Crossing the Bridge of Success through Management Trainee Program  by Kawan Lama Group Career

Crossing the Bridge of Success through Management Trainee Program by Kawan Lama Group Career

9th October 2023

The rapid business growth of ACE, INFORMA, Toys Kingdom, and various other brands that are parts of Kawan Lama Group surely needs support from professional human resources availability as the main asset. Concerning this, in 2016, the Human Capital Directorate of Kawan Lama Group established Management Trainee (MT) program. 

Management Trainee Kawan Lama Group is an acceleration program for young talents who feel challenged to expand and bring impact to business development in a leader’s role. This program is equipped with competency and leadership development, to be prepared for filling managerial posts and placed in business operational areas spread across Indonesia. The program, which comprises three phases with evaluation on the last phase, offers various benefits such as faster career path, and chance of enrolling career development program. 

In November 2016, the first batch of Operational Management Trainee (OMT) was initiated, focusing on bachelor degree holders aged maximum 24 years with minimum GPA of 3.00 and having values of I AM ELITE (Innovative, Accountable, Mastery, Excellence, Leadership, Integrity, Teamwork, Enthusiasm) and problem solving, also possessing great interest to expand social network and are active in organization.

After passing tight selection process by talent acquisition team, the chosen applicants (trainees) will follow a 12-month of training period comprehensively, such as soft skills and hard skills, to in-class experience at the Head Office and on the job training at various business units of Kawan Lama Group, such as ACE, INFORMA, and Toys Kingdom. Completing the program, there are also various outdoor sessions, such as character building activities and distribution center visit. Up to the mid year of 2023, the OMT program has resulted 12 batches and recently the 13th is running. 

In the retail world, besides the operational field, merchandising also grabs a vital role and is required as the front guard because of its part in buying and developing products regarding the latest market trends and customers’ needs, including pricing strategy, displaying products / visual merchandising, to promotional strategy as the way to achieve sales target.

Looking at the success story of the OMT program, Kawan Lama Group then released Merchandising Management Trainee (MMT) in November 2021. If OMT is focused on becoming employee stationed at the store of ACE, INFORMA, Toys Kingdom, etc., MMT is focused to fill merchandiser positions at the Head Office, like as a buyer, inventory planner, or category management.

The trainees were trained for 12 months, where they got knowledge and experience sharing regarding business process, merchandising management, and leadership. Moreover, they were also given directions and accompaniment from experienced merchandisers through project assignment that requires the trainees to make innovation projects and then tested as the graduation requirement. After successfully passing all training programs, 14 trainees from the initial batch celebrated the graduation ceremony in December 2022. Following the first batch, the 2nd batch finished in February 2023.

Lukni, OMT batch 2 trainee who has become Store Operation Manager of ACE, said, " OMT Program of Kawan Lama Group does not merely give excellent learning, but also systematically gives an understanding and experience to become a future leader who has courage, adaptable in every circumstance, smart in making strategy and innovating, also has great technical ability and analytical thinking."

Same appreciation comes from Desmonda, MMT batch 1 trainee who is now a Buyer of INFORMA, “MMT program that I enrolled makes me more understand about business process end-to-end, especially in merchandising. Besides knowledge, this MMT program makes me ready emotionally and in soft skill, to work and prepare myself to be a future leader.”

Sandra Hardjana, Human Capital Director of Kawan Lama Group, stated, “In line with Kawan Lama Group’s fast business growth, we are facing the challenge of how to fulfill and develop competent human resources as an important key factor in the organization, either for today's need and for future business leaders. Starting from the culture of human centric and ever learning organization, we facilitate and boost every employee to keep developing themselves. Not just feel satisfied with today’s achievements, but continuously learning new things and creating innovations. Therefore, every employee also participates in giving maximum contributions to the business growth of Kawan Lama Group. Another challenge is how we can get competent young talents for supporting sustainable business, by keeping the proper character and value. For this, we do various programs, starting from regular recruitment, internship that cooperates with various educational institutions or learning communities, and acceleration programs through Management Trainee. Kawan Lama Group ensures that the presence of its various business units is a token of the commitment to always bring value for a better life.”