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Benefits of Job Shadowing

written by: Vikas Vij•edited by: Michele McDonough•updated: 1/11/2011

Want to create the best possible training system for new employees with minimum time and cost? Consider the benefits of job shadowing to the employer and evaluate its applicability to your organization.

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    Advantages of Job Shadowing for the Business Organization

    Job Shadowing Job shadowing is one of the time tested techniques of training newly recruited employees for their job assignments. There are some excellent benefits of job shadowing to employers that make it a preferred form of training in many organizations. The goal of the organization is to train its new employees in the best possible manner so that they can perform their roles optimally and achieve high productivity. At the same time, it is important that the training should be conducted efficiently, consuming minimal time and money. The sooner the trainee is ready for the job, the sooner he can begin to contribute to the company’s bottom line.

    Photo Credit: www.sxc.hu duchesssa

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    Building Confidence of New Employees

    One of the key benefits of job shadowing to employers is that newly hired employees can build their confidence very fast and assume responsible roles within the organization in minimal time. This confidence comes from having seen the job closely first-hand. No classroom training sessions or any other form of training can provide actual hands-on experience or build confidence so naturally.

    The new employee gets an opportunity to personally see and experience different situations, procedures, methods and scenarios during the course of work. This is real life training and the secure environs of a classroom are no substitute for this real life experience. The employees that are trained in this way are likely to commit the least number of mistakes when they actually assume full responsibility and position in the company.

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    Reducing Interpersonal Conflict and Fostering Team Spirit

    It is in the employer’s interest that there be a good rapport between old employees and new recruits. It fosters team spirit and minimizes the chances of interpersonal conflicts within the organization. During the process of job shadowing, the trainee usually gets sufficient opportunity to interact with other employees and develop natural relationships with them.

    A new employee that gets involved with the company through job shadowing is likely to be accepted more easily by existing employees. This acceptance encourages the trainee to learn faster and helps to remove apprehension about fitting into the internal environment and culture of the company. A harmonious relationship between new and existing employees helps the company to optimize productivity as a cohesive team.

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    Developing Skills

    Job shadowing is a mentoring technique that helps new employees develop management skills more effectively and naturally. It is the closest substitute to actual job experience that a trainee can receive. A successful job shadowing program orients the trainee to handle unexpected situations and challenges at work with efficiency and skill. The goal of the program is to bring out the best talent and ability of the employee so that he becomes productive for the organization at the earliest and adds value to the business from day one.

    Some organizations also use job shadowing programs as a part of succession planning. Before the old executive leaves and the new one takes over his position, it can help in certain situations to go through a job shadowing session to make the transition smooth and efficient.

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    Employee Motivation and Retention

    Job shadowing is usually received very positively by new employees. The organization places trust in their ability from the start and helps them to become familiar with the internal environs and work culture of the company quickly. An organization that goes the extra mile in grooming its new employees for the job and plays the role of a mentor, is likely to gain loyalty of the employees. It is easy to motivate new employees through job shadowing and win their loyalty early. Organizations with excellent mentorship programs have a better record of employee retention in the long run.

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    Lower Cost of Training

    Job shadowing usually does not require specialist trainers or mentors to conduct the training sessions. Many companies spend a substantial amount of funds on hiring professional training agencies or creating an in-house training department to groom new employees. However, with job shadowing all such expenses may get reduced or eliminated entirely.

    Job shadowing leverages the experience and knowledge of existing employees of the company. Employees do not need to compromise their regular work and the job shadower continues to learn by observation during the course of work. Therefore, both in terms of time and money, job shadowing can be accomplished with least amount of investment from the organization.