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Success story: Airbus

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Despite having a full order book, a highly skilled workforce, being a global player and demonstrating innovation, Airbus’ senior management team and Executive committee wanted to ensure a pool of high potential young managers who were skilled enough to maintain the company’s leading position in technology – and who could react to future and continuous innovation needs.

This challenge was formalised and passed to the HR Talent and Executive Development (TED) department. They devised plans for a talent development programme that would align with the 4 pillars of the company’s vision - internationalisation, innovation, integration and engagement. The aim of the talent development programme was to improve the platform for greater internal mobility and to develop an engaged and skilled network of young Airbus managers, able to deliver customer value, drive improvement and innovation, develop themselves and others, practise teamwork, and work cross-functionally and internationally.

With a clearly defined business challenge, and as a result of the Airbus call for educational providers to develop a programme that would meet this need, AirBusiness Academy (ABA) and OUBS were selected on the basis of being a perfect fit - ABA for its knowledge of the “World of Airbus” and for its expertise in designing and delivering both air industry specific and personal development modules; and OUBS for its internationally recognised management qualification and its support for students to integrate theory with application to practice.

Airbus chose to commission and partner with ABA and OUBS to design and deliver the two-year Ju’MP programme as part of its Talent Development suite. The partners worked together to design a programme that would consist of ABA modules; OUBS’ Postgraduate Certificate in Management (stage 1 of the MBA) and on-the-job development from Airbus. The Ju’MP programme was designed to align with the vision, strategy, leadership competences and the talent management objectives defined by the Talent Executive development team. The partners designed their elements of the programme according to their expertise, to meet those needs.

A good balance between the academic and practical was needed with plenty of opportunities to solve management challenges and have wide and direct access to OUBS tutors and ABA facilitators. Cohesion amongst the Ju’MP participants and Ju’MP partners was achieved by introducing an extended team building session at the beginning of the programme. The first day includes representatives from Airbus senior executive team, OUBS and ABA representatives; followed by a two-day teambuilding event run by an ABA facilitator and OUBS tutors.

Ju’MP has been running successfully for over ten years. It began as a biennial programme, but in 2011 began running annually, demonstrating its now accepted position as an important part of Airbus’ talent development strategy. Equally importantly it is also an acknowledgement of its profile within the wider company as a successful Talent development programme, whose participants have had a real impact on the business.

The programme has been able to demonstrate real value through the work done by participants on the projects, their improved business skills and the leadership positions that so many of them are now taking within the company.

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