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NatWest Group case study

Talent Development Partner

The challenge

With over 19 million customers, and a global staff base of 60,000, The NatWest Group is the largest business and commercial bank in the UK. Following a significant restructure, NatWest launched The NatWest Talent Academy, a national scheme created to identify leading talent across the organisation and provide them with a ‘tailored and aspirational’ development experience.

Having partnered with Ivy House initially 5 years ago by sending just 1 delegate to an open programme, NatWest saw first hand the ‘radical impact’ that the programme could have. Placing increasing delegate numbers on our programmes over the following years, and seeing consistently transformational results, NatWest were passionate about providing this level of transformation to all of their emerging talent – and therefore chose Ivy House to be a core element of their Talent Academy.

The brief

The brief was simple: invest in the individual. Naturally, we loved this approach. NatWest wanted a unique development programme, unlike anything they’d offered before. Something that would be more valued than any previous learning opportunities their talent had been offered. Something that was aspirational, deeply individualised and focused on developing them personally and professionally. From a professional perspective they were focused on 2 things – developing future skills and future leaders; leaders who were more curious, collaborative, and who thought beyond financial services.

The solution

NatWest loved the idea of their talent being brought together with top talent from other leading organisations, giving them a challenging and immersive learning experience that was ‘not NatWest-centric’. It was for that reason they decided to place their talent on our open programmes. They selected Life Leader for their earlier-in-career population and The Master Programme for their more experienced talent who were already in leadership roles. When applying to The Talent Academy, each employee was profiled, meaning we were able to determine which talent would be the best fit for the programmes. Places were highly competitive – with only 10% of the 400 applicants being successful in attaining a place.

NatWest were also passionate about creating a connected network of future leaders across the organisation – connecting their people in a way they had not done before, bringing together talent from all parts of the organisations to build a tribe of people who could support each other through, and after the programme.

We worked with them to set up ‘action learning groups’ through which current delegates were connected with other Ivy House alumni, who are able to offer support on their learning journey. This has resulted in an incredible network of radical learners who will continue to grow and support each other through their time at NatWest. The learning team also got involved, building in additional embedding activities, discussion groups and elements to share, stimulate and continue to grow.   Delegates were offered opportunities to network with senior leaders, attend high-profile events, some of the alumni even collaborated to create a podcast series where they interviewed peers and individuals who shared their story in the context of the learning gained on the programme, which was aired across their in-house learning platform.

The impact

Ivy House continues to provide the most popular programmes within The Talent Academy. We have seen an incredible level of impact for all of the delegates involved, with an average NPS of +96.

What started as a one-person pilot has now developed into a deep partnership, and we’re incredibly proud to support NatWest in a number of areas across their business. We have collaborated on improving their Diversity and Inclusion solution, running their most successful D&I programme to date. We are continuing to support their purpose and social mobility agenda by connecting them with schools and students in some of most deprived areas of the UK, and giving them access to life-changing learning and opportunities. It’s fair to say this has been a true meeting of hearts, and together we’re making a real difference. 

This message sent from a previous NatWest delegate says it brilliantly: “I wanted to let you know that I just found out that I’ve got the job that I went for! I wanted to say a huge thank you to the Ivy House team. I drew upon my Ivy House learning during my interview and spoke about how much the course has taught me in general. It really helped me stand out and to show up as my best self! Thank you again.” Hannah, NatWest Group.

“I am personally very proud to have been part of the Ivy House journey since it’s very first pilot programme. I have seen first hand the significant positive impact it’s had on our own talent cohorts and on those from other organisations who I have had the privilege to mentor.

We are delighted that we have been able to extend our partnership with Ivy House further supporting their Award programme, helping those most in need get access to this exceptional learning. The impact on schools and individuals is clear from the feedback we receive. This really is life-changing learning”

Sam Bowerman, People Director, NatWest Group

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