Most employers recognize providing professional development opportunities is a benefit many employees expect. In fact, a 2013 survey of 4,000 randomly selected members of the Society for Human Resource Management found 88 percent of organizations offer professional development opportunities as a benefit for employees.
However, many workers aren’t satisfied. A 2014 TINYhr survey of more than 200,000 employees around the world found 66 percent of employees feel their current employer doesn’t provide enough opportunities for growth or professional development.
Perhaps a lack of funding is the reason. If that’s the case, here are 50 of the best (and free) professional development resources for employees:
1. Career development.
Employees are always looking for ways to shape their skills, experience and the future of their career. Provide them with classes that enable them to develop the professional skills they need to advance their careers within the workplace so they don't go looking for jobs elsewhere.
Here’s a roundup of the best (and free) career development courses:
Land That Promotion, Muse University
LinkedIn Learning Webinars, LinkedIn
Beyond the To Do List, iTunes
Hack Your Work Life, Muse University
Professional Presence, Kaplan University
2. Communications development.
Strong communication skills are a necessity in the workplace. A 2014 CareerBuilder survey of about 2,100 hiring managers found 56 percent of respondents desire candidates who are effective communicators.
Here’s a roundup of the best (and free) communications development courses:
8 Steps to Discovering and Creating Content Your Audience Will Love, Online Marketing Institute
The Lede Podcast, Copyblogger
Technical Writing, New Jersey Institute of Technology
Professional, Technical Writing, Purdue University
Writing for the Web, Class Central
Communication for Managers, Massachusetts Institute for Technology
Proposal Writing, New Jersey Institute of Technology
Corporate Communication, Saylor Academy
Being an Effective Presenter, Udemy
Related: How to Hack Your Team's Productivity
3. Technology skills development.
Technology is taking over the workforce, and employees need to be able to edit website code or effectively use Microsoft Excel. In an analysis of more than 100 million job postings by Burning Glass in 2014, it was discovered that 80 percent of middle-skill jobs require candidates to possess strong digital skills.
Here’s a roundup of the best (and free) technology skills development courses:
Google’s Python Class, Google
Intensive Introduction to Computer Science, Harvard Open Courses
Microsoft Virtual Academy, Microsoft
Introduction to Cyber Security, FutureLearn
Excel Easy, Excel Easy
Strategic Information Technology, Saylor Academy
Related: Ban Dull Meetings at Your Workplace
4. Leadership development.
Regardless of whether an employee is ready for a management position, employers need to shape every employee into a leader. In fact, Deloitte’s 2015 Millennial survey of more than 7,800 Millennials from around the world found 60 percent of respondents hope to reach a senior leadership position with their current employer.
Here’s a roundup of the best (and free) leadership development courses:
A Dose of Leadership, iTunes
Fundamentals of Management, Coursera
Introduction to Management, Kaplan University
What Great Bosses Know, iTunes
Managing People Who Hate Managing, American Marketing Association
Being Boss, iTunes
The Enterprise Shed: Making Ideas Happen, FutureLearn
Strategic Management, Open2Study
5. Analytical skills development.
Employers desire employees who are creative and innovative thinkers. A 2013 online survey of 318 employers by Hart Research Associates found 93 percent of respondents think the ability to think critically is more important asset than the candidate’s undergraduate major.
Here’s a roundup of the best (and free) analytical skills development courses:
Big Data: Measuring and Predicting Human Behavior, FutureLearn
Big Data for Better Performance, Open2Study
Business Statistics, Saylor Academy
The Analytics Edge, edX
Fundamentals of Accounting, Alison
Sets, Counting, and Probability, Harvard Open Courses
Making Sense of News, edX
Introducing Corporate Finance, OpenLearn
What are your favorite free resources for professional development? Tell us in the comments below.