Training and continuing professional development are a critical part of working life. Every worker needs to continually update their skills, develop their expertise and broaden their horizons to remain up to date and effective in their role.

For self-employed workers, training is even more important. Training adds value to your commercial offering, opens up new contracts, ensures you deliver more value to clients and boosts your confidence. However, many freelance workers and contractors often struggle to build training and continuing professional development into their working life because of funding and time constraints.

When you’re focussed on finding work, winning work and then delivering contracts, building training into your schedule can be challenging. Here we share Danbro’s tips for getting the training you need to grow your expertise and win more work.

  1. Each year set out clear objectives for the training you need. Write a list of the training that will add value to your work, which courses you would like to do and then rank them in order of priority.
  2. Training shouldn’t be seen as a cost. The right training will add value to your work and make you more money, whether that’s improving your confidence or learning a new technical skill.
  3. Carefully work out how much time and money you can and should be committing to training each year and then make sure you commit to the plan.
  4. Look to secure contracts with innovative employers in your industry so you can learn on the job with them. You don’t have to be confined to a classroom to add to your skills and can get some great experiences to add to your CV with the right company.
  5. Look for financial support to tackle training programmes. Many industry bodies have funding available for people to take training courses as it will help to enhance the sector overall.
  6. Most employers run a number of training programmes for their staff and it is worth speaking to your clients to see what courses they offer. If there are programmes that would be beneficial to both you and the employer, try and take part or negotiate a reduced rate. Training with clients is a great way to enhance your skills, add value to your client and integrate into the team.
  7. If all else fails, you have to be prepared to put in the late nights. If you simply don’t have the time to undertake training day to day, look at self-taught, long distance, online and evening courses which can fit around your work. Hard work now could add significant value later on.
  8. And, always remember that any continuing professional development programme that is critical to your work may be an allowable expense if you operate through a limited company or professional employment company like Danbro.

Training can add huge value to you personally and to your clients and will ensure you remain attractive to potential customers while also enabling you to potentially increase your rates. If you have any other tips for people to access training, please share them below or via social media.

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