The business environment is currently typified by rapid and ongoing change, which causes the future to be increasingly unpredictable and unsettled. Companies are struggling to maintain their competitive edge and to survive. It is therefore important that management should ensure that the necessary competencies and abilities are available to enable the coordination of both diversifies and specialized functions within the organisation, providing for current and future requirements. The purpose of this study is to determine the relationship between embarking on the Competency Acquisition Process (CAP) learning program for account managers and work performance. In order to attain this goal, the primary focus of the literature study was investigating what a learning organisation is, the importance and principles of a learning organisation, the types of learning and characteristics and approaches to a learning organisation. The company as a learning organisation and CAP was defined. Learning is then linked to performance by looking at the relationship between the two variables and also comparing the traditional approach of training with learning as a process. A questionnaire was designed consisting of forced-choice questions and answers and some open-ended questions. The purpose was to survey a large number of people about the topic of the research. Percentage in sales growth per sales staff member was obtained from the sales database department, and correlations were made with CAP progress data on SAP HR. From the analysis of data the following results were apparent: <ul> <li>--Embarking on CAP improved the relationship between subordinates and management and also assisted in improving teamwork amongst team members.</li> <li>--Most sales staff believes that CAP significantly influenced their In Trade Outlet Survey (ITOS) ratings.</li> <li>--CAP assisted the company in gaining a larger market share.</li> <li>--The majority of the respondents strongly agreed that the competencies and knowledge gained through CAP assisted them in increasing their sales of carbonated soft drinks.</li> <li>--CAP is believed to have improved the company’s Customer Service Measurement.</li> <li>--CAP significantly improved the levels of confidence of the sales staff.</li> <li>--99 % of the respondents believe that the Value Chain learning outcome positively influenced their work performance.</li> <li>--99 % of the respondents believe that the learning outcome: Knowledge of how sales fits in the Value Chain positively influenced their work performance.</li> <li>--Every respondent in the survey believed the product knowledge module had a positive impact on their work performance.</li> <li>--CAP emerged to be the learning intervention that has the most impact on the work performance of sales staff, followed by coaching by managers and the Sales Academy.</li> <li>--The results of the survey indicated that 96 % of the respondents believe that CAP was a worthwhile initiative.</li> </ul> Significant differences were found in sales growth since embarking on CAP between different race groups. Significant differences for CAP progress were found in respect of different plants. The research aimed to prove the hypothesis that CAP improved work performance. The core measurement of sales staff is growing sales volume, with all the other measurements measured in the questionnaire supporting this core function. Copyright 2005, University of Pretoria. All rights reserved. The copyright in this work vests in the University of Pretoria. No part of this work may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, without the prior written permission of the University of Pretoria. Please cite as follows: Bergh, C 2005, The impact of a competency acquisition process on the work performance of sales staff, MCom dissertation, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, viewed yymmdd < http://upetd.up.ac.za/thesis/available/etd-06212005-084440 / >
Dissertation (MCom (Human Resources Management))--University of Pretoria, 2006.