In line with its strong learning and development culture, the respected accountancy firm KPMG pursues a proactive staff training policy. KPMG has chosen the MEDIAplus eLearning solution from ENI to train its people in the use of office software applications.
Present in over 157 countries, KPMG is an accountancy, audit and advisory firm with 7000 employees in France, organised into two specialist departments. KPMG Enterprises has a staff of 5000 based in 180 offices throughout France.
By the nature of its business, KPMG has a strong culture of learning. Over 7.5% of the total wage figure is dedicated to training, with each employee enjoying an average of 4 to 5 days' training per year. Staff members are expected to stay-up-to date with the constant legislation changes. KPMG offer their staff induction and regular job-specific training, as well as skill-building programmes.
Given this background, no sooner was the DIF law passed in France than KPMG took the decision to implement it. The DIF (Individual Training Entitlement) is a French government measure by which every employee is entitled to 20h training per year, financed by the employer. "We thought straight off that the DIF was a good idea, because we see training as a vital investment," confirms Richard Chaulet, Head of Training at KPMG Enterprises.
As early as May 2005, KPMG signed an agreement with the unions setting out how the DIF would be implemented at KPMG. "We had several reasons for wanting to introduce this measure quickly. In the first place, we realised that training could take place during working hours, since we are a service-sector company and our people have periods of free time that they can use for training." explains Richard Chaulet. "Next, we found out what type of training was available under the DIF. It is mainly linked to skills development and, for our technical staff, this includes office software skills" he adds.
KPMG chose ENI's MEDIAplus eLearning system to provide training in desktop applications. "The e-learning method is particularly well suited to software application training, because it allows the learner to progress at his or her own speed and also because the programme can be adapted to the skills level and requirements of the individual," considers Richard Chaulet. "The MEDIAplus eLearning solution has a major advantage over other systems: it exploits the application's own environment. This is something our users appreciate," he indicates.
Working from his or her usual computer, the learner has access to online tutoring. ENI deals with the formalities involved in taking up the DIF.
"To make a success of training by the e-learning method, learners must be determined to set aside time for it. It is easy to get caught up in the day's activities" explains Richard Chaulet. "While it is true that e-learning reduces or eliminates the time needed to move from work to training, there is still the challenge of keeping an appointment with oneself," he concludes.
KPMG has a set period for receiving DIF applications. It coincides with the employees' annual appraisals. A number of communication campaigns have been run to inform people of their rights under the DIF. Meetings have been organised throughout France with key Human Resources executives visiting regional offices, information on the Intranet, and e-mails sent out regularly to let individual employees know how many days are due to them.
With between 2000 and 3000 training days per year allocated under the DIF, the measure rates as a definite success for KPMG.
KPMG has even been presented with a special prize from the DIF Awards panel for its excellent rate of access to the DIF, which stands at over 90%.
"We think that the DIF is a great opportunity for our people and for the company. It is a measure which empowers the employee," concludes M Chaulet.