The role of training and development in career progression
A Marks and Spencer case study

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Page 5: Benefits of training and development

Training and development brings benefits to both Marks & Spencer and its employees. Training provides a series of planned learning experiences for individuals and builds their technical skills and business competencies. Training also helps to improve efficiency and can motivate employees to do well. This helps to make positive changes to the way in which they work and make decisions. Development helps individuals use the training to meet their individual needs and ambitions. By training and developing its staff well, Marks & Spencer is in a position to develop a competitive advantageover its competitors.

Business strategy

Marks & Spencer's new business strategy focuses on three main areas:

  • Developing value-for-money products that customers want. Training and development brings new skills which help to add value to its products and services, for example by cutting costs. This enables the company to keep prices lower to benefit the customer.
  • Investing in the environment within stores. Better technical skills in sales and stock management mean that staff can use the store to better advantage resulting in higher sales and profitability.
  • Providing good customer service to look after customers. If staff have improved skills in, for example, communication, this can have a positive impact on customer service.

Training and development equips individuals with the skills they need to achieve their targeted role in the business.

Although training is a cost to a business, it is also an investment. It helps Marks & Spencer to link the people who have the right technical skills and business competencies with the roles they are best able to do. It ensures that, as a person moves from a post, he or she is succeeded by the best possible replacement. This is at the heart of succession management. By acquiring technical skills and business competencies, employees can plan their career path. This gives them responsibility for achieving their career ambitions. It also helps to create the future leaders of the organisation.

Marks and Spencer | The role of training and development in career progression