Maersk Customer Service’s Training Needs Assessment

Importance of training needs assessment

Training and development programs for employees are crucial for organizations operating in all business industries. According to Mazhisham et al. (2019), training provides an opportunity to improve the staff’s knowledge base and job skills, thus affecting organizational performance and labor productivity. In the given case study, A.P. Moller-Maersk Group faced additional challenges regarding the company company’s talent-management practices as a result of its corporate growth and evolution (Groysberg & Abbott, 2013). This paper aims to discuss the importance of training needs assessment, incorporate adult learning principles of experiential learning for Maersk Customer Service – CARE Business Partner, and describe the importance of the training plan’s SMART objectives.

The Components of a Training Needs Assessment

The assessment of training needs is an essential process for employee training and development. According to Mazhisham et al. (2019), “failure to identify the gap between current performance and skills required causes major problems in terms of time, resources, and money” utilized for inadequate training (p. 20). As Groysberg and Abbott (2013) report, “attraction, identification, development, deployment, and scenario planning” were used as the components of a needs assessment to determine the training requirements of Maersk’sMaersk’s program (p. 6). The process of the needs assessment was primarily based on insufficient knowledge, underdeveloped skills, or wrong job-related attitudes of the staff.

The attraction was the first step aiming to bring the right people into the company through the new HR department. Identification was the second component, during which the top 120 positions of Maersk were discussed by the executive board, and the head of HR, aiming to determine the company company’s major needs and required talent capabilities. The third step involved the development of more individual training programs focusing on the training needs of new and experienced employees. Deployment was the fourth component that involved the implementation of a more balanced strategy and the utilization of partnerships with external consultants. Finally, the last component was scenario planning which aimed to assess each unit’s five-year plan and its compliance with people’s needs.

The Importance of Developing Learning Activities

Learning activities are essential as they enable the staff to demonstrate the acquired knowledge and skills and effectively transfer them from training into the job. According to Groysberg and Abbott (2013), Maersk’sMaersk’s HR launched an online depository called Development Shop that “included materials from 250 business schools globally and covered … financial acumen, strategic leadership, and self-leadership” (p. 10). Furthermore, training included classroom learning, e-learning, as well as access to business articles. The development of learning activities is a critical step for Maersk’sMaersk’s training program since it improves employee retention, considers the needs of new hires, and results in better organizational outcomes and performance.

Adult Learning Principles and Methods of Experiential Learning

To incorporate adult learning principles and methods of experiential learning into the Maersk Customer Service – CARE Business Partner training program, I would implement several steps. In particular, I would keep in mind the fact that adults can draw on previous experience to learn more. Therefore, I would design the training program, ensuring that participants can use their prior knowledge and skills to grow professionally at Maersk and bring value to the CARE position. Different training methods can be combined to meet various needs, such as traditional classroom learning and e-learning. Furthermore, experiential learning principles include focusing on the practical applications of the material learned.

The Value of a Training Needs Assessment in an Organization

Organizations can benefit from assessing their training needs for a number of reasons. For instance, the right training can eliminate the waste of resources and costs associated with ineffective programs. According to Mazhisham et al. (2019), investing in people who are not fit for their position can result in a performance decrease, while a lack of a well-designed learning program can compromise the company company’s image and productivity. As can be seen from Maersk’sMaersk’s case, a training needs assessment allows the organization to determine performance issues and align the learning and development programs with the organizational strategy (Groysberg & Abbott, 2013). Such a proactive approach can benefit both the employer and employees.

The Importance of Creating SMART Objectives for a Training Plan

Maersk can benefit from creating Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Time-oriented (SMART) objectives for its training plan since they enable the company to set clear goals aligned with its business plan. SMART objectives determine the organization’s plans and provide an evaluation of staffing and training needs, as well as employees’ progress and accomplishments (Mazhisham et al., 2019). Maersk can implement this framework to ensure that the trainers cover all essential objectives and address the company’s training needs. Furthermore, attainable goals are clear and time-based, which motivates people to work towards achieving them.

To conclude, training is a necessary process and an integral part of any company operating in today’s business climate. By focusing on providing relevant learning activities, an organization can improve its performance, job satisfaction, and employee retention. In this regard, assessing training needs is an essential process that provides an understanding of the primary objectives and issues to address. Furthermore, clear training objectives, as well as relevant training contents and methods, can positively impact job performance.


Groysberg, B, & Abbott, S. L. (2013). A.P. Møller – Maersk Group: Evaluating strategic talent management initiatives. HBS No. 9-412-147. Web.

Mazhisham, P. H., Khalid, M. Y., Nazli, N. N. N. N., Manap, R., & Hussain, N. H. M. (2019). Identification of training needs assessment in organizational context. International Journal of Modern Trends in Social Science, 1(5), 20-30. Web.

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