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Kinko's Knowledge Network Delivers Flexible Learning and Development

Press release from the issuing company

DALLAS, Feb. 6 -- Efficiently training a widely dispersed workforce is a considerable challenge for any company, particularly for multi- location businesses that constantly adopt new technologies to serve their customers. To answer this challenge, Kinko's recently reinvented its learning and development strategy with the aim of providing team members with a flexible, anytime, anywhere learning environment. The recently unveiled Kinko's Knowledge Network combines the best of e-learning, instructor-led and hands-on education designed to promote professional development, increase retention, drive revenue, improve quality and increase customer satisfaction. "Kinko's is known for providing 24/7 access and for using technology as an enabler for our customers. The Kinko's Knowledge Network leverages those same strengths to deliver training for our team members and ultimately better service for our customers," said Paul Rostron, senior vice president of human resources for Kinko's. "The Kinko's Knowledge Network puts a wide range of professional development at our team members' fingertips. At the same time, it reduces time to market for training on new products, services, policies and procedures." Benefits of this blended mix also include a more efficient training spend for Kinko's. Training industry statistics show that retail companies spend an average of $79 per employee each year on learning and development. In 2003, Kinko's will invest more than three-and-a-half times the national average while saving an estimated 75 percent on travel and other training-related costs over previous years. About the Kinko's Knowledge Network The Kinko's Knowledge Network combines a large variety of e-learning and instructor-led training for Kinko's field operations, sales, and corporate team members. Course offerings include customized and off-the-shelf courses on sales, project management, leadership, and information technology, as well as real-time online sessions focused on Kinko's-specific policies, operations, products and services. The Knowledge Network was developed with the input of more than 130 Kinko's team members, ranging from branch team members and managers through operations directors and human resources staff. This group reviewed earlier training programs and developed best practices for the new system. "As a result of the knowledge we've gained through the development of the Kinko's Knowledge Network, we have created a training infrastructure and curriculum that will build upon Kinko's position as a leading-edge company dedicated to attracting, developing and retaining the best team in our industry," said Whitney McNaught Shelley, Kinko's director of learning and development. Selecting the Right Suppliers As Kinko's revisited its approach to learning and development, the company quickly decided to identify the optimal mix of training delivery. Choosing the right suppliers enabled Kinko's Learning & Development Department to focus on developing custom content and selecting off-the-shelf solutions that best meet the company's needs. The backbone of the Knowledge Network is the Saba Learning Management System (LMS), which automates the administration of training activities for each individual team member. The LMS provides user registration, creates a personal home page for each team member, provides a course catalog, maintains training records for learners, and generates status reports to management. Kinko's Virtual Classroom incorporated Centra's real-time Web collaboration application to provide training to team members in a live or recorded instructor-led virtual classroom, greatly reducing the amount of time and cost necessary to deploy new learning courses throughout the company. The system also includes courses from numerous e-learning providers, including Element K, Corpedia Education, The Richardson Company, Personnel Decisions International and EDS.