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Should I link to accredited training?


Has anyone got any experience of swapping from unaccredited in-house training to transfering all training to accredited training/qualifications.
Vicki Hodge

18 Responses

  1. Arian Associates Ltd
    Non-Accredited training doesn’t always sit well with people, as they can not always transfer it from one organisation to another so going down the route of looking at accredited training is a good one. You can either outsource to a training provider or college or instead of outourcing look at becoming an accredited centre yourself ? The accreditation yourself may not be a practical option for your organisation, but is certain to be less expensive in the long run than paying for outsourced stuff.

  2. Accreditation
    Go with accreditation if it fits in with the learning outcomes required and the provider tells you how to take what you already have to achieve the accreditation you are after and not the other way around.

    I found OCR extremely helpful some years ago in that they accredited a Telebusiness programme based on the business and learning outcomes required.

    They knew what we wanted and explained how we would get accreditation via assessments, portfolios and project work.

    At the time they were the only provider to help us work with our programme to achieve accreditation. All the others wanted us to do generic NVQ’s and the like so the delegates would have ended up doing 30% of the programme with no relevance to their role.

    All the best


  3. Accrediting Bodies
    Can depend on your subject topic are in selecting the most appropriate Body. The Open College network, The Institute of Admistrative Management, NCFE, as well as OCR and Edexcel will all consider accrediting work based training (all on www). But you will need to consider: issues of assessment and how this can be managed, the volume of participants – how expensive are the set up costs: the motivation ofthe participants and client to pay the fees.


  4. Accreditation is the way to go
    Accreditation can attract and keep the best people for longer. You would need to consider the workload as this is important with work/life balance and how long the qualification should be. If you choose accreditation make sure you work with an awarding body as they have the ability to customise it for your business while still providing the individual a valuable award.

  5. Accreditation
    To a certain degree I agree with Nick Hindley on this.However accreditation can show that personal development is taken seriously. There are not always suitable accredited courses available, and if you have courses that work well then getting them accredited can be more cost effective than outsourcing accredited training providers. Ourlocal Open College Network were very helpful with accreditation of our programmes. They also have unit banks which you can access which,(depending on what you are looking for) helps if you are running many courses. The process is fairly straight forward. Best of luck with it all

  6. Accrediting in-house training
    There is a route, offered by the Institute of Leadership and Management (ILM), which is worth considering.

    Where an organisation has developed, or is developing an in-house programme a proposal can be made to ILM to have it accredited as an Endorsed Award or a Development Award.

    There is no need for the organisation to be accredited as a Centre in this case: it is accredited as a Provider at a much lower level of external verification.

    More at

  7. Note of caution
    While I agree the benefits of accrediting training from the recipient’s point of view are good.

    I’d just like to add the cautionary note that by using accredited training you can be preparing your staff for better paid jobs elsewhere in a much simpler manner than the same course but without accreditation would do.

    But if you’ve decided to go for it then there are plenty of bodies out there that will do a similar thing to the ILM and endorse courses that don’t necessarily follow a standard qualification route and therefore enable you to customise your training offering to suit the needs of your business rather than the awarding body.

  8. Accredited training leads to exit?
    The notion of individuals exiting an organisation once they have a qualification via accredited training is a common one.

    My own experience is that if you design a comprehensive programme links to performance and progression over time you can overcome this.

    A call centre programme I designed was accredited and lead to the reduction oin turnover of team leaders from 40% p.a. to 4% p.a. over an 18 month period. This reduced rate continued as team leaders appreciated the development and many gained promotions from their improved performance.


  9. Accredited training +/-
    I agree with both Nick and Nik’s points. Accreditation gives added value to your in-house programme from a candidate’s viewpoint but staff retention demands a whole raft of staff development strategies, not least some level of assurance that appropriate acquired learning within such strategies offers opportunities for advancement.

    if the current employer can’t fufil such an obligation within a reasonable timescale then the training may decay unless the employee moves on.

    It’s a difficult decision for both parties but my ultimate view is that no training should be withheld for fear of losing good staff. In the wider market, turnover is healthy momentum.

  10. Accreditation
    Vicki you do not say anything about the nature or size of your organisation. Going for accreditaion may seem expensive and the assessment/verification procedures too complex to a small organisation, where a larger organisation would deal with the workload more easily. This might determine whether to go down the in-house route or move towards outsourcing. The nature of the training is also an important factor. As for staff turnover in these days where employability is important, a lack of recognised training can be a powerful motivation to change jobs, where providing training and having appropriate reward systems and progression strategies can a provide motivation to stay.

  11. Talk to your Sector Skills Council

    It is most definitely worth looking into accreditation. I would suggest you contact you sectors, Sector Skills Council. Their role is to represent employers to the government on skills issues. SSCs are the guardians of the National Occupation Standards for their sectors and from the NOS all publicly funded/nationally recognised qualifications fall. SSCs sit above awarding bodies and approve qualifications. They are the new (reasonably) kids on the block some of their work was done by Training Boards, they are there to help you with skills issues. To find to the SSC representing your industry take a look on They form part of a network of 24 soon to be 25 Skills for Business Network, they can advise you on ways to move forward.

    What you could for example do, is have your existing training mapped to National Occupation Standards – this will show where your existing training programmes sit against the standard for the job role. If this identifies gaps (if any) then decide what you want to do and if the cost of filling the gaps is worth it. Another positive is – once mapped you can go to an awarding body and become a registered accreditation centre or you could work in partnership with a FE college or Work-based training provider, who can do the assessment work (independently) in the workplace. It is possible they can assess at a low cost because you can do the training and they (provider) could draw funding. If the assessment is robust enough then you also have the benefit of good Transfer of the Learning to the Workplace evaluation as a bonus too. Ask provider to use the assess-train-assess model, they assess your staff, identify the gaps, you train to fill the gaps, they come back and assess. Its assessment of competency so that can help you in other ways too!
    In terms of awarding bodies it might be worth looking at which have credibility in your sector, not all will have currency with employees. Finally remember awarding bodies are in business too, if you are looking at large numbers they may be prepared to look at the mapping exercise.
    You do not say which sector you work in; I work for the SSC for Hospitality Leisure Travel & Tourism industries People 1st. Drop me an email and I will answer /advise/signpost you further.

  12. Get a Customised Qualification

    You can now get your own customised qualification which links to your own business needs. If successful you could end up with a BTEC i.e. Company name BTEC Award in X. We work with Edexcel to help organisations achieve these customised qualifications.

    You can of course also access off-the-shelf qualifications such as BTEC Professional Management Qualifications, BTEC Award in Customer Service etc. These programmes referenced also have e-Learning materials linked to them.

    The argument for accredited programmes are very strong. For example you can audit your staff against a proven nationally recognised qualification and reward the learners for their efforts. Also why reinvent the wheel – these qualifications have been developed with industry to reflect the skills requirements against the discipline such as management. The suggestion that they may leave to go to other organisations is short sighted – if the other elements in the organisation are right then they will want to stay. To not invest in your staff in case they go elsewhere is not a good reason and will effect the competiveness of the organisation.


    Joe Quilter

  13. Value of accreditation??
    Accreditation is only of value if it is recognised and valued by people “that matter”.

    Only this last week I have had discussions with the Institute of Administrative Management and the Chartered Management Institute about accreditation. What a palaver, what a lot of hassle and to what end!?!

    I am impressed by the wide range of qualifications that many people have and the variety of combinations of letters after people’s names within the TrainingZone. Unfortunately, most are quiet meaningless to me. Having spent over five years in recruitment working with highly educated people in a highly specialised industry, I know some of the qualifications and their relevance in the areas I have been recruiting but new ones spring up all the time.

    Further accreditations are only going to complicate things further.

    There is nothing to stop me producing a whizzy certificate on my PC and adding some credible letters to my CV or after my name. Most people would be none the wiser.

    It may be worth thinking about what the accreditation is for and what it is going to achieve before going all out to get courses accredited.

  14. Value of accreditation!!
    Robin’s is a remarkably cynical view of accreditation. If it’s based on real experience, that’s a worry for anyone involved in standards, their delivery, assessment and verification.

    I would agree, however, that post-nominals without those four important elements are worthless.

    I’m only happy that my own are well covered!

  15. Woohoo! More letters
    Thank you for your comments, John. Apologies if my reply came over as cynical – that wasn’t my intention.

    Please consider the realism of what I am saying. A quick trawl through a few members of this forum gives a remarkable spectrum of qualifications and letters. Does anyone really know what they all are, what they stand for, their relevance and their value? If I don’t know as an experienced recruiter I would challenge anyone to be able to answer this honestly.

    Just to add a further dimension to this discussion. I received a letter and certificate through the post today informing me that I can add RICR after my name. Comments (not congratulations) would be gratefully received!!

  16. Accreditation – the value
    Accreditation has two distinct values to you as a trainer and in the market place.

    Firstly you can establish how your own materials and delivery standards compare to a defined set of standards set by an external body which is recognised by the market as reputable.

    The type and name of the body should fit with your own aspirations and the potential market place you wish to operate.

    For example if you are running leadership programmes the Institute of Leadership and Management (ILM) could be the one for you?

    This organisation provided the NEBBS management training accreditation for organisations and competent HR and training managers will have heard of either NEBBS or ILM or both as they are considered to be market leaders in relation to supervisor and first line manager training standards.

    This highlights the second value which is that you do have some visible evidence of your standards which can be confirmed by potential clients.

    If those you work with do not know what your specific accreditations stand for they can just check with the governing body. This position has to be better than just stating that you are marvellous with no back up standards?

    In addition, and prior to any accreditation, you need to have solid client testimonials which say that you can do what you state you can.

    This covers another potential criticism of accreditation which is – do your letters of accreditation mean you can actually deliver?

    All the best.


  17. Accreditation: the value
    I applaud Nick Hindley’s strong support of accreditation, which mirrors my own views.

    However, I should correct one impression.

    NEBS Management, like the parrot, is “no more”. ILM is the result of a merger between NEBS and ISM (the old Institute for Supervision and Management) and brings together the best of both but with a much broader portfolio of programmes and level of support for in-house programme accreditation. provides all the information on ILM’s current offerings and future developments.


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