Onboarding ICT Improve

ICT Improve is co-responsible for successful onboarding program at client

  • 4 June 2024
  • 5 minutes

ICT Improve is a valued training provider. This is evident from the top position in the Computable ranking with a score of 9.5. In addition to training and education, ICT Improve also offers coaching, supervises change processes and takes care of the design of the internal academy. Since 2017, ICT Improve has been providing the onboarding program in co-creation with a large multinational, a good example of how ICT Improve unburdens customers.

With a club of 40 professionals, based in Eindhoven, ICT Improve has been a partner in training IT professionals and organizations for more than 25 years, both in Eindhoven and at other central locations, as well as in-company. Benjamin Timmermans is account manager for trainings at Improve. "We work for renowned clients such as Rijkswaterstaat, Philips, Canon, TomTom and ASML," explains Benjamin. "Seven years ago, ICT Improve was asked by a major customer to organize a training course for newly recruited software developers. They were familiar with ICT Group's onboarding program and wanted something similar." 

Their new employees came straight from university and had no work experience yet. Before that, they only hired people with work experience, which is why they wanted to guide these recent graduates a bit more. In the meantime, ICT Group has significantly expanded its own onboarding program, as well as onboarding at the customer. What hasn't changed is that ICT Improve is still intensively involved in this.

Growth of the onboarding program

Consultant Erik Raaymakers focuses explicitly on this onboarding program at ICT Improve. He says: "In those early days, we prepared the recently graduated IT students in four weeks to get to work at full speed. Of course, we coordinated the program with the customer. Thanks to our large network, we were able to bring in exactly the right experts from both organizations both to guide the new employees. Both on a technical-theoretical and practical level. We had to deal with a relatively large number of graduates from outside the Netherlands. There was a lot of new recruits at that time. That meant about ten onboarding programs on an annual basis, which of course also paid attention to our client's goals and values."

In the years that followed, the growth in the number of new employees increased. The request was therefore to start two onboarding programs per month. The target group also expanded to include new employees who had already gained work experience elsewhere. The diversity within the groups also increased. At peak times, there were about a hundred new employees per onboarding program. "Not only did we get more developers, but also scrum masters, for example," Erik explains. "Together, we adapted the program accordingly."

Scalability and flexibility

Benjamin explains the choice to entrust the onboarding to ICT Improve. "We have the people and the expertise. It requires quite a bit of scalability and flexibility from all parties. The customer is satisfied as it goes. Moreover, we do this entirely in co-creation."
In the meantime, the program has been further refined. The onboarding process starts in a general period of approximately five days. Afterwards, there is an individual à la carte program. The new employees can choose from an extensive list of training courses. "Many training courses start every month, so they can select training courses as they wish," says Erik.

All fluctuations and tailor-made programs require considerable flexibility from ICT Improve. "As far as we know now, our client is sticking to the 2030 target: doubling the number of software developers. That means that there is still a lot to come our way," says Benjamin.

Onboarding with a practical assignment

"Onboarding now takes about six weeks with the tailor-made training courses included," Erik outlines. "We are going to extend that to three months on request, in order to be able to equip new employees even better, so that they are productive as quickly as possible. For this expansion, we are thinking of a practical assignment, so that employees who have done the software onboarding gain knowledge that is needed in a regular project, and at the same time make a contribution that would otherwise be left undone. Our experience is that people learn the most from doing it themselves. The new employees get to work on things that are on the task list of project teams, but that those teams don't get around to themselves. This is useful for both the teams working on assignments and the new employees. The practical assignment is carried out within the safe environment of onboarding, where employees can learn and make mistakes in peace. Of course, we are dependent on the teams that provide us with the practical assignments every month, but we have every confidence in that."

Also for other organizations

The new employees really appreciate the fact that there is so much room for their onboarding. "Many participants have experienced with previous employers that they were left to their own devices and thrown in at the deep end," says Erik.

Together with other stakeholders, Benjamin and Erik sit on the client's steering committee on behalf of ICT Group. "In doing so, we are helping to determine the strategic direction of the onboarding program," says Benjamin. "We do all kinds of training programs for large organizations. This onboarding program is specific and long-term. ICT Improve has shown that it is perfectly capable of organizing and implementing such integrated programs, also for other organizations."

ICT Improve

About ICT Improve

ICT Improve is partner in training. With a club of 40 professionals and based in Eindhoven, they have been providing training and education for IT professionals for over 25 years. ICT Improve is a valued training provider, as evidenced by its top position in the Computable ranking with a score of 9.5. In addition to training and education, ICT Improve also provides change projects and setting up an internal academy.

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Pieter Withaar