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Awarding and End-point Assessment Solutions






Why Skillsfirst?


Learner First

Like our customers, the learner is at the heart of everything we do.  Together we do all we can to help them succeed.

Our People

Our friendly and approachable team have an in-depth understanding of the world of work-based learning. They are the people which make the difference to our customers on a daily basis.

Responsive

The needs of the UK economy are ever-evolving. We work with employers and sector experts to develop products and services that help learners find, sustain and progress in employment.  

Your Expectations

You require excellent service, products and systems that meet your needs. We offer all of the above and more.

Don't just take our word for it...

As a company we approached Skillsfirst Awards to support the designing of new courses. We first met to discuss our ideas which Skillsfirst were keen to hear. It was such a valued experience as both companies had different ideas which resulted in some amazing qualifications being created. Whenever we had any questions Skillsfirst were able to answer and provide guidance. We look forward to continuing working with Skillsfirst in the future.

 

Sandy Silvester
Busy Bees Education and Training

BT has received fantastic service from all the team at Skillsfirst, without doubt the best customer service I have seen from an awarding organisation in the last 5 years. Accommodating, forward thinking, mindful of the individual needs and above all clear support and guidance from all the team.

Jacqui Celino
BT Openreach

On all occasions I have needed to contact Skillsfirst, all the staff have been very helpful and polite. In this day and age, I feel not enough praise is given where due to people that deserve it, or at least, it is not mentioned in person.  Your team supply one of the best customer experiences I have had the pleasure to come across and I would really appreciate it if you could pass this on.  With many thanks, from a very happy customer.

 

Tony Woodward
City College Plymouth

Skillsfirst News & Twitter


Sustainability in the workplace - how do employees really feel?

It's no secret that sustainability has become one of the most popular topics. We asked 135 people about sustainability in the workplace and the results will shock you. The United Nations defined sustainability as meeting the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. They have developed Sustainable Development Goals(SDGs) as a blueprint to achieve a better and more sustainable future for all.? There are 17 goals in total ranging from clean water & sanitation to responsible consumption & production and climate action. But, it's not just policy-makers and United Nations representatives that have the responsibility to be more sustainable. We all have to do our part to look after our planet. The SDGs are applicable to how we live every day to make more sustainable choices. And, that includes at work. So, we asked 135 people from a range of sectors and job levels how they feel about sustainability in the workplace, the impact they wanted to have and how much they knew about the SDGs. 1. People feel more personal responsibility for sustainable practices at home than they do at work The overwhelming majority said they either agreed or strongly agreed that they feel responsible for saving energy and reducing waste. But, there were clear discrepancies showing how much more accountable they felt in their own homes. In fact, there was a 20% gap in those surveyed who strongly agreed they were responsible at home and those that strongly believed they were responsible at work. 2. Sustainability practices are a major factor when choosing a workplace To many, sustainability is no longer a buzzword.?In fact, half of those asked felt that sustainability practices would influence their decision to work for a business. This echoes research showing that strong and clear actions for the environment are increasingly important for employees 3. Companies do have dedicated staff responsible for sustainability (but that's not enough) Encouragingly, half of respondents said that their companies did have a dedicated sustainability role within their workplace. Showing that organisations are beginning to prioritise sustainability as a key function within the workplace. As encouraging as this may be, 51% noted that they either didn't know if they had sustainability resource or their company didn't have it at all. Furthermore, when asked if their employer does enough for the environment, there was an almost 50/50 split between those who agree and disagree. So, although there is appetite for more sustainable practices in the workplace, employers still have a way to go to satisfy it. 4. Few people know about the United Nation's Sustainability Development Goals (SDGs) but those that do are confident they can implement them Only 9% of respondents are aware of all 17 SDGs with the remaining having little to no knowledge. Of those that are aware of the goals, the majority (85%) know how they can embed this within their workplace. The direct correlation between awareness of the SDGs and the knowledge to install sustainable practices in the workplace is a significant one. This suggests that one of the biggest barriers to a more sustainable workplace is simply a lack of knowledge. What does this mean for my employees and me? It is clear that knowing where to begin with sustainability is a critical issue. An issue that can only be resolved by implementing strategies for company-wide knowledge of sustainable practices and the SDGs. Skillsfirst are delighted to be working with The Sustainability Academy?to develop a Level 2 Certificate in Embedding Sustainability in the Workplace, with resources available at discounted prices. To register your interest, please contact us at workwithus@skillsfirst.co.uk.



VTCT acquires Skillsfirst

We are delighted to announce that Skillsfirst has been acquired by the VTCT charitable group of companies.   This exciting move combines the strengths of both organisations and will enable us to further enhance the products and services we can offer to our customers and learners.   VTCT is a specialist awarding and assessment organisation, working in partnership with more than 2,000 approved centres worldwide.   Alan Woods OBE, Chief Executive of VTCT, said,   “We were keen to ensure Skillsfirst joined the VTCT group of companies because it’s highly respected in the assessment and awarding sector and with the employers, centres and learners they serve. Crucially, Skillsfirst also shares our values and ambitions, emphasising quality assurance, learner success, employer recognition and exceptional customer service. We will protect and develop the Skillsfirst brand and ethos whilst ensuring it meets our charitable objectives.”     “This widening of our group structure aligns with our growth strategy to continue the development of our portfolio. This strategy includes working more widely in the independent training provider market and working more directly with employers, particularly supporting apprenticeships and functional skills, where we already partner with Skillsfirst. We are incredibly excited about the strong innovation profile that Skillsfirst brings, evidenced by its remote proctoring solution for functional skills assessments and working with nationally recognised companies in the Early Years and Care workforce. We hope to develop that offer further by deploying significant financial resources to support customers and learners to achieve their goals. We are also delighted that all the existing Skillsfirst Team will remain within the organisation. ”    “We are confident that by bringing together Skillsfirst, iTEC and VTCT as a charitable group, we will be able to enhance further the experience offered to learners while continuing to provide the excellent service our approved centres expect from us.”    “We would like to assure both Skillsfirst and iTEC/VTCT approved centres that there will be no interruption to your service, and you will continue to be supported as usual in the best way possible by your usual team. Should you have any queries about this, please speak to your Skillsfirst or VTCT contact, who will be happy to help you with any questions you may have.”    Myra Wall, Managing Director of Skillsfirst, said,   “Since establishing Skillsfirst in 2009, the business has been dedicated to providing an outstanding level of quality and service to our customers and learners. From our humble beginnings, I am incredibly proud that over 500k people have now achieved a Skillsfirst qualification and we are privileged to work with many leading employers and providers.   I have no doubt that joining the VTCT charitable group of companies will enable Skillsfirst to grow and continue to build on its success.”



EPA Surgeries 2022

We’re pleased to share the dates for our End-point Assessment Surgeries for 2022.  We have planned sector specific surgeries, which will offer support to our customers, covering the following areas: Updates on standards, Share areas of good practice, Highlight common trends identified.  To find out more or to book a space, please visit our End-point Assessment page and select Sugeries.



LGBT workshop dates 2022

We know that time is something we just dont have enough of! So to try and make planning ahead a little easier, we've published all our LGBT Train the Trainer workshops dates for 2022.  To find out more and to book your place, simply visit our qualifications page and select workshops.



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