Xchanging Award for Excellence in Training

Award profile

This award recognises training interventions that have significantly benefited the organisation, particularly if the trainers developed new approaches. The judge looked for evidence of improved performance and gains in employee skills and capabilities. Teams were expected to show how training has boosted motivation and helped focus staff on key organisation objectives.

Crown Prosecution Service (CPS)

The team – HR team: Learning & Development team
No. in team: 30
No. in HR function: 60
No. of employees HR is responsible for: 7,700

About the organisation

The CPS is the public body responsible for prosecuting criminal suspects in England and Wales.

The challenge

To introduce and implement far-reaching and innovative development schemes to ensure employees at all levels can benefit and grow personally and professionally.

What the organisation did



  • Set up a Law Scholarship Scheme (with £1.4m government support) to give more people access to a legal career
  • Launched a Prosecution College offering specialised online training for prosecutors
  • Introduced Higher Court Advocacy (HCA) Training to ensure CPS solicitors and barristers can prosecute to the highest standards
  • Produced a CD-Rom to ensure con-sistency in the induction process.

Benefits and achievements



  • More than 300 people have taken part in the Law Scholarship Scheme – 70% are women and 40% from ethnic minorities
  • The HCA training has benefited more than 700 lawyers, helping them achieve their ambitions to appear in Crown Court
  • Staff satisfaction has increased to 50% in 2004, up from 32% two years earlier.

Category judge Sarah Jones says: “CPS provides a range of innovative development opportunities to stretch and maximise potential and create significant business benefits. Cleverly entering into key partnership arrangements and adopting a range of delivery mediums, it is now growing its own talent, resulting in increased levels of employee satisfaction and significant savings on the public purse.”

Tube Lines

The team – Leadership Development
No. in team: 2
No. in HR function: 50
No. of employees HR is responsible for: 3,000

About the organisation

Tube Lines was formed three years ago as part of the public-private partnership created to maintain the London Underground (LU). It is responsible for maintaining, renewing and upgrading the Jubilee, Northern and Piccadilly lines.

The challenge

Many leaders within the organisation transferred from the publicly-owned LU, while others came from commercial shareholders. The chief executive identified a need to create a single direction with clear goals and values.

What the organisation did



  • Devised the Leading Change training programme to equip 700 managers for that change
  • Achieved active sponsorship by the CEO, who sent a letter to every delegate, while one of the board members opened the programme
  • Created a ‘sandwich’ approach to individual development, starting with expectations, then 360-degree feedback on performance against expectations, and finally leadership competencies.

Benefits and achievements



  • Leaders now have a clear purpose and direction
  • They understand their individual and team contribution to the organisation’s goals
  • Internally, Tube Lines is working towards a single vision.

Category judge Sarah Jones says: “With a focus on meeting the high expectations of key stakeholders, this leading-edge change programme ensures there are significant benefits for the organisation, the teams and the individuals. Top management buy-in is clearly demonstrated through active involvement both personally and in leading the roll-out programme.”

Broadway Homelessness and Support

The team – Human Resources
No. in team: 6
No. in HR function: 6
No. of employees HR is responsible for: 180

About the organisation

Broadway Homelessness and Support is a London-based homeless charity that works with 2,000 homeless and vulnerable people every year. It has 180 staff and 70 volunteers. It was created two years ago after the merger of homeless agencies Riverpoint and Housing Services Agency.

The challenge

To create consistent policies and practices to support a best practice management culture post-merger.

What the organisation did



  • Introduced competency-based recruitment and 360-degree appraisals for all staff
  • Devised a management development programme and provided coaching for senior managers
  • Recruited a training and development manager
  • Established a cost-effective blended approach, using internal training and external providers.

Benefits and achievements



  • The vacancy rate has reduced from 20% to less than 2% over the past three years
  • Voluntary staff turnover has dropped from 23% to 15.4%
  • 91% of staff said Broadway was committed to staff training and development, and 86% had confidence in their line manager
  • Sickness absence is down from 8.8 days in 2002-03 to 6.1 days.

Category judge Sarah Jones says: “A significant reduction in staff turnover, high levels of customer satisfaction and increased financial turnover are some of the benefits resulting from the vision of the CEO and HR director. They have invested time and resources to embed a strong performance management culture while maintaining core values of being personal, adaptable and committed.”

BBC

The team – BBC Leadership Programme
No. in team: 70
No. in HR function: 1,000
No. of employees HR is responsible for: 27,000

About the organisation

The British Broadcasting Corporation is a broadcaster funded by TV licence-payers.

The challenge

The BBC had experienced the Hutton report, lost its director general and chairman, and pledged to make savings of £355m (which meant 3,780 job cuts). As a result of Greg Dyke’s One BBC – Making it Happen internal communications strategy, staff said they wanted better managers and a better relationship with them – identifying a need for the BBC to develop its leaders.

What the organisation did



  • Partnered with Ashridge business school to design, deliver and manage the BBC Leadership Programme
  • Launched the programme in September 2003 with the aim of training the BBC’s top 6,000 leaders within five years
  • Created a practical, blended learning approach to develop the leadership skills defined by 10,000 BBC staff.

Benefits and achievements



  • In a survey in November 2004, 80% of leaders said they had changed the way they managed their employees
  • 66% felt they are more effective when reacting to changes in the workplace
  • 66% felt they were better at developing people.

Category judge Sarah Jones says: “Having gone through significant change, the One BBC – Making it Happen culture change programme really produced results. By listening to its people it was able to define the essential qualities of leadership that would make a difference to the people and the business.”

Xchanging delivers a world-class, integrated and seamless managed service for all HR needs by taking the administrative headache away from line managers, employees, HR and procurement professionals.

Category judge: Sarah Jones, chief executive, Ufi/learndirect
Jones became CEO of Ufi in January 2005 after an extensive career at BAE Systems. In 2002, she was appointed business unit director of a division of RO Defence.

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