Max SkillFirst

Rajender Sud

Chief Executive Officer

Anshuman Kamthan

VP & Key Account Manager- Max Bupa

Pushkar Saran

SVP & Head- Business Operations & Strategy

Sarika Swarup

VP & Head- Content

Simardeep Kaur

VP & Head - Human Resources

Sudhir Nair

VP & Key Account Manager - Max Healthcare

Sunil Solanki

VP & Key Account Manager - Max Life

Max SkillFirst Limited (Max SkillFirst) is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Max India, founded with the vision of impacting the sales and service culture in India by being the most admired learning and development organisation. The Company employs 470 professionals and over 424 freelance trainers.

FY2019 Highlights

  • In FY2019, Max SkillFirst imparted over 3.9 lakh hours of training to more than 1 lakh learners through 90,000+ sessions to both Max Group and other accounts.
  • Max SkillFirst received the prestigious ‘Great Place To Work’ certification from the Great Place To Work Institute, India.
  • During the fiscal, the Company reported revenues worth ` 52.9 crore (17% increase over FY2018) with Loss After Tax of ` 2.5 crore mainly due to impairment provision for investment held in Max SkillFirst’s fully owned subsidiary, Max One (without impairment, Profit After Tax is ` 3.1 crore).
  • Some of the Max SkillFirst’s key financial ratios have changed significantly (more than 25%) in FY 2019 (without considering the impairment impact). For instance, debt to equity ratio (Loan/ Shareholders Fund) changed from -3.8 last year to -9.7 this year due to change in shareholders’ fund because of positive net profits (without impairment) this year. Similarly, Return on Net Worth (Net Profit/Shareholders Fund) has also changed from -45% last year to -157% due to change in shareholders’ fund because of positive net profits this year (without impairment). Operating profit Margin (Operating Profit/Operating Revenue) changed from 5.3% to 7.1% this year due to increase in operating profit on account of reduction in operations cost.

Content as Business Driver

Max SkillFirst has developed over 1,560 hours of content across all accounts by using instructional design principles and leveraging technology and innovation to create high business impact. Some of the accounts for which the Company curated content in FY2019 are as follows:

Max Life: Developed customised content for different channels – Agency, Insurance Marketing Firm (IMF), Customer Advisory Team (CAT), e-Commerce, Associate Partner Channel (APC) and Defence Channel in different formats, via classroom sessions, videos, simulation role plays, etc.

MBHI: Created e-learning content through videos for a mobile app and e-assessment modules on Health Recharge, Health Companion, Upselling and Cross-selling, and HDFC Net Banking for different channels – agency, bancassurance, Direct Sales Team (DST), tele-sales and renewals

MHC: Customised content by incorporating stakeholder’s feedback and by adopting diagnostic methodology and infographics for need-based and frequently occurring scenarios for nursing, front office, Max Lab and pharmacy

B2B: Structured content for higher retention through e-learning platforms on topics such as sales and leadership skills, business processes and common induction programmes.

B2C: Created the Allied Healthcare lab technician digital course on the app with 100+ in-house learning videos and assessments


In FY2019, Max SkillFirst App-based self-learning modules and online knowledge assessment were launched for 1,700+ Agency Development Managers (ADMs), out of which more than 80% have successfully completed either one or more courses at Max Life. To replace classroom training for IC38 examination (IRDAI conducts IC38 examination and only successful candidates become agents) and Selling Skills Workshop (SSW) trainings for candidates and agents, respectively, at select offices, an initiative called ‘Prayas’ was launched to make these available online through the app. Through the CAT channel of Max Life, the Company launched online tests for producers and leaders, which were attempted by 80% of the users. At India Shelter, a leading housing finance company in the NBFC sector, an automated Interactive Voice Response (IVR) feedback mechanism through mobile calls was launched in October 2018 across all channels.

The Company also won the Brandon Hall Group Excellence Awards 2018 for the third year in a row – a Silver Award in the category of ‘Best Use of Blended Learning’ for 3D Smart Classroom for best-in-class user experience and learning in Allied Healthcare Diploma Programme. These awards, often called the ‘Academy Awards of Learning’, are the most prestigious global awards in the learning and development domain and recognises the top organisations across the world.

People Culture

The organisation grew by 34% in terms of the headcount from 350 employees to 470 employees in FY2019. As part of its people-first culture, Max SkillFirst continued to build on the 4Cs of the Employee Value Proposition (EVP) – Career, Certification, Culture and Compensation. To drive the values, the Company strengthened the valuebased Reward and Recognition (R&R) programme through a technology platform called Karma Notes where the organisation recorded more than 1,500 recognitions for its employees. Also, a communication series called ‘Above & Beyond’ was introduced to recognise the success stories of employees who demonstrate our core values – Excellence, Credibility, Sevabhav, Collaboration and Innovation.

In order to strengthen the quality of talent hired and link it to our EVP of 4Cs, the Company re-trained all the hiring managers on the methodology of value-based hiring and also launched a value-based psychometric tool for hiring and development of talent. Max SkillFirst launched a structured Organisation & Talent Review (OTR) for all the high performers (110 employees) with the objective of nurturing the future talent pipeline and developing key talent for retention and engagement. Through this process, a total of 30 ‘Best Bets’ were identified. Their future career path was clearly mapped and they were given visibility about their next-level career role with clearly defined Individual Development Plan (IDPs).

New Training Initiatives

In FY2019, the Associate Partner Channel (APC) and Defence Channel trainings of Max Life were acquired and training roadmaps for these accounts were integrated and rolled out. Max SkillFirst supported the MLIC Agency in its ‘office-in-office’ and greenfield initiatives by hiring 86 new trainers as a part of its proprietary channel expansion plan. Max SkillFirst launched a vintage-based learning roadmap for front office and nursing personnel to equip them with role-specific challenges for MHC. Max SkillFirst on-boarded six new partners at the Bancassurance Channel of MBHI – HDFC Bank, HDFC Security Limited (HSL), HDFC Tele, Karur Vysya Bank, Ujjivan and Rattan India.

New Growth Initiatives

The Company entered into an exclusive partnership with Cohen Brown, an international leader whose courseware and tools have been utilised in more than 50 countries and translated into 15 languages, to deliver its leader-led and technology-enabled trainings through the ProPractice tool in prospective banks in India. Cohen Brown specialises in sales-and-service, cultural and behavioural change consultative and training processes for management, frontline, support/customer service units, and call centres.

Max SkillFirst also signed a three-year contract with India Shelter as the second external B2B client. In the B2C Allied Healthcare business, the Company launched its second direct-to-customer training facility of in FY2019 at Saket and also successfully achieved the student enrolment targets.


Max SkillFirst has prepared itself to grow through different channels. After demonstrating success in the captive business from the Max Group, the Company is now gearing up to capture training assignments for both B2B and B2C markets externally. Max SkillFirst will also open the third B2C Allied Healthcare Centre in FY2020 to achieve growth in the financial year. In addition, the Company will grow aggressively in the financial services industry in India, with its exclusive partnership with Cohen Brown. The Company will also foray further into the B2C sector with imparting tech-led skills training.

Max SkillFirst receives the prestigious “Great Place to Work” certification from the Great Place to Work Institute, India