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IiP support service available online

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Not so much a 'paperchase': Investors in People can be more of a virtual experience thanks to a new online service launched by Business Link Kent.

The new service, called 'Laurel Online', offers the chance to assess your organisation's initial position and progress towards the qualification 24 hours a day, by providing help with tailoring your staff questionnaires and interviews, reviewing and setting objectives and targets. There are online forms to complete and example pages to view. There's also an e-mail service, offering remote electronic mentoring from an adviser, although it's not all done at a distance - there are regular visits from a personal adviser as well. Business Link Kent have also put together a clever CDRom business card-style presentation, giving a breakdown of the service available.

The service has been launched to help support the growing number of small organisations in Kent which are looking to work towards the IiP standard. 200 small businesses in the area have already achieved the qualification.

Speaking at the launch of the new service, Nick Stuart, a DfEE representative said that the Laurel Online approach echoed the government's push to create more learning opportunities online, through initiatives such as learndirect. He added that a national steering group would start to look at developing the concept of the new service elsewhere.

Laurel Online costs £1,500 to access, £500 of which is refundable if IiP status is achieved within 12 months. For further information about the Laurel Online service, contact Michelle Noakes or Lorraine Maidment (tel. 01732 878 546/493).


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