Knowledgeable employees give the best service. Tuition reimbursement promotes continuing education, but not all employees want to sit in class after a full day at work, says Ariel Glassman, marketing manager for Network Software Associates (NSA). That's why the Arlington, Va., software development company began offering financial assistance to employees who purchase job-related computer products. The policy encourages employees to educate themselves. "People play around on their personal computers at home and learn," says Glassman.
NSA can serve its clients better, according to Glassman, if its 35 employees have a better understanding of the Internet and rapid changes in computer technology. And it's an investment in customer satisfaction, because the company stays current on both technology and customer needs. By subsidizing self-education, NSA has been able to capture 70% of the local market in just seven years.