep. There really are people in decision-making positions that think like this.
What does this mean?
It’s like saying: “Yeah, we have a group of idiots that work here. But we like them like that. They may not help the company, but at least they are loyal and show up every day. And that saves poor old me from the hassle of having to interview people for an open position. ‘Cause those people might expect high compensation and perks like training.”
Here’s what I have to say.
First, your #1 goal as a manager is not to have loyal employees. It is to maximize your department’s contribution to the company. If you are not facilitating your employees’ ability to reach their potential and contribute better results for the company, you are failing as a manager.
Second, training is actually good for retention, not bad. Particularly in this recessionary environment in which you cannot give out raises at all (or, in some cases, even keep employees at last year’s salary levels), investing in training (which benefits both the employee and the organization) is a reward for employees which will make them more loyal and better equipped to contribute to the organization’s success.
Third, procurement is changing so rapidly that anyone who hasn’t trained their employees in two or more years is simply not keeping pace with the rest of the procurement world. Avoiding training is a public indicator that management is simply so out-of-touch that they have no clue how out-of-touch they are!
Whew. That’s my rant for the day.
Whitepaper Wednesday returns tomorrow!
To Your Career,
Charles Dominick, SPSM
President & Chief Procurement Officer
Next Level Purchasing, Inc.
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