GC Services, the oldest leading provider of teleservices and collections solutions in America, operates 36 call centers in the U.S. and one in Barbados. The company employs approximately 8,500 people. GC began a workshop-based leadership development program in 2001, drawing excellent participation from front line supervisors. To provide even greater opportunities for manager development, in 2005 GC added SkillSoft’s Business Skills and Desktop Skills courseware collections, hosted on the SkillPort LMS.
The results? Not what people expected.
Senior managers criticized the amount of time unit managers spent off the floor at workshops and complained e-learning courses took too much time. So GC’s Organizational Development staff came up with a plan to better balance workshops and e-learning. “We asked ourselves how we could take the good from the workshop program and couple it with SkillSoft courses to create a blended program,” said Linda Enger, vice president, Organizational Development.
GC’s Organizational Development team created a Leadership Learning Series. Each program in the series includes facilitated workshops, e-learning courses, and assignments. An Introductory Workshop introduces managers to the Learning Program, sets goals, and delivers assignments. A highly interactive Checkpoint Workshop helps managers apply the skills from the e-learning modules to their real work environment.
Finally, the Wrap-Up Workshop uses facilitated discussion to connect skills to the work environment. This session combines learning from all assignments, e-learning modules and discussions and wraps up each learning program.
The redesigned program has gotten great response from call centers. Enger said the staff at the centers feels like they have ownership of the learning programs—they call the Organizational Development team to ask for new learning programs or offer feedback on existing programs.
GC reported savings of more than $90,000, as well as 75% less time off the call center floor for managers. The company has lowered attrition rates in call centers where managers complete learning programs and increased employee engagement.
“Beyond looking at the number of users, people are telling us they’re using the SkillSoft courses. When we talk to our folks in the field, they’re engaged,” said Instructional Designer Patti Blasingame. “Hearing this level of excitement tells us we are on the right track—and that is incredibly rewarding.”
To learn how to create your own effective blended learning programs, register now for a complimentary webinar, Blended Learning: Critical Design Decisions, on December 14 at 11 a.m. EST.