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Company: Bank of America
Category: Best Sales Training

Nomination: Credit Camp



The first Credit Camp training was initially released May 2018. Credit Camp was enhanced with additional content and re-released in 2019 and incorporated into performance management routines and action planning for underperforming financial centers.

Bank of America is one of the world’s leading financial institutions, serving approximately 67 million consumer and small business clients with approximately 4,300 retail financial centers, including 2,800 lending centers, 2,600 Merrill investment centers and 2,000 business centers. The Academy, a partnership between the business and Learning and Leadership Development, is the onboarding, training, and development organization that prepares over 80,000 employees in the Consumer Bank, Merrill and Private Bank to confidently serve the needs of our clients.

We have 15,000 front-line financial center employees that come from a variety of backgrounds in terms of work experience, level of education, or personal life experience, and are responsible for understanding clients’ life priorities. However, many of them have never personally experienced buying a home or had the need to improve their cash flow through refinancing their debt. With this dynamic, many employees lack the skill to identify client needs, causing clients to seek assistance from other financial institutions translating into lost opportunity and revenue.

To reduce the proficiency gap in consumer lending, The Academy developed Credit Camp - a learning series of 12 independent modules, 20 to 60 minutes long, that can be brought together to create an in-person leader led workshop that builds foundational knowledge of home, auto, and credit card lending for our teammates. Local leadership analyzes their business results and observes client conversations to identify the skill gaps and select the content that addresses the learning needs of their employees to quickly deliver a comprehensive workshop.

During the workshop, leaders use a variety of learning methods: demonstrations, peer-to-peer learning, and feedback. Leaders present the business acumen and demonstrate how to use the information in client conversations. Skill transfer deepens as participants break into groups and practice client conversations likely to occur in their financial center. After observing and providing feedback during the break out, the group is brought back together to debrief on what went well and what challenges they are having. Participants exit the workshop with consumer lending acumen and are better equipped to have quality conversations with clients and identify opportunities that will deepen relationships.

Credit Camp has been overwhelmingly successful. In 2019, over 1,700 workshops were conducted with over 30,000 teammates. Following the Credit Camp workshops delivered in 2019, markets have seen tremendous success, including:

The success of Credit Camp can be attributed to several factors:

• Strong alignment to Bank of America’s purpose to help make our client’s financial lives better, through the power of every connection.
• Joint, up front senior leader endorsement and commitment.
• Comprehensive gap assessment conducted by multiple stakeholders throughout the enterprise.
• Flexible design leveraging existing content from multiple sources.
• Structured content in increments of 20 to 60 minutes.
• Pilot before deployment - conducted a four month pilot prior to full deployment to allow for revision of materials.
• Robust implementation plan that linked the leadership of both organizations, Financial Centers and Lending.

Given the success of Credit Camp, there is an on-going commitment to the program, including:

• Full integration of the leader led Credit Camp workshop structure into self-directed, new-hire learning programs across the financial center network of approximately 4,300 centers. This means that teammates will be able to self-enroll to build foundational knowledge of home, auto, and credit card lending.
• Integration of Credit Camp modules into targeted action planning to close skill gaps in under-performing financial centers.
• Expansion of Credit Camp to additional client facing roles outside the financial center.
• On-going annual maintenance to ensure best practices and product enhancements are integrated to keep the content relevant and impactful.