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Wed September 30 2020

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Five ways to make your training budget stretch further

6 Jul 11 Nigel Donohue, Head of Business Development Services at the National Construction College, understands that training can be a challenge for many businesses in the current climate, but if companies wish to remain competitive it is more important than ever.

1. Identify the training needs of employees – In the first instance, assess the training needs of your managers using a tool such as the National Construction College’s (NCC) Leadership and Management Diagnostics tool. The unique web-based programme provides managers with a simple online self-complete questionnaire. Once completed, a report will be prepared which gives business advice on the courses that will bridge any skills gaps that have been identified within your company and potentially inhibit competitiveness. It is useful and cost-effective for businesses to properly identify the training needs of their business before investing in training programmes.

2. Apprenticeships – Apprenticeships are simply the lifeblood of our industry. They offer young people the best route into the industry while supporting the business that employs them. The return on their investment is well documented and they will ensure the industry avoids future skills gaps, particularly as most training is now demand led. It’s imperative that employers take advantage of the full grant allocation and work with excellent training providers with the highest achievement rates to ensure their apprentices are the very best.

3. Refresher Training – With new challenges, such as low carbon, emerging technologies, construction methods and changes to legislation and regulations, it is essential that your workforce has the right skills and knowledge. Industry’s clients are getting more demanding and to win more contracts skills will take a top priority. For us, one of the key refresher areas is Health and Safety, where our courses are designed  to support, build and develop understanding and implementation of health and safety practice -  bringing new legislative requirements to the foreground. They’re cost effective and help businesses ensure their workers are operating to best practice and updated ways of working.

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4. On-site training - Any confident, knowledgeable and fully trained team has many benefits, including increased motivation and productivity. They make fewer mistakes, are at a lower risk of accidents and make businesses run a better profit through their efficiency and ability to offer better to solutions to problems. Training courses provided close to or at your business, such as the unique and bespoke training provided by the NCC, ensure that time is not wasted away from the workplace and that staff travel costs are kept to a minimum.

5. Online training – Online training is a great way to provide standardised teaching to large groups and offers flexibility as well as affordability. In some instances it is even preferred, to limit time away from the workplace and can be done at a time that is suitable to workers. The NCC will be launching a Learner Management System in May 2011 which will deliver a range of online content, structured e-learning programmes and the ability for employers to monitor the progress of their apprentices with the College online. 

The National Construction College (NCC) is the largest construction training provider in Europe. It provides training to both young apprentices and adult students for a wide range of specialist courses, which are delivered by experienced instructors at the College’s eight campuses across the country, providing training for up to 30,000 learners each year.  

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