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Training & Development

The Best Bank in Singapore(DBS)
The Fortune Best Company to Work FOR
Executive Summary
Can you guess one common thing between?

Victorious Army and Soccer champions

Most of us will answer as “Victory” or “energy” or “desire and drive”. Have you ever
seen an army winning battles without training or soccer teams without practice? The reality
is that both of them undergo significant training and development to emerge victorious. The
trainings these teams undergo are not only rigorous but also strategic these days.

Let’s look at Brazil soccer team for instance. They have talented players, but what
makes them unique is their playing style. In 1970’s they used to play with their samba style
which provides them speed and precision to score and win matches. But if you look at the
same team today, they train themselves to strategize and plan. In today’s new age
strategic trainings are provided to excel in all kind of situations. This concept of new learning
and development are prevalent in the large and medium sized corporate houses.

Employees in the 21st century face different kind of challenges. Strong and Niche
competitions, Economic downturns, war etc… Modern training and development has taken a
huge leap forward to make the employees successful. Trainings can never be a topic of
ignorance or irrelevant these days. For every organization to be on top of their game,
Training and Development will play a major role. Human Resources will have a significant
role in molding the organization with the right trainings and development path.



DBS is one of the largest financial services groups in Asia with operations in 16 markets.
Listed on the Singapore Exchange (SGX), the bank’s asset quality is one of the best in Asia
and its “AA-“ and “Aa1” credit ratings are among the highest in the region.


DBS management is committed to minimum five training days or 40 hours for each staff.

The top management set this requirement as part of the managers’ KPIs. DBS spent about

1.0% or S$900 of staff expenses on training for year 2008. This is better than the benchmark



Three key principles decide the way DBS approaches human resource development:
• Personal development and career management are increasingly placed in the hands

of the individual.

• Greater recognition that functional/technical skills build the professional (what you

are) while behavioral/life skills build the person (who you are).

• Competence-based development and competence-based progression using global

minimum standards and processes, which take into consideration performance and

local requirements, will increasingly characterize the way we address human

resource planning and development.



The following depicts the possible scenarios that DBS face:

Still Committed to 5 days staff training.

Budget cuts/constraints Utilizes Govt. Subsidies

Ex. SDF grant, SPUR , PCP etc, DBS

More workers are flooding the market during Spend time & money in selection of good
retrenchment candidates & training them.
Work load brings staff morale down. Stress
management & team work are implemented with
Staff morale issues programs like productivity 101.


1. We are Best Employee / Best Place to work

Success metrics: Q12 (Annual Gallup Survey), Global HR Surveys, Quarterly
Staff Surveys etc)

2. Our brand is top 5 in every country we operate in
Success metrics: CE11 (Customer Engagement Survey), Brand Health
Monitoring, Competitive tracking, Newspapers, etc

3. Invest in technology and encourage cross training and teamwork which

increase in productivity

Success metrics: Less Overtime, less errors, increase turnaround time etc

4. Improve morale and performance

Success metrics: Less staff turnover, less complain, better engagement scores

5. World’s 50 Safest Banks 2009

Success metrics: Global Finance


• Continued emphasis on e-learning as a learning.

• The bank also posts the e-learning solutions on the learning portal for convenient

access by the staff.

• DBS is investing in technology to enable more spore and regional offices with video

conferencing capability to enhance the learning experience and to promote

interaction and sharing among the diversified staff.

• More emphasis on case study and role-play to increase learning.


DBS has a structured learning and development program. Despite the tough times, DBS will

still continue to focus on training and people development. In fact, improve Q12 employee

engagement score, reduce staff turnover, success of talent management and increase staff
training (training days per staff > 5days) are set as part of the managers’ KPIs for year


DBS implements a five–step development process during the performance management for

each staff. This is a good model as it is clear and definite and it can be implemented to all

subsidiaries and overseas offices. Performance gaps are met by training. DBS structures its

training program with focus on execution, customer and culture to meet its business

objectives in this challenging time.

With the endeavors to keep costs down, DBS performs needs assessment involving

organizational, task and person analysis, to decide when training is necessary. Objectives

are set for each training and their effectiveness are measured in terms of increased

productivity, less staff turnover, satisfaction survey, and accolades.

DBS is proactive in this challenging environment by revamping the organization structure,

streamlining staff force, creating new job opportunities and developing the human capital.

We believe DBS is able to weather this financial storm and stands out to be Asia most

respected and admired bank.

Netapp(Fortune Best company to work for 2009)

NetApp is one of the dynamic and fastest growing companies in the 21stcentury. Headquartered in
California, USA they focus on bringing innovative storage solutions and data management solutions to
large enterprise customers. In short if you ever wonder where Yahoo and Google store all their data, it
is on NetApp storage devices. NetApp was founded in 1992 and now with around 8000 employees
worldwide. They are known as a unique company and customers like their “go beyond” approach. For
last 8 years they are rated among the “best companies to work for” on the planet with $4 Billion in

In 2009, they achieved a unique distinction of being the best company to work for toppling even big
names such as Google, Microsoft and P&G. Much of their successes are due to their unique culture,
leadership and teamwork.

What is the reason for Netapp to be the best company to work for?

There is no single logical reason on why we are the best employer. I think it is the great leadership that
put us on the top. The Leadership in NetApp is unique that allows every NetApp employee to provide
valuable inputs. Every employee in NetApp understands what the company visions and goals are and
work towards it as if it’s their own. The Training Is aligned with the company’s strategy. For example, a
customer problem in the USA will be immediately helped by Singapore team once they know about it.
It’s phenomenal when all the 8000 employees rally around to make the company’s goals possible. The
key to success is also making every employee feel important and successful. NetApp has unique
rewards by which you can take volunteer time off to help charity organization and schools. How many
companies provide every employee with direct access to the founders, CEO, CTO and president? I think
NetApp takes pride in doing that.

Training & Development in Netapp

• Our communication programs include T.O.A.S.T. (Training on All Special Things), our innovative
new-hire orientation with top NetApp executives.
• NetApp provides professional development through NetApp University.

What is T.O.A.S.T?

T.O.A.S.T. is NetApp's unique one-day orientation program designed to help all new employees
learn about the culture, values, strategy, organization, and norms of NetApp. Once you register,
this program also provides the opportunity to meet a number of the top leaders—including the
CEO, President, and Founders. The day includes presentations, lunch, and a Q&A session with top
executives. Participants also have the opportunity to build networks with colleagues from around
the world.

The name T.O.A.S.T. is steeped in culture and reflects employee input into our key programs. A
company-wide naming contest was held when the program first started in the mid-90s. NetApp
products at that time were considered appliances, and we'd used the symbol of a toaster to
underscore the simplicity, speed, and reliability of our products. T.O.A.S.T. was the employee
favorite, and the name has stuck ever since.

Today, T.O.A.S.T. supports new employees in providing:
• An overview of NetApp

• An understanding of NetApp's values and culture
• An overview of key strategies in functional groups:
○ Business Operations & Manufacturing
○ Global Services
○ Engineering
○ Finance
○ G&A
○ Marketing
○ Sales
• Clarification of key corporate challenges/opportunities
• Opportunity to meet and network with other NetApp employees, and to interact with company

Based on employee feedback over the past eight years, we believe this program is one of the
most distinctive, effective communication vehicles anywhere. It is the first in a continuum of
communication programs the company sponsors—not only to keep employees informed of issues
that concern them, but also to model the values on which NetApp's business practices are based.
As a complement to the T.O.A.S.T. program, many departments and remote offices offer their own
customized versions of T.O.A.S.T.

Professional Management and Leadership Development at NetApp

The professional and personal growth of our employees is a top priority at NetApp. Such
development is a key component of our objective to "Create a Model Company." This objective
includes our commitment to "attracting and retaining performance-oriented employees who
thrive in a challenging, supportive environment and are recognized and rewarded for their
achievements and contributions."

NetApp believes that we owe our employees the opportunity to maximize their contribution to
success—both professionally and personally. The company also affirms that individuals own their
own development. Therefore, we encourage an active, ongoing partnership between employees
and their managers.

Our curriculum includes the following areas:
1. Professional Development for All Employees
2. Management and Leadership Development
3. Engineering Education
4. Sales and Business Education
5. Technical Education

Functional responsibility for professional development at NetApp is shared among two
1. NetApp University ("NetAppU")—serving the business-driven learning needs for the company
and our customers .NetApp University, a division that takes care of Training needs in the
organization. NetApp University ensures that the curriculum is up-to-date
2. The Learning & Development Department within Human Resources—which coordinates all
non-technical training programs for managers and employees.

We encourage all employees to take advantage of the many opportunities NetApp provides for
your professional and personal development.

Training & Development during Recession

Training and development is very important for NetApp irrespective of the economic
situations. We could probably say that training becomes even more relevant during
tough economic conditions. You need your employees to be in their top of the game at
such tough conditions to be successful.

Trainings are affected by two major components in recessions.


Most of employee has slightly more time available during recession and in NetApp we
use this additional time to effectively train them.

During recessions, the budget is limited, but the scope of E-Learning increases.
NetApp has signed up for E-Learning with Harvard and other top institutes for E-
Learning assignments.

No matter what the economic conditions, for NetApp Training and development is the
key to success.

Attracting & Retaining Talents Through training & knowledge sharing At Netapp:

NetApp is a special place for people who what to achieve special things. When we hire an employee
and send them for TOAST, the employee understands what his goals are for the organization. Only
those who feel that they can be a part of this great team will continue in NetApp. Being a top data
management company attracts a lot of special talents. NetApp grooms them to be a leader on their
own and adds in the culture flavor in them. Fantastic reward system is in place to ensure
encouragement for knowledge sharing and teamwork. NetApp problem solving skills even remove
geographical boundaries and imbibe NetApp culture in them.

NetApp leadership goes by the rule of “Catch someone doing something right” in sending appreciation
note or phone calls. Imagine a Fortune 1000 top company CEO calling you and appreciating for good
work done. It makes a special place to work for really.

Type of Learning Techniques at Netapp:

• Orientation Training (T.O.A.S.T)
• Fast track learning to provide all technical info (Fastrack 101,102)
• E-learning (In collaboration with Harvard)
• OJT (For technical consultants)
• Brown Bag Sessions
• All Hands meeting for knowledge sharing.

NetApp case study proves that a successful company needs the right training and
development always despite market conditions. It also shows that how a top
company in the world makes their employees feel so special and Human Resources
are vital to make these dreams a reality. NetApp spends almost 3% of revenue on
Training and development even during recessions.