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    Oxford Instruments

    • Industry: The company designs and manufactures a range of high specification scientific instruments, including electron spectroscopes, superconductors, microanalysis systems, etc.
    • Location: Oxford, UK and New Jersey, USA.
    • Turnover: GBP£ 40 million
    • Employees: 1,500
    • Website: https://www.oxinst.com

     

     

    Context

     

    Oxford Instruments PLC is a leading provider of high technology products, systems and tools to the world’s leading industrial companies and scientific research communities. With the organisation entering a new phase of its business, through international expansion and the development of new technologies, a full development centre was needed to ensure that the top leadership team had the skills and knowledge necessary to lead the team to the next level.

    Problem

     

    The CEO was concerned that, with the company entering a new phase, the top management team did not possess the full range of capabilities necessary to ensure that the company achieved the level of success expected by investors and shareholders.

    There was a need, therefore, to identify exactly which skills executives possessed or lacked so that a development plan could be implemented to ensure that all executives were fully trained and prepared for the expected demands coming from the organisation’s expansion into new businesses and markets.


    Solution

     

    The first requirement was to ensure that the right knowledge and skills would be measured by the assessment. All the top stakeholders were interviewed so that a complete understanding of the company’s values, business and future direction could be obtained. A competency framework was then designed to be used, not only for the assessment, but also for any future talent management decisions.

    Following this, a full development centre was implemented, with exercises including simulations, psychometric questionnaires and interviews. Each participant was given full feedback on their performance and a complete individual development plan developed for each participant.

    Conclusion

     

    The development of capabilities for the senior team had two immediate benefits. First of all, by strengthening the organisation’s top management capability, the level of employee engagement and creativity both increased, enabling the company to take full advantage of its drive to develop and sell new technologies and products. Secondly, it provided the top team with additional skills to enable them to coach and develop their own staff, enhancing the capability not only, therefore, of those who participated directly in the assessment but also of their subordinates.