Page 2: Training and development
In order for this to be successful, organisations like The Equitable Life have focused on the recruitment and training of highly able customer service employees who are trusted to take decisions themselves. These are people who will not wait to be given orders, they are intelligent and innovative enough to take suitable decisions themselves and are highly proficient in the use of Information Technology. Business writers refer to them as ‘knowledge workers’ and state that ‘intelligence is the greatest asset of the modern organisation.’ By providing good quality customer service, linked to good returns for policyholders, The Equitable Life hopes that:
- existing customers will make increased payments to the Society
- new customers will join the Society.
The Society listens to customers and shows concern for their needs. The product range reflects the needs of its policyholders and is recognised for innovation. In recent years, the Society has also introduced new IT systems and undergone organisational change to meet the service requirements of policyholders. A steady growth in new business has occurred and has brought about growth of the business as a whole.
This growth has been achieved whilst keeping expenses under control. These tables show how the Society has grown over the past 10 years and has steadily driven down costs of operation. In other words, there are more policyholders benefiting from the existence of the Society today with lower operating costs than in previous years.
Training and development are essential for all individuals working for organisations as well as for the organisation itself. The aim of training is to ensure that people can reach an appropriate level of performance in their jobs as quickly as possible. It sets out to fill the gap between what someone can do and what the business requires them to do. Training, therefore, builds up skills and knowledge to increase the competence and confidence of people in the workplace. It helps those being trained and also benefits the organisation they work for. Training can, therefore, be of great value to the organisation.
Benefits to individuals include greater skills, more knowledge, increased confidence and better career prospects. Benefits to the organisation include more productive employees, better quality work, lower absenteeism through increased job satisfaction, lower staff turnover and a greater ability to use the latest technology. A common definition of development is ‘the modification of behaviour through experience’. Development operates at all levels in an organisation from the new apprentice to the managing director. Development enables individuals to perform their existing duties better.