A Tampa, Fla., painting contractor is reaping the benefits of a new in-house training program. Instruction at Specialized Painting Services includes proper painting techniques, Spanish or English classes, computer training, and customer service skills. “The system that we've created with the help of consultants,” says president Dan Martucci, “can be modified to fit most service organizations, and provides our employees with a chance to better themselves professionally and personally.”

To accommodate the training, the company added a 100-person classroom and boardroom. The training begins with several sessions of 40 hours per week. Employees who finish the base program receive a certificate of completion and a diploma, and are given the opportunity to move to weekly continuing education courses.

Due to the training, Specialized Painting Services' margins have increased about 15%. The company is now expanding the learning center to accommodate the business's growth, and there are plans to someday open the center to other small- to medium-sized service organizations. For more information visit www.specializedpaintingservices.com.