If you’re like most graduates and early-career professionals, going back to school will mean quitting your job and accepting a gap in your CV. Not to mention the additional financial pressure of studying abroad in order to maximise the benefits of your degree. The obvious answer seems to be enrolling in an online Master’s degree and trying to balance the time and resources between studies and work.
However, employers have been shifting from seeing online degrees as a problem for their staff to embracing it as an opportunity. Here are the main reasons why employers have begun to encourage and pay for their employees’ online degrees:
1. More education means better employees
By allowing and encouraging employees to pursue their desired degrees online, managers can not only incentivise a worker to stay, but they also help ensure that the staff is better trained, have a wider set of skills and are up to date with the current academic experience in the field. Employers themselves benefit from receiving the latest developments in the field through their pro-active employee-students.
2. Alternative to in-house trainings
When one or more employees need to be trained, a company needs to allocate significant manpower and resources to train or re-train a worker in a certain field. But managers have discovered that, by helping the would-be students choose an adequate online degree, many logistical problems could be avoided, as well as costs reduced. Moreover, by partially or entirely paying for these courses, instead of trainings, employers eliminate transition time from training to work, allowing workers to effectively switch to work tasks through a few clicks instead of changing venue.
3. Cheaper to study while working
For both employee and company, the option of following an online degree while working is more affordable. The potential student benefits greatly from distance learning, by saving money from not going to study abroad, to gaining a salary and not paying tuition or taxes for enrolment. The employer also gains from this, by being able to recruit affordable entry-level staff with low experience, receptive to choosing a free degree recommended by their employer.
4. Work stability during studies
For companies, funding online degree programmes for their employees is also a form of insurance that makes workers unlikely to leave during their prolonged studies. Otherwise, the student-workers have to accept paying the company back for the costs of enrolment and tuition. But there are advantages to the employees, mainly because the degree comes at little or no cost alongside years of work experience in the same relevant field. Basically, after graduating, the alumnus becomes an empowered professional with many more career perspectives and an improved CV.
5. Creating competent managers
Many companies adhere to the plan of promoting loyal and competent employees to management positions, but efficient organisational skills can’t just be trained on the job, especially for top management positions. Companies are starting to prepare their best workers with an online degree in Management in order to avoid recruiting and negotiating for management staff from outside the company. Also, the high quality of management study programmes make them a good investment for companies seeking to create the board members of the future.
6. Avoiding burnout and draining routines
Alternating between workflow and learning is intended to reduce the risks of apathy, routine and burnout for employees. This especially means online courses, which are a way of disconnecting with the tasks, while maintaining an engaged mind and learning new things. Companies are also more likely to invest in useful online degrees and certificates instead of excessive entertainment which might disrupt the work environment completely.
7. Online degrees as employee benefits
More and more potential employees are negotiating their benefits and compensation packages to include paid frameworks for long-term education and qualifications. What was once specific only to certain work fields has now become an increasingly widespread practice. This is the result of more coherent and empowered employees, keen on personal development. Therefore, as companies face this trend, they have begun to anticipate this necessity, offering enrolment options during recruitment interviews.
Whether the decision comes from specific investment strategies or as a result of employee pressure and demands, companies have started to encourage, intermediate and finance online degrees for their employees and this practice is, undeniably, a successful practice for all parties involved. So make sure you take advantage of this trend and apply for a distance learning Master’s degree.