As more business owners look to advance their own talent rather than continually hire new employees, they’re realizing the growing role employee development plays in their company's success.

According to the Deloitte Human Capital Trends Report, leadership is the second most important concern for organizations. But a Bersin by Deloitte study of millennial leaders found that 30 percent of respondents did not feel ready to be in their leadership roles.

Savvy business owners are responding to that sentiment with programs designed to give employees the skills needed to grow in their roles and eventually take leadership positions. According to Forbes, U.S. spending on corporate training has grown to over $70 billion annually, including initiatives like on-site and industry-specific training, undergrad and MBA tuition reimbursement, and financing for certificate and degree programs.

The biggest benefits of investing in these types of employee training and development include:

1. Attract high-quality employees

Employee training and development is a sought-after benefit for many talented job seekers, so offering these programs makes your business more attractive to high-caliber prospects.

2. Increased job satisfaction levels

When employees feel challenged and confident in their work, it increases engagement and productivity, which helps make your business run more efficiently.

3. Keeps skills competitive

Having employees stay current on industry trends and innovations helps your business better react and adapt to changes, giving you a competitive edge in the marketplace.

4. Better retention rates

The cost of replacing an employee far outweighs the cost of continuing training, so keeping employees satisfied through corporate development lowers turnover and, as a result, spending.

5. Internal promotion opportunities

Promoting employees from within helps you identify who’s really management material, and results in leaders who are already familiar with the business and its culture, and can hit the ground running in their new role from the start.