Staff from our National Housing Prime and Regional Prime contracts have recently graduated from our Career Pathway programme. Michael Parle, Lucy Johnson, Lee Williams and Michelle Brooks, from our Customer Service Centre in Speke, completed the programme after starting just over a year ago.
During their graduation they delivered a presentation on the work they’d completed whilst on the programme to a panel of senior management and their programme mentors. Of the four who graduated, three have successfully secured management positions within our Housing Repairs Helpdesk and Occupancy Services Department.
The career pathway is a one year programme where we develop our staff and offer support for Customer Service professionals who want to develop their skills and enhance their career opportunities. It’s designed to nurture our staff into tomorrows’ leaders and also, to understand those interested in becoming the future managers in our business.
It focuses on the core competencies required to be a leader, the initial process being quite rigorous and only those demonstrating ambition are invited on to the pathway. The career pathway doesn’t always guarantee a management position on graduation. However, it does better equip individuals to be considered for management positions when opportunities arise.
We are currently developing the Career Pathway Programme in order to make it better for staff undertaking it and will have some new starters on the pathway once they have been invited. Recruitment each year will be based on the Personal Development Reviews (PDR) that are conducted at the end of each year. The programme selects the top performing 5% of staff based on the scoring in their PDRs and an invite is sent out by the Customer Service Director to successful candidates in April.
Throughout the year various training modules and activities will be put together to enhance the skills and knowledge of staff participating in preparation for future management opportunities. They include projects and how to scope them, ‘step up’ opportunities, interview techniques and presentation skills and cross department training as well as a guide on management and HR policies.
Each candidate will have two mentors to help them throughout the programme. One of them will have already completed the programme and the other will be selected from the Customer Services Management Team. There are also four key review dates throughout the programme and at two of these, the candidates will need to present their progress to date to the Customer Service Director and their Heads of Customer Service.
Michael Parle, Customer Service Team Manager, said, “Being on the career pathway gave me the platform to showcase my ability to operate on a higher level. I was able to step up into management roles on the pathway, gaining the valuable experience to show I have the ability to become a team manager. It took a lot of hard work, time and effort but within 12 months of being on the programme I achieved my goal and became a team manager.”