David Davensac, Head of Training Academy at Cardinal Security tells us a little bit about his role and what he thinks lies ahead for the new Cardinal Training Academy and the security industry.

Can you tell us a little bit about your new role and the new Cardinal Training Academy?

The role of Training and Development Manager has been re-introduced to Cardinal, in line with our strategy, and growth plans, and to meet the developing challenges of recruiting and retaining the right people in the right role, in the right place at the right time, and for the right money.

The remit of the role this time has been broadened to include focus on the development of Head Office staff at all levels, and the field support teams. The need to enable, engage and energise everybody, as well as security officers, to be the best that they can be right now, and to develop them in their ongoing career path with Cardinal is vital.

As well as launching a suite of training programmes delivered at our new Training Academy within the HQ at Great Chesterford, we will offer distance and self-led learning, along with fully-funded apprenticeships, to meet the diverse needs of our team, and in line with operational requirements and customer service expectations.

The Training Academy is fitted out with not only the latest audio-visual equipment it also has CCTV and physical security equipment, enabling demonstration and opportunities to practice and consolidate learning. The academy location will enable Head Office and visiting Field team members to attend ‘bite-size’ training sessions, rather than all-day events. This will create more accessible training, increase the frequency of programmes, and boost the opportunity to immediately transfer the learning back into the workplace. Action learning groups and ‘drop-in surgery style’ sessions for line managers will further provide ‘just-in-time’ support for needs-driven knowledge acquisition.

Where did you work before Cardinal?

Having received outstanding training in development in a variety of line manager roles I undertook a brand new role within the Argos stores chain, conducting needs analysis and design of distance-based learning materials for 10,000 staff and management. This then led to a field-based business partnering role in L&D. After a planned period of owning and operating my own hospitality business, partly to refresh my own leadership skills I then worked for a number of blue-chip companies as a freelance Learning and Development Specialist, covering needs analysis, programme design and facilitation, talent management and succession planning, through to evaluation and CRM.

I then worked for the Specsavers group which encompassed projects in Europe, where I introduced externally accredited leadership programmes, and the Insights Discovery model™ for team and personal effectiveness.

What attracted you to working at Cardinal?

Having worked for very large organisations where my roles were very specific, and with a lot of governance, I was excited by what is quite a rare opportunity which allows one to build something from the ground up. This role at the Cardinal Training Academy allows me to draw on my vast experience by developing a training and skills development strategy that can benefit all relevant parties. Not only have I been thoroughly impressed with Cardinal Security’s forward-thinking approach and dedication to providing security services of unrivalled quality, I am also delighted to be reporting directly to Keith Rogers, the company’s Central Services & Systems Director, who has excellent knowledge and experience of training and skills development – this will enable us to get immediate traction and really make a difference. We can attract and develop high-quality people, who may be new to the industry, and provide a career pathway that retains only the best.

What changes do you see for the industry in the next 5 years?

With the increasing need to maintain strong counter-terrorism skills, and the need to fully exploit technology in the pursuit of asset and people protection, security providers will need to identify and then maximise every opportunity to support their customers with a service that really does offer return on investment. Customers will demand both quantitative and qualitative information at their fingertips. They will expect to be able to measure and monitor the service and a partnership with a security provider that can mobilise and manage resources so that the customer doesn’t have to worry about this.

Expectations mean that manned guarding must be a professional and customer-focussed reflection of the standards provided to the public by Cardinal’s customer. Outsourcing by companies will remain highly competitive and many will now want a ‘one stop shop’ for all of their facilities management, receiving the service standards of a global organisation but with the personalised approach of a medium-sized business that doesn’t spread itself thin or cut corners to maintain price.

David will be providing a Masterclass at the Retail Risk Conference on 5th October 2017 – Enhance personal and team effectiveness – Insights Discovery Model™ – taster session.

David will be supporting Simon Chapman, CEO of Cardinal Security, by taking participants of the masterclass through a taster session of the Insights Discovery Model™. This will provide a fresh way of fostering powerful and effective interactions with new and existing contacts.

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