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On-The-Job Career Training

There are many ways students and professionals can receive on-the-job training in most types of industries.

On-the-job training gives students and workers with little experience in a given field or job role an introduction to the industry and the requirements of the job. Most training programs like this work towards getting the trainee qualified through experience or certification to hold one or more positions in that industry.

Unlike internships and apprenticeships, on-the-job training programs are employment programs that are specifically structured to prioritize the professional development of the trainee. Some on-the-job education programs last for a set period of time, while others last until the trainee has achieved the necessary job qualifications.

On-the-job career development programs are usually set up and overseen by individual companies and organizations themselves, with little to no oversight from outside agencies. Some businesses hire third-party companies that specialize in career development or a specific skill set to run a training program.

Because on-the-job training opportunities are intertwined with the participants work duties, the trainee should not be asked to pay for their training or forgo their regular wages during this period. Trainees should be provided with all of the technology and material they will need to succeed in the program by the company or organization providing the course.

Most companies and organizations that provide on-the-job training do so through peer education or top-down training schemes. Read on to learn more about on-the-job training programs and finding the right program for your needs.

Peer-To-Peer Job Training Programs

The majority of on-the-job training programs are mostly administered by employees at the company who work in a similar capacity to the role the trainee expects to have eventually. This peer-to-peer model of training is a great way for new employees to learn about the inner workings of a company or organization from multiple perspectives before being responsible for one limited scope or task. It also gives trainees the opportunity to meet many people at the company and learn under several different teaching techniques.

On-the-job training programs that incorporate peer-to-peer instruction are also best positioned to maximize the strengths of each of their employees by allowing the experts in each field or topic to oversee the training for that subject.   

From the business perspective, having employees train new workers is a great way to sharpen their current employees’ skills and make sure that new members of the community learn how both the industry and a specific company work from the beginning. Incorporating training of coworkers into an employee’s tasks help the company be able to afford to run such a program without significantly increasing overall costs.

In many cases, employees exhibiting excellent peer-to-peer training skills can use their experience and reviews from coworkers to help develop their own career and opportunities. In many structured on-the-job training programs, employees will be encouraged to learn about a job with the help of coworkers from several departments.

On-The-Job Training by Managers and Executives

Some companies and organizations have highly structured on-the-job training programs that allocate time from the schedule of a company manager or other executive to directly teach a new employee. Programs like these tend to be reserved for on-the-job training options catering to experienced professionals who are advancing their career or transitioning from one sector to another.

Participants in executive-led programs benefit from learning from experts in their industry and meeting C-suite level colleagues that work throughout their area.

These types of on-the-job training programs are rarer because they can accept fewer employees at one time and cost the company more valuable human capital than peer-to-peer training programs. Professionals who take part in manager-led programs can usually be confident that companies who choose to invest this much in their future will treat them as valued employees in the future.

Third-Party On-The-Job Employee Training

Instead of designing their own training program in-house, some companies and organizations choose to hire a private third party company specialized in job training or a certain skill set to oversee the onboarding of new employees.

Employee training programs are overseen by a third party generally resemble courses taught directly by the company itself without so much emphasis on specific company culture. These types of training programs are usually carried out at the workplace of the specific employer, but can sometimes be completed in a separate location.

Employees should not expect to receive their training from employees or managers of the hiring company, as courses will be overseen by staff from the consulting agency. In many cases, an outside party will teach a select group of company employees about a new technology or business strategy and then that group will disseminate the new information to the rest of the company’s staff. This is a common on-the-job training technique for short and specific topics.

How to Provide On-the-Job Training to Your Employees

The three types of basic on-the-job training mentioned above can be used by any type of company or organization to train its current staff or its incoming employees. Similarly, businesses that choose to conduct their own on-the-job training can use their employees or managers to educate incoming or advancing workers using a variety of methodologies. The following job training strategies are some of the most commonly used by companies and organizations who oversee their own education programs:

Lecture-style Courses

Many companies and groups choose to organize a regular lecture series to train old and new employees alike on new subjects or developments within their industry. This style of teaching works great for teams that are already relatively familiar with a given subject and who only need to gain familiarity with a new subject.

Lectures can be provided by employees, company executives or outside experts with knowledge on the topic. Some companies offer small lectures to a select group of employees so that they can dedicate their time to intensively teaching a few people who can than go on to teach bigger groups at the company.

Lecture-style job training seminars or courses are usually a cost-efficient way for companies and organizations to educate their workforce. They allow for large amounts of people to be trained quickly and, if recorded, on more than one occasion. This training style also ensures that everyone receives the same core information, making confusion and misunderstandings less likely in the future.

Simulation Training Programs

Some industries favor the use of simulation training programs to quickly teach employees a new skill. On-the-job training programs that use simulation help employees imagine the challenges and various scenarios they would face in a certain role or circumstances in an effort to prepare them for the real event.

Simulation is a popular teaching method for company sales teams and other customer-facing groups. During a simulation, trainees are supposed to behave in the same way they would in a proposed situation while incorporating a mentor’s instructions and guidance. This helps them make any mistakes in a safe environment, before out in the field with real customers.

Self-Directed Job Training

Companies in some industries encourage their employees to develop their professional skills by spending their time on self-directed study. Some companies will have an established self-directed training program that an employee can follow step by step, while others will simply point interested employees towards educational material without laying out a roadmap for success. Whichever the case, employees must be relatively self-motivated and disciplined to be able to complete an intendent job training program. In some cases, employees can expect to guide their own study but will have access to a mentor or group of experts that can advise them on their path.