Turning Barriers into Opportunities: A Literature Review on Small to Medium-Sized Enterprise (SME) Engagement with Formal Training
This literature review focuses on international and New Zealand research into the involvement of small to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) or small businesses in formal training.
The review identifies a number of barriers to formal training, which are:
- due to proportionally higher financial and opportunity costs
- entrenched in the unstable and low-profit context in which SMEs operate
- related to the lack of clear evidence about the benefits to SMEs
- a result of a legacy of mistrust of government initiatives which have often been driven by the concerns of large enterprises.
The main opportunities identified by the report focus on the results of schemes trialled overseas. These include:
- financial incentives
- flexibility of training delivery
- the use of mentors to create strategic training plans
- carefully matching training programmes to SME needs.