This month's news roundup.
Byers voices concern at training past
The UK’s history of supporting training is not something to be proud of, Secretary of State for Trade & Industry Stephen Byers said last month.
He was speaking at Putting Training at the Heart of Business, a one-day conference organised by Training and The Industrial Society as part of the TD2000 campaign.
He said employers need to invest more in training to remain competitive and meet the challenge of the new economy. "The first industrial revolution required investment in plant and machinery. The new revolution based on knowledge requires an investment in training," he said.
Byers said many employers have cut their spending on training and reduced the time off for staff to develop skills. "This is a matter of great concern," he added.
New Deal report
The Training Standards Council has published the first inspection reports on the New Deal initiative. TSC chief inspector David Sherlock said although the New Deal has made a good start and is general well regarded by participants, more work still needs to be done on the way the initiative is managed on the ground. He added, "Employment outcomes from the options should be better than they usually are."
The reports are available at www.tsc.gov.uk
BT has become the first major company to announce a decision to use and network UfI learning materials across its entire organisation. Employees will have access to UfI’s learning materials alongside BT’s own training materials as part of the BT Academy from the autumn when UfI goes into full national operation.
A one-month TV campaign by UfI’s learndirect brand started on 19 March. The £5m campaign is aimed at stimulating demand for learning.
The three adverts will reach 86 per cent of the TV viewing population of England, Wales and Northern Ireland.
Learning at Work Day
This year’s Learning at Work Day will take place on Thursday 25 May. As well as encouraging employers to organise the usual "learning lunch hours" and workplace reading groups, this year’s event will incorporate a National Job Swap Day organised in conjunction with totaljobs.com.
For more information see www.campaign-for-learning.org.uk or contact the Learning a