On-Site College Class Opportunities: A Good Idea for Your Company or Not?
In today’s economy, continuing education opportunities are what fuel growth. Companies that focus on workforce development create an environment where employees have the skills and knowledge necessary to be successful and competitive in the workplace. No matter the industry, the success of a business is dependent upon educated, highly skilled workers. How, then, do companies ensure their employees are gaining the skills needed to keep up with an ever changing and demanding workforce? The answer lies with workforce development. Through courses and on the job training, workforce development programs provide employees with opportunities to learn important skills and meet their professional goals. Many companies are willing to invest in such learning opportunities for their employees, yet are faced with a dilemma. Should they provide on-site college classes or opt for off-site learning opportunities? Here we will examine a few of the pros and cons in order to decide which option is best for your company.
Benefits of On-Site Classes
Location: The main benefit to on-site classes and training is the location. When these classes are available on the company’s premises, it saves valuable time for the employees that would otherwise be lost on commuting to and from a different location. The convenience of on-site classes is also a major motivator for employers who might otherwise opt to not take these additional classes.
Tailored Content: When classes are offered on-site, companies have the ability to tailor every aspect of the course and customize the lessons to meet the specific needs of the company.
Affordability: Most college classes are expensive on an individual basis. With on-site training, however, the cost is based on a group and is usually significantly reduced. This means more employees can take advantage of the opportunity and it will also save big bucks for the company.
Flexibility: On-site classes can be scheduled at times that are convenient to the company and employees. Unlike traditional university style classes, they do not have to stick to a specified schedule that might clash with work hours. Employees can make the classes work around their schedule.
Cons of On-Site Classes
It’s Not Conducive for Multiple Locations: On-site classes might not be ideal if your company has participants coming from multiple locations that are not close to each other. In this case, it might be easier to choose an off-site location that is geographically convenient to everyone.
Difficulty Focusing: While it is certainly convenient, on-site classes can also prove to be a distraction because employees might be more focused on their job rather than the coursework. For some people being closer to their desk can take some of the focus away from the training. Sometimes it can actually be more relaxing for the employees to have a change of venue where they can focus all of their attention on the training itself.
Change of Scenery: Some people prefer a change of location when they are attending a class or training session. It can be a good refresher to get away from the office for a little while and can help improve focus and morale.
While there are certainly pros and cons to on-site training, the decision of whether or not it is right for your company is dependent upon many factors. Your company will need to consider cost, participant location, time, customization, and availability of a trainer or teacher.