Lloyds Case Study: A successful large-scale language training programme that saw Cactus implement training in Spanish and English at Lloyds Spain headquarters and 11 of the bank’s branches across Spain.
Cactus has been providing in-company language training for Lloyds Spain since November 2011. Language learning has been both a staff benefit and an indispensable requirement for their business. With English customers and English roots, communication between departments and development of the different sectors of the global Lloyds group is dependent on employees being able to speak English.
As an English bank located in Spain, tuition was required in both English and Spanish in 11 locations across Spain, from the bank’s headquarters in Madrid to branches in Marbella, Puerto Banús, Fuengirola, Alicante, Mallorca, Murcia, Pamplona, Valencia and Barcelona. The minimum language level required for all employees was C1 (advanced level according to the Common European Framework), whilst those in direct contact with clients needed to reach C2 (mastery or proficiency).
Cactus implemented the required language classes by listening to the specific needs of Lloyds Spain and devising closed group language classes in each of the required locations. With our vast network of professional, native speaker teachers, many of whom boast specific knowledge and experience within the financial industry, Cactus was able to provide bespoke tuition in a flexible and convenient setting. Our remit was to ensure a solid grammatical base and good written skills, with most importance placed on reaching fluency in the spoken language and gaining confidence to speak in any situation.
The closed group language lessons have been effective in helping the business grow and succeed. Feedback from employees has been extremely positive. Students feel very close to their allocated teachers and motivated by their passion with teaching. Each time they re-initiate a round of training, there are many voluntary requests for language training, over and above those that are required by the business, reflecting the desire as well as the need to continue learning.
I asked Sandy whether language training had been a good use of funds for Lloyds Spain and she said that without a doubt, for them it had been.
She was quick to recommend direct contact with Cactus for any language training requirements, citing our efficiency, our ability to find the right teachers and our flexibility in dealing with a company such as theirs undergoing continual change. She also praised the friendliness of all our representatives, highlighting the huge work effort, dedication and professionalism of our team.
I was keen to know whether, with her experience of organising corporate language tuition across such a vast number of locations, Sandy had any advice to offer other companies considering offering the same. She said that Cactus had made it very easy to set up a language training programme across 11 locations, knowing how to adapt to the many different offices, locations and training requirements. For their part, Lloyds has always tried to provide clear and accurate information about each office and the particular staff involved, so collaboration on both sides has facilitated the smooth running of a large scale language training programme.
As for what the future holds, Lloyds Spain now forms part of the Banco Sabadell group, and Sandy tells me that they hope to still receive a solid training programme. Although English language training will not be as crucial as it has been at Lloyds, the banking world will always require a certain level of English language knowledge and, certainly as far as Cactus are concerned, we would happily continue to provide this for more years to come.
Many thanks to Sandy for taking the time to talk to us.
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