Graduate intake remains a cornerstone of our recruitment process. Over 7,600 (29 per cent) of Ferguson’s workforce in the USA now have higher education degrees. Growing early career talent is critical to our success and the goal of our College of Ferguson programmes are to increase the speed of impact for these new hires.
Each trainee, in conjunction with their College of Ferguson trainer, works through a well-rounded curriculum and syllabus that includes coursework on Ferguson culture and history; product knowledge; finance and credit; customer service; warehouse, counter and showroom management; systems training and much more. They are tracked and assessed locally by their trainer, but additional support and feedback is provided by assigned mentors who guide and inspire the trainees during their time in the programme.
We are beginning to use quantitative and qualitative metrics – total sales, tickets per associate, retention and promotability to measure the value trainees bring to the business. This year over 600 associates attended speciality programmes for Blended Branches, HVAC, Facilities Supply, Industrial and Waterworks in 18 training centres across the USA. We are already experiencing excellent retention rates of the associates who took part in prior year programmes.