It’s critical that a workforce be as up to date as possible on the latest industry tools and technology; however, doing so can be costly. It’s estimated that companies spent approximately $130 billion on training in 2014. Yet even with that large amount of money spent, training can be ineffective in keeping workers abreast of trends in rapidly growing industries. Often, training is  ineffective because it lacks some combination of three important elements: hands-on practice, accountability, and breathing room. Learning is not a passive exercise; it requires active participation. For employees to retain information and use it in their daily tasks, they must have hands-on, real-world-applicable training modules. Accountability is also important in ensuring the effectiveness of a training program. Rigorous assessments should be considered essential in any technical training program, not only to gauge the participants’ engagement with the material, but also to have quantifiable justification for the program. However, this doesn’t mean training should stifle or intimidate employees. Breathing room is necessary for employees to complete training sessions and learn concepts on their own time and in their own way.