Network - Fall 2009 - (Page 23)

Canada’s Training Ground Investing in Alberta’s workplace future By Janine Halbesma Gandhi once said, “Learn like you were going to live forever.” If learning is your goal, you may want to consider working for a small business. According to a recent study from the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB), smaller firms are not only investing in employee training, but they are doing it in a big way. The study, entitled Canada’s Training Ground, found that small and medium-sized businesses across the country are investing $18 billion each year on workplace training. The report also shows training in smaller firms looks quite a bit different than their more sizeable counterparts. Larger firms tend to use more formal or professionally delivered training, while smaller firms use more informal or onthe-job practices like mentoring or job shadowing. The reliance on informal training in smaller firms is partly a function of their unique nature. When compared to larger firms, small businesses tend to have flatter organizational structures. Further, employees of smaller businesses often fulfill multiple roles, interacting extensively with other employees and working in close contact with the business owner, typically an expert in the business/field of operations. These characteristics create better and more natural conditions for informal channels of knowledge transfer, rather than for formal training programs. While most estimates look at the amount spent on formal training, CFIB’s report shows that of the $18 billion annual investment, about 70 per cent is related to informal training. The report also reveals training expenses are not the same for all employees. Clearly, the training needs of a new hire without any experience is different than a new hire with experience, or 23 NETWORK Fall 2009

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Network - Fall 2009

Network - Fall 2009
HRIA President’s Message
HRIA Executive Director’s Message
Membership Has its Privileges
HRIA Conference Chair’s Message
What is a PEO?
The Performance Framework
Canada’s Training Ground
The Care and Feeding of Your Team
Social Networking Meets Recruitment 2.0
Making Serious Brand Impact
Establish Sound Legal Footing
It’s Dialogical
Index of Advertisers

Network - Fall 2009