Echelon Uses Professional Actors to Create Training

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<p><strong>London &mdash; July 30</strong><br />While work on the Channel Tunnel Rail Link (CTRL) picks up, Echelon Consulting is working with London and Continental Railways (LCR) to recruit, select and train the numbers and caliber of station staff members necessary to help build an impressive reputation for customer service and care.<br /><br />Because having highly developed interpersonal skills are among the most important criteria for getting a job at the new station, Echelon engaged the help of actors from Characters Drama Based Learning Ltd. to test the 1,570 or so job applicants. </p><p>In addition, the actors also played a part in ongoing staff development training in customer care techniques for the railway&#39;s existing staff.<br /><br />After initially screening job applicants via a telephone interview, about 400 people were invited to the highly prestigious and conveniently situated Arsenal&#39;s Emirates Stadium in July for the final selection tests. </p><p>There, in groups of up to 12they took part in a half-day selection exercise that involved:<br /></p><ul><li>Watching a scene played out by actors Lloyd Campbell (railway customer service officer) and Catherine Hamilton (customer).</li><li>Commenting on that scene as it is replayed.<br /></li><li>Commenting on another, which involved a customer complaint.<br /></li><li>Identifying irregularities and potential hazards in a photograph taken on St Pancras station.<br /></li><li>Producing a report of an incident.<br /></li><li>One-to-one interviews.</li></ul><p>&nbsp;</p><p><br />Throughout the exercises, the candidates were observed by a team of assessors. </p><p>All candidates were told the outcome of their job application within a few days of the assessment session.<br /><br />&quot;Echelon is also carrying out induction training for the successful candidates,&quot; Managing Director David Hill said. &quot;This training, which follows on seamlessly from the assessment process, is due to be completed before LCR hands over responsibility for St Pancras station to Network Rail in September.<br /><br />&quot;Once the new staff have received their technical training and induction program, they will be undergoing further customer care training, thus putting in place the fundamental criteria by which these staff can be perceived, and judged, by the travelling public.&quot;<br /><br />Hill said the whole program &mdash; from recruitment and selection to induction and customer care training &mdash; has been devised to allow the &quot;seamless&quot; reinforcement of a highly professional Network Rail brand of customer service. </p><p>&quot;We&#39;re very fortunate to be able to use such an excellent and prestigious venue as the Emirates Stadium to carry out the assessments and training,&quot; he said. &quot;Moreover, we&#39;re not aware of actors being used in this way &mdash; as part of the assessment, as well as the training process &mdash; before. </p><p>&quot;Indeed, we&#39;ll be taking these actors to the Echelon stand at the Customer Service Management Exhibition at the NEC in Birmingham at the end of September, where they will be demonstrating their ground-breaking role in this exercise.&quot;</p>

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