When it comes to the office, tech support might seem like something best left to the white-sleeved techies of the IT department. However, there are many benefits to instituting IT training for employees, regardless of their affiliations. As any employer knows, training is the cornerstone of a smooth work environment, enable employees to perform tasks at maximum efficiency without the potential for catastrophic events along the way. Training courses take many forms whether it’s a formal class through an instructor, shadowing a senior employee or hands-on training with the whole department. Each method has its strengths, but any access to IT training an employer provides will bolster the overall work environment.
To begin with, reliance on technology is at an all-time high. Society is long past the point where adding familiarity with Microsoft Office to a résumé will cut it. Not only are offices more dynamic, but the way companies do business is steadily changing. More employees telecommute than ever, and even employees in a traditional office setting will interact with technology on a near-constant basis. When even navigating the office requires a passable understanding of tech, the need for training courses becomes apparent.
Beyond the basics, cloud computing has greatly affected the way consumers connect. Marketing has adjusted accordingly with social media playing a major role in purchasing decisions. Without proper training, employees may either make a major mistake in a customer interaction or may be missing out in a huge demographic of buyers altogether. So-called Millennials now form the backbone of buyers, but they also are becoming the cornerstone of the workforce. This demographic grew up in a time before the Internet boom yet still relies heavily on technology to make informed decisions. Because of this, workplaces that appeal to this interest will both attract more customers and more interested job seekers.
While this greater inter-connectivity has promoted the transfer of information and ideas, it has also shifted how employers staff their companies. Many companies now specialize in things like payroll, transactions and even technical support. Because of this, many companies do not even have a tech support department of their own, which means any problems with technology can set production back even further. Instead of waiting around for help to arrive, savvy employers should opt to have people in the office who understand the basics of troubleshooting.
To that end, IT training can easily pay for itself. When the time lost from a technical malfunction is considered, funding a training program for employees is an investment. While it will still take time to diagnose and repair an issue, employees won’t be waiting around idly until a technician can arrive. This keeps employees engaged in work, which means employers aren’t losing money in labor costs even though production may still suffer. Support technicians are also not always available at a convenient time, which can shut down an entire project for the day. Employees who can troubleshoot even smaller issues or understand how to search for those answers may be able to complete the task long before help arrives, creating only a small delay in business.