ESOL courses help XPO staff progress at work

Eastern European warehouse workers who have improved their English skills with the help of the Community union have been progressing to new roles at the XPO Logistics/Adidas site in Bedford.

Learners at XPO
Staff at XPO Marston Gate receive certificates from their English Teacher and members of the XPO leadership team

In total, 26 learners completed the 16-week English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) programme delivered by Axia Solutions in the autumn. Of them, 11 have used their new-found confidence and skills to move up the workplace ladder to a range of new roles.

In addition, three have become health and safety reps – which they could not have done without improving their English skills – while one of the trio has also put himself forward as a union rep as well.

Communitas Project Officer Mick Brightman and XPO Training Manager Matt Betts organised the course around the shift times on site, so that learners could either come in an hour early once a week to learn before their shift started or stay an hour later when their shift ended.

Mick said: 

The students gave us really positive feedback and all 26 of them ended up with a qualification either at their assessment level or one above it, which was fantastic.”

The company was delighted with the results and organised a celebration event to present the learners with their certificates.

Matt said:

The programme is an excellent addition to our learning and development offering here on site.”

The success of the programme can be put down to the great collaboration between XPO, Communitas and Axia Solutions providing an outstanding learning programme that all of our colleagues can benefit from and that really drives our company ethos of ‘you grow, we grow’ forwards.”

Thirty workers have signed up to take part in a fresh ESOL programme in Bedford that Communitas, XPO and Axia are looking to run this spring.

This story first appeared in the Summer 2019 Learning Rep.