Mentoring programme at global IT services company

Supporting global IT services company with implementing a Mentoring programme

The OCM was engaged primarily to upskill a number of leaders across the UK business who had been identified as mentors to UK graduates who were currently undertaking their graduate training programme.

This organisation had seen higher than average attrition rates of their UK graduates upon completion of their graduate training programme. The Graduate Training Team wanted to improve retention by providing greater support and mentoring for their UK graduates. 

Design

Given the technical nature of the business they were specifically looking for an accredited mentoring programme which coincided with us having just created our new ELECTRIC Mentoring programme that we were about to submit to be accredited and so we agreed that we would pilot this programme with them. It was important that they rewarded leaders who volunteered their time to be mentors with professionally recognised qualification.

Delivery

The pilot ELECTRIC Mentoring programme was delivered over a series of 3 x half day workshops as well as using a new online Learning Pathway to support the learning outside of the classroom. Each mentor trained was assigned 2 Graduates as mentees to enable them to have enough hours of mentoring conversations to satisfy the EMCC accreditation criteria. The first half day workshop consisted of helping trainee mentors to understand what mentoring was, the key skills and the different phases of mentoring. The second half day consisted of introducing them to The OCM ELECTRIC Mentoring framework and practising using it. The third and final session consisted of observed mentoring conversations, assessment and feedback. In between each of the sessions, participants had to complete a number of different learning activities via the Learning Pathway. The programme culminated with each of the participants having a telephone assessment with one of our trained assessors to confirm whether they had addressed the development needs identified for them, and demonstrated sufficient evidence of practice. All delegates passed which demonstrated the commitment by each of them. The programme from start to finish took approximately 4 months.

Review

The feedback from the ELECTRIC Mentoring pilot was really positive and as a result we submitted the programme to the EMCC to be accredited. The programme was accredited in November 2016 and each of the delegates received their individual accreditation certificates. The participants really valued the blended learning approach that this programme takes in the form of some pre-work, a session, practice and then reflection.

Impact on the business

It is still early days to know the full impact on the business and graduate attrition rates as a result of the mentoring but this organisation has scaled up its mentoring for graduates and these accredited mentors are now called “Mentoring Champions” and act as internal mentoring support/supervisors for mentors. They have also invested in one day mentor training for a larger pool of mentors to ensure there is adequate mentor cover for all graduates. The idea is to continue to invest in mentoring and ensure that all graduates have access to one as they join the organisation and as they progress in the business. Given the costs to recruit just one graduate vs. a small investment in some mentoring training it made complete sense to do this. The aim for the future is to continue to develop and upskill more mentors and build a mentoring culture across the business.