Ahmedabad, August 06, 2019: Once a luxury, WhatsApp now has become a necessity for everyday functioning. Apart from ‘Good Morning‘ messages, people now use it to exchange notes and necessary information. But it still has been restricted to personal use. In one of its kind, an organization has started using WhatsApp as an official platform to connect with their employees and use it as a training tool for their workforce.

The Learning and Development (L&D) team of Cadila Pharmaceuticals began its training program in January, 2019. The objective of the training is to build customer-centric capabilities of its diversified field force using new-age learning tools. The company adopted a mix of classroom teaching and e-learning using WhatsApp as a tool to ensure the application of the key learnings.

The training programme was initiated with a face-to-face conversation in January, when the L&D team trained 1,999 employees across 13 locations in ten days. For the remainder of the training programme, 15 WhatsApp Groups were created by the company’s seven Human Resources and L&D teams. It was followed by a weekly campaign of selfies, audio and video clips to ensure application of the learning, which included grooming, interpersonal skills, and communication.

“We observed 40% adoption among our colleagues, which is higher than the standard 20-25% usually seen in e-learning,” the pharma major said in a statement. The participants were tracked on a weekly basis by the L&D teams, and the top 5 scorers, ranked on the basis of consistency, quality, and active participation sans reminders, were rewarded in the second Face-to-Face meeting.

Following the success of the first phase of training, the company began the second intervention, aimed at knowing the customer well, in April. This time, 1,842 employees across 12 locations were selected. Another 275 employees were trained through Zoom webinars. The training was followed by weekly WhatsApp campaigns and tracking. In a bid to make the training outcome-oriented, and to facilitate better learning, success stories for customer conversion were also included in the weekly campaigns.

Cadila has planned the third intervention in July, which it says would be aimed at training employees on connecting better with customers. It aims to cover 2,300 employees across seven locations in six days for the latest intervention.

This will be followed by on-the-job coaching by managers, while the WhatsApp campaign will be continued till the year-end,” the company added.

In the world where more and more advanced programs are being created for the employees, using a simple platform such as WhatsApp is a brilliant idea. With almost no capital or financial investment, Cadila Pharmaceuticals set a perfect example of ‘out of the box thinking’.

Corporate Comm India (CCI Newswire)

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