Tesco puts its new recruits in the picture

first_img Comments are closed. Related posts:No related photos. Previous Article Next Article Judith Nelson, head of stores HR at Tesco explains how the retailer took anovel approach to induction training to ensure its staff learned and understoodthe company valuesInduction training Designed and delivered by: BigPicture Learning, Heathlands, The Hatch, BurfieldVillage, Berks Phone: 0118 983 6428 [email protected] a major retailer, with more than 970 stores worldwide, and pre-taxprofits of more than £1bn, Tesco has an incredible success story. Supportingits success are its people – more than 40,000 individuals join the Tescopayroll annually, from all walks of life and cultural backgrounds. Apart frombeing a mammoth induction effort on its own, Tesco also needs to ensure eachnew member of staff has the opportunity to understand their individual role incontributing to the Tesco core purpose and values. This requires an innovativeinduction programme that caters for different styles of learning and varyingcommitments to the job. Tesco called on BigPicture Learning – an organisation that specialises inbespoke, visually-based communication and learning solutions to develop aninduction tool for new recruits that would help them achieve just that. Company values Frontline staff are the ultimate reflection of Tesco to its customers, butall employees have an important role to play in turning core values andcustomer commitment into reality on a daily basis. A major Tesco challenge isto ensure all of its employees, wherever they work, are aware of their role andthat they can clearly see how their actions impact the ‘big picture’ of theoverall business. Judith Nelson, head of stores HR at Tesco, says: “We have invested alot of time and money in understanding and responding to our customers, whatmotivates them to shop with us and what they expect from us. It is importantour staff are aware of customer expectations and that they maintain a positive,consistent attitude. We need to make sure all our employees understand theirrole and how valuable their contribution is to the company and itssuccess.” Initially, BigPicture Learning worked with a Tesco development team toestablish a detailed understanding of how the company operates and how eachdepartment and division supports the Tesco core purpose and values of thecompany. This included the strategy and customer focus behind recent Tescoventures including, financial services, the different store formatsdeveloped such as Tesco Extra, Tesco Express and Tesco Metro and theoperational logistics of supplying stores. Gradually, a picture of the businessemerged. Based around a concept called a ‘ChangeMap¨’, BigPicture Learning created agraphical journey through the history of Tesco, its core purpose, values,business goals, financial aims, operations and marketing strategy and itscommitment to customers. This was coupled with supporting learning tools, structured discussion anddialogue that enabled the information to be presented to new recruits in aninformal and engaging way. The combination of the visual imagery anddiscussion-driven learning ensured it would be easily understood and retainedby a diverse cross-section of employees. Mapping the future As the Tesco journey unfolds, the dialogue focuses participants on key areasof the map for discussion. The journey begins with an illustration of founderJack Cohen at a market stall in 1919, to tell the story of how Tesco firststarted. Participants are encouraged to consider what might have been the corepurpose and values of the business as it was then, and compare and contrast itto what is important in Tesco’s business today. As the journey continues, participants are asked to locate and stop atmilestones represented by visual images. Signposts describe the Tesco customerservice values, delivery trucks contain information on market share, and flowcharts show how the Tesco supply chain operates. Important learning points on the map are complemented by various cards andtools to encourage group participation and discussion. Store Cards describe the rationale and customer benefits of the varyingstore formats. Customer Focus Cards discuss and review customer developmentstrategies and their importance in developing customer loyalty. PerformanceMeasure Cards are used to encourage understanding of the cause and effectrelationships that affect other areas of the organisation. Other tools focus on the distribution component of the business and helpingnew recruits understand how each of the Tesco values are represented ineveryday actions. For ease of implementation, the ChangeMap¨ and supporting tools weredesigned so line managers or HR staff would be able to coach and facilitatelearning. Having easy-to-use tools with a hands-on participative methodologyensured Tesco was able to make effective use of existing internal resources,thereby creating economies of scale. It also had the additional benefit of forging relationships between newstaff and their managers. “Because the ChangeMap¨ is so interactive,”explains Nelson, “it has been an excellent tool for developing initialrelationships between managers and new staff. It makes managers seem moreapproachable and gives them an insight into the new recruit’s personality andcommitment to the job.” Fun learning Nick Whitelock, founder of BigPicture Learning, says the success of theChangeMap¨ concept is because it addresses some of the fundamental principles thatfacilitate learning. He says: “Adults learn in a very ego-centric way. They interpretinformation in a way that is relevant to their individual needs and socherry-pick the information they think they need. Communicating often-complexbusiness issues in an informal, fun and visual way allows people to ‘discover’the information and assimilate it to their own life experiences, making it morerelevant to themselves and therefore more likely to be retained. Likewise,encouraging the sharing of ideas within a small group promotes insight andunderstanding and for many people unlocks the ‘ah-ah’ factor where connectionsare made and real learning takes place.” Feedback from trainers and participants has been very good. Nelson says:”Our managers find the format very easy to work with and have a tremendousamount of fun each time they run an induction session. “The new recruits feel involved from day one, and report an early senseof ownership about Tesco and its core values. The participative element to theirinduction, where they have the opportunity to share their experiences anddiscuss elements of the ChangeMap¨, means that they come away from the sessionfeeling valued and motivated.” The induction ChangeMap¨ is one of several used by Tesco to communicatemessages such as procedures and people management to the organisation,including to distribution and head office staff. Because of its universalappeal, the company is planning to translate and roll out some of theChangeMaps¨ across operations in Asia and Europe. VerdictAcross-board learning that appeals to allTesco recruits a large number ofpeople to work in its stores every year and it is important for us to ensure aconsistent level of service to our customers. It is also very important thatour frontline staff understand how their actions and attitude can affect therest of the organisation.Our employees come from a diversity of nationalities, cultures,ages and education and so a training course that appeals across the board isnot always easy to find.Because BigPicture Learning’s training course is in the formatof a visual picture, it crosses the boundaries of employee diversity, making iteasy to understand, fun and interactive.All of the participants have come away feeling motivated andvalued as an important member of the Tesco organisation.Ease of use * * * *Ability to meet business needs * * * *Value for money * * *Impact * * * *Memorability * * *Key: * = Disappointing  ** * * * = Excellent Tesco puts its new recruits in the pictureOn 1 Apr 2003 in Personnel Todaylast_img

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