1. What to convey in the orientation
The purpose of an orientation is to align the employees to the mission and values of the company. These programs are usually scheduled for the new recruits of the company but in the given scenario, an orientation program is required for all the individuals in the organization. The orientation program should be designed in a way that helps employees internalize the practices and procedures preferred by the Carters. Keeping the same as their primary objective, following will have to be conveyed during the orientation program.
The program must highlight the mission and values of the company. The employees must be made aware that their company strives to maximize customer satisfaction by offering superior service.
The program should cover the policies followed by the company. This will include the rules and regulations with regards compensation, leave procedure, health benefits etc. As attrition is a major concern, the exit policy should be clearly defined and communicated.
Also the program should cover the way an employee should behave while on duty. This would cover personal conduct rules with regard to smoking, using the telephone for personal calls etc. Also as most of the employees would be directly interacting with the customers, the program should also outline the expected dress code and appearance.
Roles of the employees should also be clearly stated and explained. This will ensure that each employee is aware of what is expected of him.
Performance evaluation parameters employed by the company should be specified.
How to convey the information
From the case, The Cater cleaning company seems to be a small sized company. The nature of the business, laundry service, indicates that not a large number of employees work at a central location. Lesser number of employees, job differentiation and distributed workforce calls for an on the job orientation and training program. However to ensure uniformity in the orientation effort, the program has to be well structured and documented. The documents containing the key policies of the organization and the goal of the organization should be distributed amongst the employees and also be displayed at the work area. The responsibility of the initial job orientation with the regards to the company and the policies lies with the manager. This information should be conveyed by arranging a formal meeting. The job tasks related orientation will be an ongoing process and will be handled by the peer group.
2. Use of Job Instruction Training
As per the case, the Carters expected the employees at the counter to behave in a cordial way with all customers, check the clothes for any defects, promote their upcoming offers and end with a pleasant comment when they leave. The idea was to follow a particular approach to ensure that the customers are well served. Based on this, it would be appropriate to use a procedure sheet.
1. Greet customers with a pleasant hello
2. Collect the garments from the customer
Check for existing damages or stains. If found, bring them to customer’s notice immediately. 3. Place all the garments in a nylon sack
Ensure that the customer’s clothes are not mixed with other customer’s clothes. 4. Write up a ticket for the same and provide a copy to the
customer. Ensure that the customer’s name, telephone number, date are precisely and clearly written. 5. Provide information to customer about upcoming offers and additional services Provide, up to date information with proper details.
6. Use courteous comments like “Have a nice day” when the customer leaves. None
The employees must be trained to handle unpleasant and unexpected issues. For example, in cases of complaints, each customer may have to be handled differently. This is something that cannot be put into the sheet and rather is something that needs to be encouraged to be learnt while on the job.
3. Techniques to train the employees:
Pressers/cleaner-spotters:- As these jobs are technical in nature, on the job training through coaching method could be advised. Existing employees can teach the new employees their relevant tasks and follow up with them to check if there are any concerns or problems. Also once the employee is sufficiently well versed with his/her work, job rotation can also be done to ensure that the employees develop other skills. This can be useful in times where there is shortage of employees due to reasons like illness, vacation etc wherein other employees can cover up. Job Instruction Training sheets can also be used as these jobs have a standard procedure and this would hence avoid mistakes from happening.
Managers:- On the job training can be used for managers. Their main work would include handling employees and customers along with the business. This can be learnt from the Carters and other managers. Also in case any manager is about to leave, then the apprenticeship approach can be used where in the new manager can be trained under the manager who is about to leave.
Counterperson:- Most of the tasks for included in this job are standardized, and hence job instruction sheets can be used. On the other hand, for parts of the tasks that require different behaviors for different customers, it
would be good to train via the on the job (coaching) method or the informal approach. This can be done as the employee can learn from the Carters how they should be behaving and can also go and clear any doubts with them or other senior employees when required.
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