Go Ahead London

Go-Ahead London is the largest bus operating company in the Go-Ahead Group.  Go – Ahead London comprises London Central, London General, Blue Triangle, Docklands Buses and East Thames Buses. It runs a fleet of over 1800 buses and accounts for approximately 490 million bus journeys annually on around 180 day and night routes.

Following a review of key management roles across the business, Go-Ahead London recognised that a number of gaps existed in their succession plans.  In addition the business had recently acquired a number of additional bus depots and wished to understand the talent that had been acquired and whether or not those people would fulfil some of the existing gaps.  The business therefore asked Developing People International to design and deliver an independent assessment of both internal and external candidates for a number of key senior management roles across the business.

What we delivered for Go Ahead London was:

  • An independent assessment and ranking of internal and external candidates against an agreed set of criteria.

  • A list of managers who were ‘ready now’ to fill the relevant management posts and a list of those who were not ready yet for promotion but had the talent and potential for future development.

  • The development needs for each candidate and recommendations about how these might be fulfilled.

  • Individual reports for each candidate detailing how they performed during the assessment centre and a summary of their individual strengths and areas for improvement.

Our Approach was to work in partnership with Go-Ahead London and we:

  • Defined the set of criteria on which the candidates were assessed against.

  • Used a range of proprietary and bespoke assessment tools to assess the candidates.

  • Delivered a number of one day assessment centres during which the candidates undertook a series of thought provoking and challenging assessment activities.

  • Analysed the outcomes, ranked the candidates and provided prompt management feedback which enabled decisions to be made quickly.

  • Provided hard copy management reports as well as individual candidate reports detailing the outcomes from the assessment process.

  • Provided follow up support as required by individual candidates.

What was the impact of our work?

  • An independent, objective assessment and ranking of candidates which enabled the business to select the most appropriate people for each of the management roles, thereby ensuring successful succession.

  • Personal development plans for each candidate to enable them to step up into their new roles as quickly as possible, or alternatively know the steps they needed to take to fulfil a more senior role in the future.

  • A process that was seen as a positive learning experience by both internal and external candidates thus maintaining Go-Ahead’s professional image both internally and externally.