Whether they work in our stores, call centers, mail service pharmacies, corporate offices, or any other location, all CVS Caremark colleagues receive regular training, which is an important part of the company’s culture of lifelong learning and skill development. Nearly 50 training and development programs exist across the company, allowing us to evolve as an organization and to retain and benefit from the expertise of seasoned colleagues who depend on training as an important way to advance their careers. Managers and supervisors actively promote these training opportunities to all colleagues as part of the company’s normal course of business and all colleagues completed a minimum of three hours of training in 2011.
Emerging Leaders Program
Since 2001, our Emerging Leaders Program has developed the skills of high-performing store managers, pharmacists, pharmacy supervisors and other field managers who are potential candidates for promotion. Participants attend development sessions focused on leadership competencies and building functional skills and knowledge. They are also provided with on-the-job experiences and opportunities to further enhance their leadership skills. Throughout the development process, they have access to coaches who support their growth
Most colleagues who are promoted to field management positions are graduates of the Emerging Leaders Program. In 2011, the program prepared 183 high-performing colleagues for this next step in their careers.
Retail Leaders of Tomorrow
In 2011, we established Retail Leaders of Tomorrow, a high potential leadership development program dedicated to the growth of Managers and Directors in the retail business. The 25 participants in this program were nominated by departmental senior leaders based on performance, potential and when an individual’s career aspirations indicate a long term interest in retail. The program is comprised of business leader facilitated sessions, business challenges and one-on-one mentoring with a member of the retail leadership team.
Our Leadership Forum was conceived in 2009 as a program that could help us build the next generation of CVS Caremark leaders with a broad understanding of our integrated approach to health care. Leadership Forum participants are selected for their potential to contribute to our culture, to think strategically across our multiple lines of business and to build and maintain relationships across the company that can be leveraged to help us deliver for our customers, patients, clients and plan members. In 2011, 162 high-potential leaders from across the company were selected to participate in our Leadership Forum.
Hiring Our Heroes
In November, 2011, CVS Caremark joined First Lady Michelle Obama and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce at the fourth annual “Business Steps Up: Hiring our Heroes” event held in Washington, D.C. As a Chairman’s Circle sponsor of Hiring our Heroes, CVS Caremark participated in job fairs in Chicago, Washington and Hawaii as part of an effort to connect 100,000 veterans and military spouses with employment opportunities – the program’s overall goal. Hiring our Heroes is a year-long nationwide campaign to help veterans and their spouses find meaningful employment and we are working to participate in a number of additional job fairs in 2012 and 2013 in support of this effort.
Military spouses and veterans currently work in a wide variety of positions across CVS Caremark, including at CVS/pharmacy retail stores, distribution centers, mail service pharmacies and MinuteClinic walk-in medical clinics inside select CVS/pharmacy stores across the country. The company has also established a resource and networking group called Valor for colleagues who are military veterans and for those currently serving and their supporters. For its effort to date, CVS Caremark was recognized with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Women Veteran and Military Spouse Employment and Mentoring Award.
Partnering With Communities to Create Job Opportunities
Another area where we continued to invest in 2010 was our collaborative approach to working with nonprofit and government leaders to build recruitment and training programs and create job opportunities in the communities we serve.
In 2010 we reported to Congress’ Joint Economic Committee that we had introduced more than one million youths to pharmacy as a potential career and provided $4 million in summer internship wages for high school students since 2000. We also participated on the Economic Recovery Advisory Board as part of a subcommittee tasked with advising the White House on workforce development strategies and we provided Department of Labor Secretary Hilda Solis with an overview of our workforce development programs.
The conversation with the Obama administration continued in 2011, as we again engaged with the White House and the Department of Labor on the President’s Summer Jobs+ program, a new call to action for businesses, non-profits, and government to work together to provide pathways to employment for low-income and disconnected youth in the summer of 2012.
CVS Caremark pledged to reach out to 100,000 youth in 2012 and to hire 20,000 young adults between the ages of 16 and 24. Many of the new colleagues will occupy part-time and full-time positions such as pharmacy service associates, technicians, cashiers and interns in a variety of corporate functions.
Our 2011 discussions with America’s Promise Alliance resulted in our CEO Larry Merlo attending the Building a Grad Nation Summit in early 2012. The Summit brought together community groups, educators, local and state leaders, nonprofit organizations, businesses and youth. Participants discussed the progress being made and the remaining challenges in the nation’s efforts to increase high school graduation rates and prepare young people for post-secondary education and a career. Merlo highlighted the model behind one of our flagship employment programs, Pathways to Pharmacy, which has a successful history of introducing tens of thousands of young people to careers in pharmacy.
Our seven Regional Learning Centers (RLCs) are at the center of another successful training model. Several of these innovative facilities are fully-operational mock-ups of actual CVS/pharmacy stores, allowing our colleagues and community partners to receive instructor-led training in a “real-world” environment. The program continued to support the training and development of more than 8,000 retail colleagues in 2011. The RLCs – located in Massachusetts, New Jersey, Washington, DC, Ohio and Michigan – are also used by organizations that we partner with to provide job-seekers with valuable employment skills and job opportunities. In fact, in 2011, we hired 617 new colleagues as a result of these training partnerships. In 2012, we plan to open an eighth center in New York City.
Through the Welfare to Work program, we have hired more than 75,000 people since 1996 who had been on public assistance prior to joining our workforce. In 2011, more than 5,000 people were hired through this program. We are proud to have a high rate of retention of these colleagues that is approximately double the rate of the average new retail colleague.
In 2011 we continued to invest in our Mature Workers program, Talent is Ageless, an initiative designed to recruit and retain colleagues who are age 50 or older. Over the past two decades, CVS Caremark has actively increased the number of colleagues who are 50 or older through our mature worker programs and partnerships with groups such as AARP, National Council on Aging, American Society on Aging, Experience Works, Senior Community Service Employment Program, and others.
Today, colleagues over the age of 50 represent approximately 19 percent of our workforce. Some of our mature workers have been with the company for years, with many completing their 40th, 50th and even 60th year of service. Others have joined the company as a second career – sometimes choosing to work just part-time.