NBK Group HR played a key role in implementing bank’s digital agenda

KUWAIT: In 2021, Group Human Resources at the National Bank of Kuwait (NBK) played a key and pivotal role in implementing NBK’s strategic objectives in the midst of the health, economic and social challenges imposed by the COVID-19 pandemic. The group supported NBK’s digital transformation agenda by implementing a state-of-the-art training program promoting digital culture across the Group.

The group also continued to support employees’ development and training through improving its digital training infrastructure, following global best practices to raise employees’ efficiency. This approach is clearly reflected in the quality of NBKs services and products, whilst leading to increased customers satisfaction.

In 2021, the Human Resources Group’s strategy encompassed supporting the government’s initiatives as well as the wellbeing of the community through bracing the vaccination program to accelerate social and economic recovery. Moreover, the Group continued its strategy aimed at professional talent acquisition, engagement, and retention as part of the bank’s plan to strengthen its leading position as the largest national labor employer in the private sector in Kuwait.

Training courses

The training and development department continued to actively develop its training infrastructure across all platforms by introducing the latest technologies and most advanced interactive digital tools, in cooperation with the most prestigious institutions and universities around the world. Today, NBK has one of the latest digital infrastructure platforms and a unique training and development system, keeping up with international best practices.

The group continued to develop the bank’s electronic training system into an integrated digital platform with enhanced accessibility, through which we may offer a wide range of training programs, i.e. offering Induction training programs for new hires, fulfilling regulatory requirements stipulated by the Central Bank of Kuwait (CBK), and developing basic professional skills. It goes to show that the training experience at NBK goes far beyond being a vehicle for testing and assessing knowledge.
The training and development department has also modified its strategy to adopt “Continuous Learning” or lifelong development, which is always applied at the group level, promoting a culture that supports employees’ personal growth and appreciates the value of their long-term career path. Moreover, we constantly invest in promoting our employees’ talents and skills to maintain our sustainable growth.

We pride ourselves on providing equal opportunities to all NBK employees through offering opportunities to participate in training programs that are designed based on assessing the individual needs of each and every employee across all departments. NBK is also committed to developing employees academic and professional skills to assume leading positions in the future. As part of the Group’s comprehensive strategy to improve employee’s learning experience, the Training and Development Department continuously strive to leverage new technologies to make e-learning more appealing and highly effective for all NBK employees, also provides more than 3,500 training opportunities for bank employees during the year 2021.

This year, 137 trainees participated in “Yalla Watani” training program designed to develop and train new employees, in addition to the participation of 157 employees in the Induction Program across various departments. These programs were offered through virtual & e-learning platforms.

During the year, NBK provided 58 training courses for 1,272 participants on various topics related to the development of personal and behavioral skills. The program was offered to new employees as well as managers, in line with the bank’s annual plan. Additionally, 132 trainees participated in the Middle Management Program through the organizing company’s virtual and e-learning platforms, as well as through remote interaction with the trainers to develop professional skills and refine their talents across a wide array of various topics, including but not limited to: administrative skills, adaptive leadership, change management, effective communication skills and improving flexibility in leadership.

NBK also offered a specialized employee training program in Trade Finance in cooperation with Euromoney. NBK also offered “ “Moody’s Credit Curriculum Program”, the Beginners and Intermediate Level Trainees, a collaboration between NBK and the international credit rating agency Moody’s. Moreover, NBK launched “Data Analytics Academy” program, in partnership with SAS, with the aim of imparting its employees with the required skills, in addition to holding a workshop on Data Analytics through Tableau Data Preparation and Visualization and organizing a training program for Funds Transfer Departments employees on the ISO 20022 Standard for Financial and Payment Messages.

Talent Development

NBK’s human capital development strategy is placed at the heart of its strategic plans as the efficiency of the work ensures the quality of all types of banking services provided across the different markets in which it operates. NBK invests heavily in its employees, regarding them as its most valuable resource, by providing the best training programs and workshops to enhance their skills in the areas of leadership, implementation of strategies, change management and innovation to keep pace with the rapid developments in the banking industry.

In 2021, NBK celebrated the graduation of two new batches of trainees who have successfully passed the selection criteria qualifying them to join this intensive program especially tailored for Kuwaiti university graduates.

The NBK Academy Program, launched 13 years ago, has been supporting NBK’s strategy to attract and recruit national cadres, by developing and qualifying Kuwaiti fresh graduates to start their career in the banking sector.

The bank is also keen to offer a series of training courses and lectures, being one of the leading banking institutions in Kuwait in organizing training programs for its employees. One of the main focus points was leadership and teamwork. The lecture, which witnessed remarkable interaction and was attended by 220 bank employees, focused on the importance of leadership skills to create clarity about setting team goals and reaching desired results, as well as delegating responsibilities to team members while providing the appropriate level of support, in addition to using good planning to focus on top priorities to enhance their effective roles in their organizations.

Commitment to Kuwatization

NBK continued to deliver on its historical role and social responsibility by attracting and recruiting national talent. About 340 Kuwaitis were hired in 2021, 44.4 percent were female, as NBK continues to confirm its commitment to gender equality. Moreover, women represented 45.6 percent of NBK’s workforce. The Group also strived to promote female empowerment through providing guidance and presenting career development opportunities.

NBK participated in Ring the Bell Event, organized by UN Women and in cooperation with the Supreme Council for Planning and Development (SCPD) and Boursa Kuwait to promote the empowerment of women in various fields. NBK is the top Kuwaiti private sector employer of national labor with a Kuwatization rate of 74.3 percent. The bank also has a strategy to attract, engage and retain national talents, in addition to developing their skills to prepare leaders of the future. Highlighting its keenness to support the youth and qualify them to build a career pathway, NBK participated in four career fairs to provide informative and enlightening services to help the youth looking for job opportunities in the private sector in making appropriate decisions about their career.

Reflecting the success of NBK’s human capital management plans, the bank enjoys the highest retention rates of Kuwaiti employees. Group Human Resource posted 97 internal job announcements across various departments, and 183 employees moved to new positions, enabling them to pursue a new career.

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