I do HR consulting, with a focus on helping businesses establish training and development programs for their employees. I also do a bit of generalist HR consulting such as remuneration, performance management, etc. but my main business is training and development. Because of the pandemic, work has been slow so I started working night doing some lecturing at a local university.
I had one large business that is in the community services industry who I had been consulting with in performance management for the better part of two years. The Chief Operating Officer was very happy with my work (or so I thought), and we had a chat just before Christmas about what the next twelve months will look like for them.
COO: Next year, we are looking into developing our training programs for staff. We really want to make sure our staff are getting the best training possible.
Me: That’s actually my area of expertise. I’d love to work with you on that!
COO: Oh, well we’ll keep that in mind. We’ve actually hired another company to manage it, though. We know it’s out of area for them so they’re charging us well over $100k for it. We are expecting big things from it though – we know they can handle it!
I found out the name of the other company that was hired. They are a hospitality business that offers catering for events and does minor hospitality industry training on the side.
Fast forward to this year, and I meet with the COO to ask how things are progressing with what areas they need me for the coming six months. We begin discussing the business generally, and I ask how the training and development side of things are going.
COO: Not as great as we had hoped. We have needed to pay them another $75k because they keep complaining that the work we’re asking them to do is out of their scope. Apparently they all need some special training.
Tonight I had my first lesson teaching intro in training and development. There were at least four people from this hospitality business present – two of them in chefs uniforms looking dead on their feet, falling asleep. Given I would have charged the large business about half of the $175k they have shelled out for their training programs, something tells me that they will be struggling to see value for money anytime soon.