Reported by the Harvard Business Review, research concludes that, “employer-provided training has the same effect on job satisfaction as a 17.7% net wage increases…” (Budria, 2010). In short, we can conclude that employees view employer-provided training as a valuable part of their job and pay. Employees don’t like being incompetent and training gives them the tools to do their job effectively and with less stress.
Pretty much, total wage is just one aspect of whether or not you keep your employees and, equally as important, continue to recruit good, new employees to retool your workforce. This is because wage has a direct relationship with non-monetary differences among jobs, such as job attractiveness, job safety, and workplace environment (Sowell, 2010).
For instance, a teacher might choose to work at a given elementary school for $2,500 less salary per year in exchange for an air-conditioned classroom. Or, a professional trucker might demand a nicer rig in exchange for a more dangerous route. We call these compensating wage differentials, meaning, workers will forfeit part of their earnings for desirable workplace attributes (Ibid.).
So how can your law firm learn from this? All too often I walk into a firm that has excellent tools, but a staff that thoroughly dislikes them because they simply don’t know how to leverage them to their advantage (yet). If the firm just spent a little time teaching employees how these tools are advantages of working at the firm (as opposed to working at a firm that does everything by pen and paper), and then provided adequate training, the firm would see immediate workflow gains and increased job satisfaction (and thus lower turnover).
Moreover, any firm can buy the best tools and the best people, but if they can’t integrate the two, then you’re efforts are wasted. Your software systems cost big money so make sure you get the most out of them or you’re just taking money out of your own pocket. Moreover, these things will help you remain competitive and should stimulate demand in your services.
- For more information on other compensating wage differentials, read about a blockbuster study released by Cisco about What’s More Important Than Salary to New Attorneys?
- For more information on the benefits of training, read Why You Shouldn’t Skimp on Training and The Real Cost of Inaction.
- Lack of training doesn’t just affect your bottom line, it can also drive people to misuse your tools and break policies. Find out Why Young Workers Break Your IT Rules and what you can do about it.
“Basic Economics: A Common Sense Guide to the Economy.” (4th edition ed.). Sowell, Thomas, 2010. Cambridge, Mass: Perseus Books Group. ISBN 978-0-465-02252-6.
“Workers Consider Training To Be as Valuable as a Raise.” The Daily Stat, 2012. Harvard Business Review. Found on 18-May-12 at: http://web.hbr.org/email/archive/dailystat.php?date=051812.
“The Shadow Value of Employer-Provided Training.” Budria, Santiago and Swedberg, Pablo, Dec-2010, CEEApIA. Found on 18-May-12 at: http://www.ceeapla.uac.pt/uploads/pms/attachments/Paper15-2010.pdf.