Training is a tricky beast. At first glance, it seems it should be easy. You should only have to tell your employees what is going on, what they need to do, and how to do it, and then be able to move on. However, this is anything but the case. Developing and running your own training program can be quite costly, even more so than your first thought.
The cost of developing your training program is one of the first costs you’ll need to consider. Depending on the complexity of the training and content, you can expect to spend between 25 and 50 hours of development time per hour of training. This may vary wildly since some of you may have come across someone who is highly proficient with training rules and regulations, but is also good with training development, and this could take less time.
Also, how you are going to administer the training will alter this. Developing a computer-based training will take more time initially but will also have lower long-run deployment and managing costs. If you only have one person developing the training, this can also take longer, but if you get three or four people on the team, this may be shorter. So there is a large amount of variability, but in the end, this could take 50 or more hours of an employee’s time. How much development costs is not only dependent on how much each employee involved gets paid but should also include some extra to compensate for what they would have accomplished that will not now be accomplished or pushed to another employee (For example, if you have an employee making $52,000 per year, and they spend two months developing the training, the up front costs are $8,000 for the development. However, the tasks that they needed to get done that month would not have been accomplished, as they were developing training. Depending on what their other tasks are, this could ‘cost’ the company between $800 and $6,000, bringing the total cost of development to $14,000). In the end, developing your own training program can end up quickly costing you tens of thousands of dollars!
Next, you will need to consider how to deploy your training program. There are various benefits and downsides with each. Furthermore, this will likely be dependent on how big your company is and what space is available for training. Some of you may be able to get away with an old-school, overhead projector with decent enough class sizes to make the costs worth it. You may have desks or tables for your trainees to use while they attend this classroom-style setup.
Regardless of the setup, you will need to consider the costs involved. Running the electricity by way of turning on lights, projectors and computers should be considered. If someone is teaching the class in person (instead of online), then you need to factor in that person’s time. You also need to factor in the cost of training employees. If you have 10 employees taking training at once with a manager teaching the three-hour training, your costs can get steep quickly. You also have training materials to consider. Are you handing out worksheets? Who is creating those? What tests need to be taken, and how will those be graded? All of these factors need to be considered.
Third, you will need to look at the management of your training program. Training programs require the maintenance of the program to ensure it is up to date. You will need to ensure that you have someone monitoring the regulations and making sure there aren’t any changes that you need to take into account. You also need to confirm training requirements and make sure that the right employees are getting the right training with the proper frequency. Training records need to be maintained in such a fashion that your inspector will be satisfied that your training programs meet all the necessary requirements. You need to know things about making sure any certificates of completion have what the inspectors want on there, and this isn’t always readily available information.
Finally, you should consider the costs that you will incur in the event of turnover. The Sasha Corporation compiled the results of 15 studies and found that the average cost to replace an $8-per-hour employee is almost $9,500! This cost would only increase with the heightened levels of attention that need to be paid to aviation. These costs could be as high as $500 per employee. You will want to make sure that you are minimizing the cost per employee so that, in the event of turnover, you don’t need to spend another $10,000 to give them the proper aviation security training that they are required to have.
In the end, developing, deploying, and running your own training program can get very expensive, very quickly. The challenge in this is that most of the costs seem to be hidden just below the first layer or are not costs that most people factor in, even though you should. In the end, outsourcing your training may be a legitimate option to you as this should allow you to piggyback off somebody else who has already spent the money developing training. Keep in mind; development is not the only cost that you will incur with your training program. Next month, we will discuss the costs involved in having a staff or contract instructor.