Imperial Brands: Establishing a Consistent, Effective Global Finance Learning Solution

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Client Profile

Imperial Brands plc is a multinational consumer-goods company headquartered in Bristol, United Kingdom. A FTSE 100 company with annual revenues of over £25.2 billion (2015), its products are sold in over 160 countries.

Opportunity

Imperial Brands embarked on a strategic overhaul and transformation of its global Finance workforce. A key component of the change encompassed building stronger commercial and partnering skills across the Finance function.

Historically, Imperial Brands had no formal capability framework— finance training had been conducted primarily through live, face-to-face sessions. In line with its wider digitization activities, the company sought a new solution that would be easily accessible and consistent around the globe. Other benefits, such as improved employee engagement, succession planning and retention, were also envisaged.

Solution

As a worldwide leader in innovative learning solutions, Accenture Academy provides a blended, interactive and highly engaging learning environment. With courses that are designed to help companies achieve measurable business outcomes, highly qualified learning professionals work with organizations to keep learning plans aligned with changing strategies and business goals.

The Accenture Academy team worked with Imperial Brands’ learning leaders to define specific curriculum paths across a number of areas, including General Finance, Core Learning, Treasury and Internal Audit. The solution was configured to reflect branding, learning path and userexperience requirements.

The learning program was launched via a series of webinars and inoffice launch events. Additionally, competitive elements, including leaderboards and recognition for enthusiastic and committed learners, were introduced to spur interest and encourage engagement. Strong involvement from leadership, regular communications, webinars and group meetings helped maintain the momentum and introduced new courses and benefits. In addition, the solution was proactively embedded into workshop and group-learning activities to further bring learning to operational life.

Results

The solution was launched with significant leadership engagement and support. Learners embraced the program and have been creative in their adoption and integration of the learning in the workplace.

As a result, the company has achieved its goals of providing more relevant and agile online learning. This important benefit has now become part of their company culture. Rather than waiting for face-to-face training opportunities, employees can now learn at any time, thereby enabling them to remain relevant in their roles.

Allied to the success of the Finance training initiative, Accenture Academy also plays a significant role in providing technical skillsdevelopment support to Imperial Brands’ Procurement operations, and is part of a suite of learning solutions deployed by its HR function. The company aims to further improve collaboration through the use of curated content to share leaders’ perspectives on the current state of the business. In this way, its workforce will also evolve with the business and its changing skills requirements.

Imperial Brands is also looking to expand the Accenture Academy learning solution into other aspects of its business, in order to further support the potential for cross-functional collaboration, business agility and performance.

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