Generation y staff call for more training opportunities in lieu of a pay rise, survey of 2,000 shows

Training and career development is seen as the most popular alternative to pay rise for generation y, according to a survey by training company People 1st and ICM Research.

Their survey with ICM of more than 2,000 employees, found 69% feel more valued by company when offered training.

At a time when offering a promotion or pay rise is unlikely to be possible for many UK businesses younger employees are more likely to value extra training; respondents aged between 18-24 and 25-34 rated further training and career development as the most appealing alternative to a pay rise at (33%) and (35%) respectively.

Across all those interviewed, an extra holiday day (31%) was the most popular alternative to a pay rise followed by the offer of further training and career development (24%).

Two thirds of workers agreed further training would make them feel better about both their job and the company they worked for, while 60% agreed they would be less likely to leave the company if they were offered the training and just over half (53%) said training opportunities would even make them work harder.

Sharon Glancy, business solutions director at People 1st Training Company said: "With businesses wary of the economy falling into a double dip recession, resource is stretched and finding ways to keep employees happy and motivated in a cost effective way is a real challenge. Offering staff training and supporting their career development with your company is a win win situation.

"Almost seven out of 10 (69%) of those we surveyed said they feel more valued by their company when they are given the option of having further training and employers are gaining a workforce with the tools, skills and knowledge to do their jobs better."

Leadership and management training was the most popular training workers would like to receive (33%) followed by IT and social media skills (22%) and finance and administrative training (13%).

Older workers were less likely to want training and development as an alternative to a pay rise - just 16% and 14% of those in age groups 55-64 and 65+ respectively choosing this option.

Glancy added: "The appetite for leadership and management training shows we have a working population that is ambitious to step-up and progress their careers. However, with people needing to work longer now, older workers should not be complacent and need to embrace any opportunities offered for training, or manage their own continued learning, to ensure their skills stay current in a very competitive jobs marketplace."