Building and retaining a talented team
Building and retaining a talented team
Recently Access Point took on Anthony Hodgson as a new member of Team AP for our till receipt advertising department. Sales teams are notoriously hard to build and retain talent in, but at Access Point 26% of our team have been with us for 10 years or longer. We take getting the best people seriously and a big part of that is making sure they have all the support and training necessary to develop their skills. But it’s retaining those people that give us such a wealth of experience at Access Point, allowing us to give the best possible service to our customers and building relationships with them that carry on beyond a sales call.
Finding the right people
It all starts with finding the right person for the right job though; Kasha our HR Manager tells us a bit about where that started with Anthony:
“I found Anthony’s CV online on one of the recruitment websites we use to source candidates. I saw that he didn’t have experience directly in sales previously, but he had plenty of transferrable skills, most importantly his CV seemed to shout to me, demand attention and show his passion. So I emailed him directly to talk about the new position we had opening, and whether it would be of interest to him. He was employed elsewhere at the time, but he’d heard of the company, spoke to people who knew people, looked through our website, and decided he wanted to pursue it”
From there Anthony attended an interview with Kasha and Adam Hanford our Till Receipt Sales Manager:
“Adam, what’s the process that brings a person from seeing their CV to coming for an interview?”
“After screening CVs, Kasha and I decide who we would like to bring in for a role play exercise with Mike Ashley, he’s one of our senior sales people with a huge amount of experience in the industry; he knows what to look for in a new candidate. If the role play goes well, we bring them for an interview straightaway, but if they fall down he offers them some coaching on where to improve and we organise a second role play with myself. If they’ve implemented the changes, we know they’re willing to listen and learn, and that’s the most important thing for us”
“What do you look for in an interviewee?”
“The first things we look for are their drive, determination and character. They’ve got to be a good fit for the team and the company; most importantly they’ve got to bring their whole self to the company. That means bringing everything they have, their whole personality, their drive, their passions.”
Training and Development
"How does the training work?"
“We do an initial two weeks of training with a new team member, training them on the product, on how we work, on our processes. This also gives them time to get used to the Access Point culture, and get to know other people in the company. That way they know who to go to for advice, who to bounce ideas off and who can be relied on to have a chocolate fix in their drawer. But it’s an on going process, whether you’ve been here for a month or ten years, they will always spend time listening to calls, getting training from people with expertise in different industries, even shadowing people in different departments so they get a feel for the whole business and how we all work together”
Retaining the best
But what makes them stick around? Like all good sales companies, Access Point rewards our staff for their work, but it’s far from all being about the pay slip. At Access Point we value each and every staff member, and we make sure to show them in as many ways as possible. We don’t just celebrate birthdays with a cake here, we celebrate people’s work anniversary with something specifically for them. In the past, we’ve had Rock Days, the hall of fame, and woman vs. food challenges.
We also encourage staff to take an active part in leading the company forward with department meetings being led by members of the team. We encourage all our staff to look at the big picture, work on things that no one’s tried before, finding new value for our clients and new opportunities for our retailers every day, and that’s reflected in our meetings that have covered everything from Fish philosophy to murder mystery games.
On top of that, we offer an in-house reward scheme that can be redeemed as extra days off, spa days, cocktail making classes, and just about anything else you can think of.
But it’s building a family where Access Point really excels; we organise days out at gokarting, parties on the roof, office games, organise charity fundraising, and do everything we can to make sure our staff know they’re valued and part of a team.
You can see it every day on your LinkedIn feed, motivational quotes and pictures about the importance of your staff and what they can do for you if you work hard for them. But at Access Point we don’t just believe it; we do our best to make it happen every day.
“Access Point has a superb working atmosphere generated by a well integrated, cohesive team that I am very much looking forward to being a part of”
Access Point is currently recruiting, to find out more visit our recruitment page or join us for our open day on the 8th July
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