It’s time to ditch Casual Fridays: Give employees what they really want

Poeple sitting around a table, backs to viewer, hearing a presentation

Attention business leaders: forget casual Fridays and quarterly pizza parties. Do you want to know the game-changing secret to motivating your teams today?

They want training.

The rise of remote work and skills-based hiring means workers are embracing training as the key to advancing in their careers. That means that for employers, it’s a win-win offering as it can incentivize retention.

In this blog, we’ll provide an overview as to why training is the key to retention, and how to implement the type of training that employees will love.

An incentive where everyone wins.

According to a recent article in CIO (Chief Information Officer), being able to access cost-effective, convenient, and high-quality training is a major career differentiator for IT (Information Technology) professionals, but it’s also a major factor in engagement levels and employee retention.

Training as a tool for retention can take on many forms: Conferences and events, mentoring programs, webinars, seminars, classes, online courses and certification programs, employee lunch and learns, tuition reimbursement and educational membership discount programs.

A joint study backed by the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) and Epignosis found that 76% of employees are likely to stay with a company that offers them meaningful learning and development training. Upskilling your workforce can give companies a competitive edge over organizations that aren’t investing in their employees.

A proactive approach to change

It’s not hard to imagine why acquiring new skills and competencies relevant to current and future roles is a win-win incentive for both employees and employers. In most modern job roles, constant upskilling and reskilling is needed to meet evolving job requirements. Embracing such development also provides opportunities for promotion and advancement within the organization, while building a solid foundation for long-term career growth and success.

Investing in employees makes them feel valued and recognized and – more broadly – shared training builds trust, loyalty, and commitment among team members. Encouraging employees to engage in meaningful and challenging learning experiences fosters a culture of creativity, innovation, and problem-solving skills.

For tech professionals, training empowers them to adapt to technological advancements, industry trends, and market shifts. Engaging with like-minded peers in the field helps to build resilience and agility to navigate change with confidence.


So, what should employers look for as they adopt employee training programs? Here are a few key considerations:

  1. Alignment with company values, mission, and strategic priorities.

  2. Contribute to organizational success through continuous learning and development.

  3. When choosing what type of training to provide, consider the time and expense involved, as well as how easily it can be achieved withing working hours so that employees do not incur fringe expenses associated with the training (for example, through travel), or feel it could encroach on their personal time.

  4. Ensure accessibility, scalability, and integration - where applicable - with existing HR (Human Resources) systems.

  5. Promote adoption and participation: Encourage participation through incentives, recognition, and rewards.


The resounding message is clear: employees crave meaningful, career-enhancing opportunities, with training emerging as the golden ticket. As evidenced by compelling research and real-world input, investing in employee training not only boosts retention rates but also cultivates a dynamic, forward-thinking organizational culture.

By aligning training initiatives with core company values, prioritizing accessibility, and championing participation, businesses can achieve unparalleled growth, innovation, and loyalty. It's a transformative shift that underscores a simple yet powerful truth: when you invest in your employees' growth, you're investing in the future success of your organization.

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