Our Skills and Training Lead, George Swann gives advice on how to choose a good, and swerve a potentially poor training provider

Like it or loath it, people need training and there are a lot of training providers willing to take your money, some top quality and some not so good.  In every case training for work is a requirement of UK law, as a general duty of employers the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 states:

“the provision of such information, instruction, training and supervision as is necessary to ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, the health and safety at work of employees

As with all products and services it’s well worth shopping around and checking what you’re actually going to get for your money.  Always negotiate with training providers to get the best possible service, quality and price.

As an example, we recently received an offer that initially looked great and ideal for our staff, offering a bursary for early sign up.  But, on investigation the training equated to 40 hours of online tuition at £25 per hour per attendee, the attendee was required to identify a work based mentor and complete four hours of self-assessment exercises, as part of the 40, then two multi-choice answer tests online.  The outcome was an attendance certificate with no link to anything formally registered.  Get 40 students signed up for that per month and it’s a nice little earner with minimal overheads.

When you’re looking for training provision consider asking the following questions:

  1. Is this training linked to a formal outcome, a qualification on the Ofqual and/or QIW and/or the SQA register, if it’s stated it is, check it out its always worth requesting the reference:

Ofqual: Ofqual Formal Qualification Register

Wales: Qualifications in Wales

Scotland SQA: Scottish Qualification Authority Register

  1. Is there any funding available to support this training?
  2. Does this training require a renewal, if so, what is the criteria?
  3. Is there any follow up support?
  4. When will we receive the certificate(s)?
  5. Is there an appeals procedure, if so, what are the details?

FIS has a network of Approved Training Providers who have signed the FIS Code of Conduct and are subjected to an audit to ensure the service provided matches FIS members expectations.  If you feel unsure FIS will be happy to help by providing information, advice and guidance please call 0121 707 0077 or email info@thefis.org