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CEO: Ignoring the need for IT training is a major mistake

January 24, 2014

Considering how important high-quality technological solutions are for companies in every industry, it makes sense that IT training is an essential part of business operations. It is not enough for owners and executives to deploy new, improved IT tools and strategies; they must also ensure that the company's employees have the skills and knowledge necessary to effectively utilize these resources. Failure to take these steps can have a devastating impact on efficiency, productivity and more.

These consequences were recently highlighted by Lloyd Garten, CEO of Select Exterminating. Writing for Pest Control Technology, Garten indicated that failing to prioritize IT training for his employees was one of his biggest mistakes, one which he then took strong steps to overcome.

Training concerns
Based in New York, Select Exterminating provides services to approximately 50,000 customers, four-fifths of which are commercial accounts.

"Tech-savvy employees are requisite to keeping these customers satisfied," Garten said. "They want automated inspection reports, online payment options and the kind of efficiency you can achieve only when your company is fully automated."

According to Garten, he recognized the need for automation relatively early on. However, he failed to make IT training a sufficiently high-level priority for his employees.

"[My mistake] was in allowing some of our key employees to resist the inevitable changes and underestimating the investment we needed to make in technological training if we were going to grow," he wrote.

By allowing a number of employees to put off their IT training, Garten's organization suffered. It essentially reached a performance peak that could not be overcome without a new focus on technological solutions and IT training.

Learning to succeed
According to Garten, after he realized his mistake, he led his company on a major course-correction. His firm "added a sorely needed training component" to the corporate culture, he wrote, as well as upgraded its technological capabilities.

These steps have enabled the firm to greatly improve its overall performance. The company is able to track its technicians at all times and inform customers of their account statuses instantly, Garten explained.

"We've invested significantly in technology and training, but our ROI is high as enhanced efficiency saves us money every day," the writer stated.

Ultimately, Garten concluded that IT training must be viewed as one of the essential components of a forward-thinking business leader's long-term strategy.

"Moving a business forward requires the vision to recognize opportunity and the confidence to invest in people, processes and infrastructure," he wrote.

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