Inside the value of training

by Dan Malovany
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When it comes to training, baking and snack companies cannot afford not to do it, said Holly Mockus, product manager at Alchemy Systems, speaking at the American Society of Baking’s BakingTech 2015 conference. As part of an eye-opening panel on the value of training, Ms. Mockus documented the cost of investing in training — and not.

Take employee safety. Overall, workplace injuries and fatalities cost the U.S. economy $198.2 billion. In 2013, food manufacturers reported 71,000 recordable injuries and illnesses. Some 40% of workplace injuries involve employees with less than one year on the job. That’s incredibly important, given that voluntary turnover — leaving the job — runs at a 23.4% rate.

Ms. Mockus stated that replacing an employee costs one-half to five times that worker’s salary, which in manufacturing averages around $35,000. To put it in perspective, she noted the annual cost of turnover for a firm with 100 employees is more than $400,000. That’s not chump change. Training also can increase productivity.

Ms. Mockus presented statistics that indicate 70% of American workers are not engaged or are actively disengaged in their job, resulting in $550 billion in lost productivity per year. Training is a feel-good topic that everyone likes to talk about. But throwing away money by not investing in employees may cause some managers to feel sick to their stomach.
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