Champion idea for workplace skills

first_imgChampion idea for workplace skillsOn 1 Jan 2002 in Personnel Today Related posts:No related photos. An attempt to boost work-based training and skills levels has been launchedby the DfES and NTO National Council. The Employer Champions Group met for the first time last month. It willadvise Government, the Learning and Skills Council and the emerging SectorSkills Development Agency on how to promote NVQs and the national occupationalstandards on which they are based. Senior employers put forward by the NTOnetwork and champions nominated by the CBI and TUC make up the group. It ischaired by Hugh Try CBE, deputy chairman of Galliford Try, chairman of the CITBand member of the LSC’s Adult Committee. “There’s not enough knowledge and use of national occupationalstandards and the qualifications leading from them,” said Try. “If wecould only make a wider group of employers aware of their existence andpotential, it would help to raise productivity and competitiveness.” According to Try, there is no shortage of champions who are enthusiasticabout national occupational standards. The aim is to reach the uninformed.”There’s a real head of steam and enthusiasm among people who are in theknow. The problem is extending that to others,” he said. “It’s a matter of putting together a convincing case – with realindustry situations – to get through to employers. This is a job of sufficientimportance that the DfES has agreed it will continue under the new sectorskills arrangements.” Bert Clough, senior training adviser at the TUC, hopes the work of the groupwill help boost the number of training programmes which are based on recognisedoccupational standards leading to NVQs. “We’re particularly interested inincreasing the number of people going through to NVQ level 2 – that’s where theproblem is. “About a third of the workforce are in jobs which have requiredcompetences at that level, but the vast majority have no qualifications whichattest their skills and competence. This limits individuals’ career paths andreduces labour mobility.” Clough said the time is right for an employer champions group. Its formationcoincides with proposals in the Chancellor’s pre-budget report for employer taxcredits to support training to level 2, and comes ahead of tighter regulationsexpected in some areas of employment which will require qualification to level2 as a minimum. “The likelihood of tax incentives and regulation makes the job mucheasier,” said Clough. “Awareness of standards is of nationalimportance. If employers train not to national occupational standards but tomeet their own narrow needs, there will be a lack of transferable skills, moreskills gaps and skills shortages.” By Elaine Essery Comments are closed. Previous Article Next Articlelast_img read more