This week’s training news

Low skills Europe

The head of the European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training
has warned that European skills levels are dangerously low. Johan Van Rens said
the lack of skills across the EU could jeopardise the ambitions of the European
Parliament and Commission. It is estimated that 34 per cent of 25-59 year olds
across Europe are classified as low skilled.

Merger is Smart move

Major names in the e-learning market, SmartForce and SkillSoft, are planning
to merge. The combined company will be structured as a merger of SkillSoft,
into a newly formed subsidiary of SmartForce. The combined group claims it will
be the largest corporate e-learning company in the world, offering more than 3,000
training courses.

Boots volunteers

High street retailer Boots has launched new certification that recognises
employee volunteering. The bespoke Certificate of Recognition as a Community
Associate is part of the performance management system and is awarded to staff
volunteering in company time. Successful candidates will be awarded with a
nationally accepted accreditation.

NHS offers e-learning

The NHS Information Authority is offering 200 current NHS trainers places on
an e-learning skills programme. The course is being organised by the Institute
of IT Training and will combine a one-day classroom session with three online
modules. The programme will enable the trainers to gain the Certificate in e-Tutoring
Skills and support staff engaged in online learning.

Training tops wishlist

Staff turnover levels in UK call centres largely reflect the amount of
investment in training, according to new research. Companies that invest in
continuous coaching and inductions are more effective at retaining employees.
The research, by Teleresources Consultancy, looked at 235 call centres around
the UK and found that training and development was second only to good working
conditions on the call centre workers’ wish list.

Kinko learning

Business solutions firm Kinko is introducing a new programme of blended
learning for its 20,000 staff. The firm has 1,100 offices, with four in the UK,
and the new system is designed to offer more flexibility than its current
classroom-based operation. Kinko will use Saba Learning to manage and deliver
its content and track training.

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