Bringing the future of learning to RBS

July 11, 2019

The challenge

RBS came to market in 2015 seeking a Managed Learning Service (MLS) provider to support circa 70,000 employees globally, with the majority of learners in UK & Ireland. Covering c.15,000 bookings in their procurement RBS identified the following priorities:

  • Service level improvements
  • Cost savings and better Return on Investment (ROI)
  • Increased learner performance
  • Improved governance and Business Intelligence (BI)

The solution

Knowledgepool were benchmarked against alternatives available in the marketplace and were chosen as the MLS partner to deliver economies of scale; consistent quality standards through centralised administration and supplier management functions; and best practice consultancy across a five-year contract.

When the contract began in 2016, we embedded two Client Partners and four Learning Officers in RBS, strategically aligned to divisions. Both roles support and influence learning, helping to align project roadmaps to learning needs, with the Client Partners focus on the larger, more strategic programmes, whilst also supporting external communications with advice and thought leadership. In addition, the Client Director provides oversight accountability and strategic direction to the whole account team to help ensure that RBS priority objectives are delivered. During 2017 the role of Learning Services Manager was added to oversee the Learning Officer roles and to ensure that SLA’s and service operations were optimised. This team collectively has been responsible for continual improvement of the bank’s key priorities:

  • Service level improvements
    • Improved processes
    • Quality management oversight
    • An independent route to the best external training suppliers
  • Cost savings and better ROI
    • Improved technology for cost efficiencies
    • Consistency and joined up approach to providing centralised learning
    • Better negotiated rates against RRP
  • Increased learner performance
    • Newer, more informal modes of learning
    • Increased learner engagement
    • More design-led approach to learning
  • Improved governance and BI
    • Visibility of bank spend on external training
    • Reporting of trends and thematic spend
    • Ability to establish approval thresholds and spend redirection

The outcome

As their MLS partner, we have worked with RBS to transform the way that they manage learning by eradicating wasted effort and focusing on service quality. To date, this has led to:

  • £4m of cost savings over the first three contract years, including:
    • Saving c£500,000 a year through efficiencies and by redirecting spend in favour of existing, internal RBS capability and capacity
    • Saving 14.7% of spend in 2018 (against 2017), despite a similar number of learning interventions, by reducing rates with preferred suppliers
  • Improvement in learner satisfaction including an NPS shift from -2 in 2017 to +50 in 2018
  • Delivery of a BI dashboard giving key stakeholders greater contract visibility, enabling self-service data discovery, and better decision making
  • Improved governance with year on year refinement of processes that enable bank to control spend approval, providing a further savings opportunity of up to £0.5M per year
  • A “Delight” framework for baselining the managed service so that both the bank and Knowledgepool can work in partnership to focus improvement initiatives and evidence continuous service maturity

The Future

Over the next 12 to 24 months, the team will focus on improving efficiency through better demand planning and improved technology. This will include:

  • Increased integration of systems – providing the learners and stakeholders with a better end-to-end service, e.g. via Workday and the new Knowledgepool booking system.
  • A joint ROI project – planning initiatives and a consolidated approach to measure value and impact of learning
  • A global learning expansion – expanding services to encompass APAC, US and Europe

Other innovations and initiatives being introduced include:

  • Access to our new Genius Programme – bringing together like-minded clients, with external speakers, to network, share best practice, and consider the future learning landscape
  • More invitations to Thought Leadership launch events and continued access to White Papers on the future of learning
  • Development of Data Science academies
  • Involvement with Learning simulations

This future-focused planning continues with the establishment of the joint working group to plan for the needs of the MLS beyond contract end in 2021.

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