As soon as we see the light of day, we already start with it and in the best case never stop again. We talk about learning. Whereas in the past the biggest hurdle was to make knowledge accessible, today the challenge is to identify the best for oneself out of the broad range of educational opportunities. We went on a learning journey through the countries of our A1 footprint and found out a lot about motivation and learning methods.
The advancing digitalization and the new possibilities that modern technologies bring along are developments that apply to many areas of our lives, not least in the way we learn today. More than ever, a holistic and integrative approach that goes beyond traditional training formats is needed. Learning is to be seen as part of the daily job and happens besides formal formats like training and eLearning mainly on the job through research, trying out new things or the exchange and collaboration with experts or experienced colleagues (social learning). This is why the focus of the A1 Group’s Learning & Development Team has shifted in recent years: whereas in the past, the team was primarily concerned with preparing training content, today it sees itself much more as a facilitator and companion in change processes. In addition to classic tasks such as making knowledge (increasingly digital) accessible, this includes above all accompanying sustainable behavioral change in accordance with corporate goals.
»Learning and personal development cannot be delegated, we all have to do it ourselves and take ownership of our individual learning journey. We as HR help by providing tools and methods.«
Eva Zehetner, A1 Group Director Human Resources
What fits for me?
Today, there are hardly any training courses based on the principle of unity. The diversity of the digitalized world is also reflected in the learning landscape. The Internet, online platforms, but also webinars or books – learners can draw on the full range of possibilities and almost all formats are designed for different target groups and levels of knowledge. The only thing left to do is to find the right one for oneself. But how? Once again, artificial intelligence is used. At A1, skill matching tools have been tested several times in pilot projects. Depending on the participants’ interests and existing skills, these tools help them match the job profiles they are looking for. The system recognizes possible deficits and immediately suggests suitable learning content. A1 eCampus currently offers 2,830 digital course formats in many languages, which are available to all of A1’s approximately 18,000 employees. However, the consumption of knowledge alone is not enough. From agile working methods we have learned how important retrospectives, i.e., reviews, are. From today’s point of view, an open discussion of acquired know-how and its targeted application in practice, as well as the transfer of knowledge, is the best way to ensure a successful and sustainable learning journey.
We asked one questions in the A1 team to get more insights: Why do you enjoy learning? Here are the different answers:
The large number of different local learning campaigns also shows the importance of learning at A1. Whether playful or fact-based, the goal is the same everywhere: to make individual skill development as easy as possible. #MakeItHappen
A1 Bulgaria: (Virtual) Knowledge Club
A1 Bulgaria has been having its internal Knowledge Club for years now. As part of it, employees from the company share their expertise on business-related topics with other colleagues. Along with other transformations of the past months, we transformed our Knowledge Club into Virtual Knowledge Club on March 16th 2020. This step allowed us to expand the scope of the Club organizing more classes and involving more colleagues. So far, we had over 340 sessions on 39 topics led by 30 trainers achieving nearly 5,500 participations. The top 3 topics with highest interest are Excel, DISC – Main Behavioral Styles and Time Management. Emil, who you have met earlier in our A1 Story, is one of our trainers on “Mobile network & Services” and “Mobile Technology: LTE/EPC, VoLTE & VoWiFi” with a passion not only to learn, but also to teach.
A1 Macedonia – 50K Learning Challenge
The 50K Learning Challenge helped to create a future-orientated learning culture within the company by putting the tools into the hands of each employee to use it in one selves and our company’s best interest. Announced as a challenge, with game propositions, the main goal of this project was to empower growth supported by the reason WHY the challenge is done. We head for being recognized as a learning company, employer of choice, aligned with the strategy of a challenger and curious brand. The 50K E-learning’s process was implemented in two phases:
• Motivating learners to learn what they can apply and increase their engagement level
• Monitoring effectiveness and progress
Our access was gamifying the learning process and creating simulations designed to change our colleagues’ behavior and empower change!
Vip mobile – »Voice of users!«
During the COVID-19 pandemic, we wanted to provide relevant learning material to fit the situation as well as user’s needs. So, we provided a voting poll on our internal social network platform to ask colleagues to propose learning topics they need and we fulfilled our promise – we launched all 14 requested courses, of which Cyber security phishing was the most popular with 650 visitors. Many of learning topics were supported by online soft skill workshops. Also, we responded to organizational need to cover relevant topics for supporting new way of work, like classes on virtual meetings, tools or the virtual store.
A1 Slovenia: »Industry know-how«.
Because there are numerous parallels between companies from different industries, since March this year we hold “Industry know-how” webinars several times per year; these take the format of a discussion between CEOs, and are aimed at sharing best practices between companies. At A1 Slovenia we continually encourage the development of our employees and emphasize the importance of obtaining new knowledge. Digital platforms provide colleagues various types of content that help them obtain knowledge and skills for the future. Those colleagues who are in direct connection with our customers regularly take part in evaluations (tests, role play, quizzes) that are especially aimed at improving their communication skills, sales and their knowledge of A1 products and services.
A1 Austria: »New Working normal«
For executives, more mobile working requires a new way of leading – based on trust, to, at the end of the day, achieve the best results. At A1 Austria managers have been supported in this process since August with a new learning format – the COOC (Corporate Open Online Course) on the topic of “New Working Normal” and experience practical approaches, tips and ideas within 3 weeks. From #MotivationalMonday to #FridayWithFriends, the program is designed to be varied, with short inputs, live sessions with external experts and top A1 managers and the opportunity to exchange ideas with colleagues. The format takes place exclusively via MS-Teams and uses the wide range of collaborative functions of the tool.
A1 Croatia: Pub quizzes
Pub quizzes are a great way to engage people and to improve their knowledge about our company. We organized 16 online pub quizzes through the summer 2020, in which 220 employees were answering popular pub questions and questions related to activities of A1 Croatia. Test your knowledge: would you know, too? Which Croatian city was the first smart city? What is the name of A1`s donation platform? What are the main strategy pillars of A1 Group? Almost every time a different team won and this proves, that both interest and engagement of our employees were very high. Everyone had good fun, laugh, knowledge and great prizes. Learning by gamification worked out!
Constant Learning @ A1 Belarus
The latest challenges of modern times kick-started a full-blown transition to digital education. We are proud that all of the educational events in A1 Belarus have been held in online mode since March 2020. The team is particularly interested in various webinars in the field of psychology, especially those discussing various stress relief techniques. Moreover, a “Happiness Marathon” was held last summer with over 80 active participants. The transition to 100% digitalization in the field of education also promoted the development of internal mentorship. Furthermore, an online library has been launched, and throughout its existence (of three months) 2,322 books books were downloaded already!
A1 Group – Learning Topic of the Month
With a more targeted approach and more individualized learnings for specific target groups, the new A1 Learning Topic reloaded helps us to better understand our A1 Group strategic business topics. The #A1LearningTopic explains each topic in a nutshell, highlights why the topic has high relevance for us and what exactly is done in our company in that area. Examples of our A1 Learning Topics are: 5G, Marketing Automation and Cloud. Besides, Robotic Process Automation and Agility are – apart from compulsory courses – the most completed courses companywide!