P&O Nedlloyd (PONL) is one of the world’s leading providers of point-to-point container shipping services. To support this core business, it also offers a range of value-added logistics services, from basic freight management to sophisticated supply chain management. In 2004, Philip Green joined PONL as the new CEO and he swiftly initiated a global staff survey which highlighted that although individuals were well trained in their own area of expertise, there was a lack of awareness and knowledge of other departments within the company. The new induction programme followed.
The challenge that PONL faced
A basic induction package had existed since 1997 when P&O merged with Nedlloyd, which comprised of basic presentation slides and a reference book.
P&O Nedlloyd’s (PONL) training department wished to create a seamless and effective programme of induction for all new and less experienced staff in order for the company to function in a more synergistic way. There was some dysfunction within the company and employees had limited understanding of what other parts of the business did, and how the departments complimented each other. There was a need for a more structured approach.
The main challenge that PONL faced was to pull together the existing induction package and develop it for use across the whole company, not limiting roll out to the head office sites in London and Rotterdam.
Elgood Effective Learning provided the solution
In order to address this huge challenge, PONL worked with Christine Elgood of Elgood Effective Learning to develop two business games which would form part of a six-stage induction programme.
Elgood Effective Learning has worked together with PONL, to develop Stages 3 and 6 of the six-stage induction programme. Stage 3, called “Starters Day” is a one-day course built around a business game in which the new employee will learn about the Shipment Management Process and at the same time, gain further insight into the whole organisation.
Stage 6, called “PONL: Our business course” is a 2.5-day course built around a business game for employees to acquire a more detailed understanding of all the Global Business Processes within PONL. Delegates attend this course after 6 months to one year of being with the company.
The benefits of the interactive business games
One of the key benefits to PONL is that the program is suitable for all levels of employee within the business, maximising the cost effectiveness of the business game. The evaluation that PONL has carried out to date has shown an increased popularity of the induction program, largely due to the way in which the business game gives employees the ‘big picture” of the whole company.
Mark Penny concludes “It is great to have a view from an external party (Christine) of how to do things. Christine has a good feel for what will work within our company. The business games are a key element of the whole induction program.”