British American Tobacco - Career development

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Career development

Progressing talented people so they thrive

Our leadership teams the world over demonstrate our commitment to promoting and developing the very best people, wherever they are from.

And as you’d expect from a leading global business, we offer highly competitive rewards for success, invest heavily in training and development and offer truly international career opportunities.

Our global talent strategy aims to create a legacy of leaders. We focus on driving high performance and the development of leadership capabilities to help our people realise their full potential. We do this by providing the right job experiences, opportunities to learn from others and through our global learning and development portfolio.

We place a lot of emphasis on creating a coaching culture, as we believe that training and development should take place as close as possible to the work being done. We also think that coaching is the right way to develop leaders at all levels, to share knowledge and to build better business solutions.

Global graduate initiatives

Our one-year Global Graduate Programme offers graduates a full-time role from day one and a chance to make an immediate impact on our business.

All with the aim of becoming a manager at the end of the first year, the programme offers world-class development and training to help build business awareness and aid functional development.

Among the training offerings is the BAT Global Graduate Academy: an intensive two-week training as part of our one-year Global Graduate programme. The programme focuses on developing the next generation of diverse leaders and accelerating the development of their commercial leadership skills. It offers graduates a full-time role from day one and gives them access to career and development advice from senior leaders and Management Board members.

Battle of Minds is our global competition focused on finding the brightest early-career business minds around the globe – helping to develop the next generation of diverse leaders. In 2021, the contest focused on ESG, with each team pitching to solve a challenge focused on culture, farming, waste or energy. The competition saw over 2,700 teams enter from 27 countries. The winners were Team Ijo, from Indonesia, who impressed the judges with their proposal to produce environmentally friendly, edible straws made of seaweed.

Find out more about some of our early career initiatives at BAT.

Learning and development

Our unwavering commitment and investment into the development of leadership and functional ‘must win’ capabilities has resulted in an average of 17.9 training hours delivered per full-time equivalent (FTE) of our management population, with an average of £311 invested per FTE, for all employees in 2021. This included 239 training programmes all delivered virtually across our leadership, functional and digital portfolios. All functional ‘must win’ capabilities have foundational learning programmes in place, creating a level playing field of knowledge and skills – with 31% of programmes developing advanced level capabilities.

For example, by 2021 our flagship Marketing in the Digital Era programme had trained 2,762 marketing managers, which is 85% of our marketing management population, in digital marketing. In addition, over 6,600 employees attended our core leadership programmes in 2021, including four international cohorts of our Women in Leadership programme and two cohorts of our Global Graduate Academy. To extend learning reach, while ensuring quality of all our programmes, we have shifted all our programmes to 100% virtual. This has been a game-changer, making it more accessible for more people across the Group. Our digital learning platform, The GRID, is the gateway to our learning portfolio – accessible to 100% of our management population, providing digital learning anytime, anywhere. In addition, circa 13,000 managers have completed our leadership potential assessment – Leadermeter – which enables early identification of talent for accelerated development.

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