Orange is opening 14 training schools across the UK, in a bid to improve its retail staff’s skills and shape them into management material.
The dedicated training schools, known as Centres of Excellence, will open throughout the country later this month.
They will offer Orange’s self-styled phone trainers the opportunity to train themselves and gain the skills needed to become a store manager.
In England, ‘schools’ will open in Newcastle, Manchester, Sheffield, Milton Keynes, Coventry, Exeter, Chichester, Southend-on-Sea, Reading and Oxford Street, London.
In Scotland, there will be schools in Perth and East Kilbride, with centres also in Cardiff, Wales and Lisburn, Northern Ireland.
A spokeswoman said: ‘The Centres will be used as professional training venues.
‘By developing skills, knowledge and behaviour, the Centres of Excellence will provide all store staff throughout Orange Retail with the skills needed to become a store manager.
‘All centres are laid out in a consistent way and have the necessary equipment to provide a first-class training experience for all retail employees.’
Dedicated sales training teams will be stationed throughout the training venues. Staff will soon be given information on all the training schemes on offer, both via e-learning and instructor-led courses.
Staff will be able to book onto the courses online.
Bosses say existing portfolios and new courses will be added throughout the year in line with Orange’s needs.
Meanwhile, the operator is planning a further 50 refits in its stores from March, after seeing big benefits from recent refurbishments of more than 40 stores since October.
Sian Doyle, Orange director of retail, said: ‘Our new store opening and shop refit strategy is critical to our success.
‘It is important to enhance our brand on the high street, create an environment that makes our customers feel special and helps teams give each customer a better experience.’
Doyle added: ‘The stores look fantastic and are outperforming the rest of the Orange stores on sales.’