Leasing Options is a Salford-based car and van leasing company aimed at both business and private users.
The company identified the need to overhaul its HR procedures and people management strategies which would in turn support an evolving employee-focused culture.
While the company’s senior management team (SMT) were experienced in operational management, they were keen to enhance and overhaul their people management strategies.
Leasing Options had originally been referred to the Hub in 2015 as part of the Executive Development Programme, with Sales Director, Andy Houston among members of the SMT to complete the course which matches businesses with a specialist to develop leadership skills across multiple key business areas.
Such was the success of the programme, which led to an increase in profits and allowed the business to take on 12 new employees, that the Hub invited Leasing Options to become the first company to access its new Workforce Development Programme (WFD).
The process is facilitated by one of the Hub’s dedicated workforce development advisors and begins with an in-depth assessment of the business’s organisational structure, helping to identify areas for improvement and ways in which investing in the workforce can help the business to grow.
This then led to a blueprint for the future which covered everything from employee induction to succession planning, job descriptions training. There was also an emphasis on the roles, responsibilities and communication strategies of the SMT, who also attended a masterclass on aligning goals and targets to the company’s business plan.
“The programme leaves few stones unturned,” explains Andy. “It’s a tailored package of support that has revolutionised people management within the business and been a huge boost for employee morale and company turnover.”
Since the WFD support began the business has recruited 10 new employees, along with two new apprentices, with nearly all the new employees coming from either Worsley itself or from other parts of Salford.
One of the apprentices taken on last year, Conor Hill, has already secured a full-time role with the company as a finance administrator.
Connor, from Worsley, said: “I’ve always wanted a job involving cars and here I get to work with a fleet of thousands of top quality vehicles from the world’s best manufacturers. The job is also just a few minutes from where I was born and brought up, and the atmosphere throughout the company is friendly and positive.
“I’m really grateful to Leasing Options for giving me an opportunity to develop a career through the apprenticeship route, and I’ve had lots of support and encouragement along the way from everyone.”
Communication strategies throughout the business have also improved, leading to an increase in employee motivation and performance. The business has also refocused activity and redefined sales process, increasing the capacity for the front line sales personnel and introducing new company-wide employee training.
Processes have been streamlined and re-defined, and as part of this process a gap was identified which has resulted in new pricing analysis roles being created, allowing the SMT team to concentrate on more strategic growth and development.
“WFD is for businesses who want to explore ways of growing by developing their people, across all levels of the organisation,” explains the Hub’s Janine Richardson.
“Previously Leasing Options hadn’t undertaken any structured people development or thought about growing their own talent by taking on an apprentice. But now that’s all changed.”
And Andy adds: “We’re looking to continue to develop and increase our market share but our bigger goal is to become the employer of choice within the sector, and a business that offers a dynamic, supportive and people-centred place to work.”
Leasing Options, which recently became a major sponsor of Lancashire County Cricket Club, is now exploring working to recognised quality standards to drive further development and growth − and will continue to work with the Hub to help improve and expand its business going forward.
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