Business Insider has an article dated 12 Nov, that struck a cord with me, an event i have been waiting to see occur and dawn on businesses ever since i came to North America.
The issue surrounds the training of workers or rather the total lack of undertaking training with a more long term view and its impact in the inability of companies to fill positions that exist.
Training of workers is something i have personally noticed is pretty much a non event in this part of the world unless it has to do with what i call more of a briefing on some safety issue that would have liability associated with it or some customer service training or very direct training for a specific new machine which does not come with a operator all wrapped up in a box.
No what i am refering to is more complex than a morning seminar or one day wonder kind of program and its not until ones back is to the wall and HR have spent loads of dollars to find that ellusive non existant ideal candidate that the company finally breaks down and realizes we gonna have to train someone.
Its been my view upon seeing some of the job ads and the continous mention in Canada of shortage of skills that the issue is not one of shortage of skills but rather total lack of leadership in companies.
We all talk about how a rookie straight out of University might know the theorectical side of their work and yeah they may have undertaken a practicle project here or there but that in no way equips them to be able to walk into a job and be entirely productive day one. They still need nurturing constructive on the job training, mentoring and guidance. Then they may have some form of technical skills but these need to be supplemented over time with aspects such as supervision training, management development training and ultimately executive development training.
Certainly where i came from it was part of our culture. The very firm i started out with after post secondary training way back in the day used to hire at least 8 trainees each year and that for a relatively small company. We were given normal tasks but we were well supervised and mentored and the pros were allowed and expected to take time out and show us the ropes and help us on our way.
Then there were company held training programs that went on for weeks at a time at separate facilities to teach more general business skills in groups with workers from a variety of departments and different plants.
HR had a training department with full time trainers. Trainees were taken on at a variety of levels. We had a nursery where prior to them being unleashed on the company they would go for specific skills upon returning from their post secondary field of study.
Now my experiences here seem to be HRs job is to find that perfect fit using some fancy software thats gonna filter resumes and only seek out the ideal resume with all the keywords in it. What a load of nonsense in my opinion.
So suddenly we have an awakening that perhaps we have to get back to basics and take ownership of the problem as a company and set about starting up more apprenticship programs and train people like would have happened in the past.
Its about time this happens.
Surely it is common sense that as the huge baby boomer cohort retires and along with them all the years of valuable knowlegde and skill that there is going to be a shortage of skilled personnel equivalent to a brain drain in a third world country.
I say its a leadership issue because a true leader as in Ceo or Department manager needs to learn that they are responsible for their staff and staffs action and not hide behind hiring criteria but make a human judgement call. Sure sometimes they gonna be wrong and there should be no need to throw them under the bus for this otherwise we have status quo.
Apologies for the somewhat rant of my post but unemployment is a serious issue and affects everyone. There is so much cheap talk on the matter but little action.
Heres to hoping the business world is coming to its senses once again.