The recruitment, selection and training of people at Arcadia
An Arcadia case study

Page 4: Training and development

Recruiting the right people does not guarantee performance. Employees must also be trained effectively.

Much of the training at Arcadia is on-the-job and occurs within the stores. Off-the-job training is used for general management skills. The training at Arcadia is linked closely to developing the competencies that the company looks for in its recruits (see section 2). These competencies are enterprise related. They are essential for anyone wanting to be a successful retail manager.

The training on the Retail Management Trainee Programme includes:

  • induction training to learn about retailing and store operations
  • workshops that focus on core skills, these include team motivation and planning
  • learning about specific areas of responsibility, such as managing a store team
  • visiting stores on placements to learn about how they operate.

Successful recruits must also produce a personal development plan. This helps them prepare for their future management position.

Arcadia imageProgression on the Retail Management Trainee Programme can be rapid. A trainee can have their first management position after just one year. A typical career path is shown.

Internal recruitment is encouraged at Arcadia. The company appoints managers by promoting from within whenever it can. Internal recruitment is preferred because existing employees:

  • Know the culture of the business already; this means that they understand how the business works and already have a network of contacts so can adapt to their new role more easily.
  • Understand the business, this saves time in training.
  • Are motivated to remain with the business because of the promotion opportunities. This reduces recruitment costs because staff stay longer.

The following profiles show examples of current Arcadia employees.


Management Trainee

Troy Fairlie, Burton, Leeds Headrow

'It has been a whirlwind few months since joining Arcadia's Retail Management Trainee Programme. I now have the skills and confidence to manage the day-to-day running of the store on my own. I have also been given some important responsibilities, such as overseeing the recruitment of all the Christmas temporary staff. I managed the entire process from short listing and interviewing candidates to making the final decisions. The training programme also gives you the opportunity to attend workshops. At these workshops, you learn about the theory behind retail management. You can also discuss and share your experiences with the other trainees. A retail manager's role involves many skills - I cannot wait to develop all of these!'

Deputy Store Manager

Natasha Minty, Evans, The Plaza, London Oxford Street.

'As a Deputy Manager, my responsibilities vary on a day-to-day basis. They range from managing and training a large team of people to influencing the commercial success of the store. I have to be a multi-specialist. I am often a coach, strategist, and an accountant all in one day! As a Deputy Store Manager, you have to be people orientated. You have to enjoy interacting and influencing those around you.'

Operations Manager

Rosalyn Rasdale, Topshop Dublin St Stephens (Giga-Store).

'I am Operations Manager of one of the largest stores within Arcadia. This involves implementing operational controls and procedures, which means looking after the running of everything that goes on behind the scenes. I do this by motivating and leading my dedicated team. My responsibilities include cash and stock loss prevention, scheduling and payroll of the store team, maintenance and security of the store premises and looking after staff and customer welfare. I am involved at both ends of the retail operation. I see the product coming in in the morning and handle the cash taken from sales at the end of the night!'

Area Manager

Sarah Richardson, Miss Selfridge.

'As an Area Manager I am responsible for managing 19 stores across Scotland and the North East of England and our flagship store on Oxford Street. No two days are the same. The pace of change within the business stretches and challenges you. To be an Area Manager you need an ability to lead, inspire and develop a high calibre team. You need to look actively to exploit profit opportunities. You need good business skills and a focus on customer service.'

Arcadia | The recruitment, selection and training of people at Arcadia


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