Last updated: 26.11.13

All businesses 'need a skills development plan'

Skills development planning is essential to ensuring that all employees in a business have the right knowledge and capabilities to fulfil their role.

By organising training sessions to close skills gaps and paying attention to the needs of each member of staff, bosses can keep productivity levels up and motivation high.

Having one eye on the future of a company at all times is also important, and this is another matter skills development plans can help with.

Rather than just meeting an organisation's temporary, immediate needs, they serve as long-term solutions to make sure company performance continues to thrive.

According to a recent survey conducted by the Personal Finance Society among its members, 49 per cent of employers at adviser firms have implemented a skills development plan, while nearly one-quarter (22 per cent) hope to have one drawn up in 2014.

The documents themselves should outline how managers are going to meet training and development requirements in their business in accordance with the resources available.

Sarah Thwaites, deputy chief executive of the Financial & Legal Skill Partnership, said all organisations need a proposal for the business, as well as individual development plans for each worker.

She was quoted by Money Marketing as saying: "There is a regulatory requirement to ensure people are competent, but firms should also be doing it for business reasons as trained staff give better customer service and improve profitability."

Training can also boost morale and make employees feel more valued within their company, plus, if bosses organise for them to access online learning resources, they can develop new skills whenever best suits them.

Greater flexibility regarding skills training is perfect for inspiring worker confidence and improved wellbeing, with a recent study carried out by Opinion Matters for ADP revealing that 21 per cent of participants believe working from home helps them to achieve a better work-life balance.

If organisations' skills development plans incorporate online training in some way, they are bound to notice the benefits in the long run.