Citi: Teaching a Large Workforce to Embrace and Succeed in a Virtual Workplace

Challenge

During the economic downturn of the last few years, Citi was struggling with shrinking margins. Meanwhile, employees were seeking a greater work/life balance, and Citi sought to embark on a new initiative to “go green.”

This confluence of challenge and opportunity led Citi to embrace a virtual workforce approach, reducing Citi’s overhead real estate costs and eliminating many employees’ expensive and long (average of three hours a day) commute.

The challenge was twofold:

  • At minimal cost, teach a huge workforce how to effectively work in a virtual environment.
  • Get all teams and individuals to accept and embrace this very different way of working.

Approach

Global Dynamics Inc. developed and delivered a series of webinars to explain the value of working virtually to all parties, employees, the customers, and the company. The webinars were focused on changing their mindset from a belief that they had to physically be in an office to an understanding that they could work well virtually.

Global Dynamics Inc. also developed a series of webinars to teach both leaders and staff of Citi the skills and competencies necessary to succeed in a virtual organization.

Further, we developed a knowledge transfer process for Citi’s in-house trainers to deliver the training, thus reducing the overall training cost. In order to accomplish this, GDI delivered some of the initial programs and then enabled them to take over delivery through a “train the trainer” program.

Results

  • With the rollout of these webinars, Global Dynamics helped to transform Citi’s learning environment from one that relied on face-to-face classroom experiences only, to a blended learning environment that supported interactive webinars, pre-recorded webinars, and distance self-learning courseware.
  • The virtual concept was well received. Our webinars accomplished a comfort level and an appreciation that working virtually had significant benefits and was something to embrace rather than fear.
  • Company expenses reduced following the first year transition, which included setup expenses.
  • Thousands of employees have taken the virtual training programs.