Leyland SDM has launched an in-house training academy for its new colleagues and existing team members.
Leyland SDM has launched the fully equipped training facility in Acton, one of its central London stores. New recruits will spend five days at the academy before taking to the shopfloor, where they will hone their customer service skills and learn about the products on offer.
The academy has been setup as a replica store to ensure the new colleagues have real life experience. At a later stage, they will be back in the training academy once more, but this time to practice DIY tasks such as painting, plumbing and basic electrics so that they can offer practical advice to customers from first-hand experience to become a “local DIY expert.”
The academy is also supporting all colleagues in the business with their growth and development to support their career progression with further product, IT, personal development and management skills training.
Tony Sak, training academy lead, said: “We’re excited to be embarking on this new modern approach to training.
“There are recruitment and retention issues across the industry, as potential candidates favour other industries than painting and decorating or merchant retail. We are trying to combat that by giving our people the very best training and knowledge and provide a platform for career development.
“In the past we have used external partners for training. However, we found that, while there were many providers available for some industries, there was nothing specific for the DIY retailer.
“The only sensible solution was to create our own.”
Suppliers including PPG, which manufactures Leyland paint, Dulux, Farrow & Ball and Everbuild have already visited the academy to educate Leyland SDM colleagues on their products.
Sak added: “The specialist knowledge of our colleagues has always been an important part of our offering. Our customers really value that local expert advice.
“This move will ensure we’re giving our people all the information they need to start and progress their careers with us.”