Lack of training

I feel my HR team has suffered from high turnover because we don't allocate any budget to training.

Dear Laurence,

I am the assistant manager of a very small HR team covering a relatively large public organisation. Apart from me and my boss, we have had relatively high turnover of staff below us, I think because we don’t allocate any budget to training within the HR team.

Now I feel like I am not getting the training I need to progress in my career. Can you recommend any free or low-cost development options that I can then suggest on behalf of my team?

Untrained, Singapore

First of all, you suspect people are leaving because of a lack of training, but you don’t know that. My first action would be to implement exit interviews if you don’t have them. And if you do have them but you’re not confident in what they’re telling you, to even reach out to people who have left a second time.

It may not be the lack of training. It may be the workload; it may be the leadership style; it may be the culture. You need to validate your assumptions.

It is often a sad reality, that HR people are the cobbler’s children, and the last to receive training. The most progressive HR organisations and teams are good at ensuring that their people are also trained because they understand that it is a multiplier within the organisation. Better trained HR people lead to better workforce outcomes across the board.

You should note that the Singapore government’s focus is on future-skilling the economy, and that training workers in multiple industries are a national priority. HR should be a critical enabler in this in every company. Surely the government needs to be a role model in this case.

There are many good opportunities in Singapore, included many government-supported training programmes, and your Skills Future credit can help. You can also look to online options, including e-Cornell, Coursera, and Udacity. Many of these have free programmes available. I also recommend you network broadly and join some form of HR community.

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