Assessment Services Help Customer Set the Stage for Business Transformation
Orange Business Services
Orange Business Services is a leading worldwide provider of telecommunication services to multinational companies. It provides managed services, including IP VPN (MPLS) networks, WANs, LANs, security, mobility, voice, and video, to clients in over 220 countries and territories.
Managers' Business Skills Fall Short
Putting the customer first is important in any service-oriented business. For Orange, with its focus on international telecommunications services, customer-first mentality is paramount. The company had established an Information Technology Service Management (ITSM) framework and used ITSM to improve its customer focus and IT efficiency. Orange's Customer Service Managers (CSMs), who had day-to-day interaction with their clients, had varying levels of customer service and IT skills and familiarity with the ITSM framework. Generally, CSMs were very technologically astute, but they needed to develop better business skills so they could be transformed into Customer Service Directors (CSDs).
Terry Coleman, Orange's Head of North American Markets Customer Focus team, was responsible for this transformation. He needed to analyze the CSM, CSD, and Virtual Private Network Owner (VPO) roles within the context of Orange's existing ITSM framework, review the existing competency requirements and identify the skills gaps within the positions. Once he completed those tasks, he could begin to develop CSMs, CSDs, and VPOs at junior, senior, and executive levels. Coleman was familiar with Global Knowledge as an IT training company, having taken Cisco training from us, but he was surprised to discover that our extensive enterprise solutions experience. "I was convinced that Global Knowledge could meet our needs," Coleman explained. "Their attentiveness and the effort and quick turnarounds that went into their deliverables gave me the confidence that they could step up to the plate and tackle any challenge we had."
Global Knowledge SOLVE™ Methodology and ITIL® v3
Orange requested that the evaluation use the service life cycle stages and process areas as defined by the IT Infrastructure Library™ version 3 (ITIL v3). We measured Orange's ITIL v3 process competencies using our SOLVE (Surround, Originate, Launch, Validate, and Evolve) methodology, which enabled a consistent and effective professional development program to fit the individual CSMs' needs.
Our Program Manager was responsible for the overall satisfaction and success of the CSD development program and the Orange business relationship. The Program Manager handled all Global Knowledge resources assigned to the assessment, development, and delivery of the solution, along with any other tasks necessary to complete delivery on time and within budget.
We began the program by conducting a comprehensive assessment of the CSD candidates, with Orange determining the roles, exact skill sets, and competencies the CSM and CSD job roles required. This assessment produced a skills-gap report on each individual with recommendations on interventions to further help develop the CSMs into CSDs.
We established the competencies required by the roles of the CSD, CSM, and VPOs as they related to both the ITSM framework and business skills by conducting extensive interviews with Orange's leadership and key individuals within those job roles and by reviewing ISO documentation on ITSM methodology and HR job descriptions.
Our Subject Matter Expert (SME) worked with Orange to build a customized individual assessment tool, so individuals could identify their strengths and weaknesses. Orange's management could see the competency and skills gaps for each individual. The Program Manager then provided a summary of findings, root causes, and recommendations, revealing individual and group strengths and weaknesses in each competency. Global Knowledge mapped all of the competencies for each role to training interventions, which provided a targeted development plan for each individual.
Terry Coleman explained, "We had a few scope changes and Global Knowledge was agile enough to meet those scope changes with just a nod of the head. It wasn't a problem for them to help us out." Coleman went on to commend our approach to the project. "With the Global Knowledge Program Manager and Subject Matter Expert leading the project, it was great to see how they took the time to first understand our business and learning needs before they began working on a recommended solution."
Custom Assessments of Individual Roles
The six-month assessment project was successful and resulted in:
- Defining and validating the CSM, CSD, and VPO job roles for both ITSM and business skills
- A report of organizational obstacles to higher performance and recommendations for removing those obstacles
- A measure of the skills gaps by competency for each individual
- Identifying training necessary to address the skills gaps