Skillnets Ltd. today called for Irish companies to come together to form training networks to address common training needs and benefit from a new round of grant funding to upskill their employees in 2010. Skillnets will co-fund training networks, with money from the National Training Fund (NTF), on a 50:50 basis with enterprises. The Skillnets Training Networks Programme (TNP) has been in operation since 1999, and has facilitated over 43,000 Irish enterprises to improve the range, scope and quality of training and allowed over 200,000 employees to upskill and meet their work related training needs.
In response to the changing economic climate and the employment profile of Irish enterprises, Skillnets has designed a new programme which continues to address increased productivity and competitiveness but focuses on workers mobility and employability, emerging priority sectors, company diversification/transferability into different sectors and key competencies/skills for European workers. A new feature of the Training Networks Programme (TNP) 2010 - 2011 is the provision of training for unemployed people. Unemployed individuals will train with those in employment, thereby enhancing their knowledge of current market trends in the sector/region and improving their potential for employment through training and networking. An application form and guidelines are available to download on the Skillnets website. The closing date for applications is 5 p.m. Monday 1st March. Successful training networks will be in operation at the beginning of April 2010.
Skillnets CEO Alan Nuzum stated “the development of people in organisations has contributed much to the economic success of recent years. The importance of using training to build organisational capacity which leads to a knowledge driven economy should never be underestimated. Knowledge and information are the key to today’s most advanced economies. Skillnets is endeavouring to proactively respond to industry needs by focusing on how we can facilitate the rapidly changing needs of employers through best practice training while simultaneously meeting the needs of the unemployed. The Training Networks Programme (TNP) 2010 – 2011 will help to ensure that we have a sufficiently proficient workforce for the growth sectors of the future.”
In a recent survey, 82% of member companies involved in the Skillnets Training Networks Programme (TNP) 2008 – 2009 stated that there was a positive impact on their competitiveness and 87% stated there was an impact on quality within their organisations. 78% of companies stated that the Training Networks Programme (TNP) was more flexible being enterprise-led and 82% felt the training provided was better suited to their business needs. The Skillnets model facilitates an enterprise-led approach to training and development through supporting the development of flexible and effective training delivery methods amongst those enterprises that previously had difficulty in accessing or benefiting from training. Skillnets supported 103 networks in 2009 with resources and expertise.
The Training Networks Programme (TNP) is an initiative of Skillnets Ltd. and is funded from the National Training Fund (NTF) through the Department of Enterprise, Trade & Employment (DETE).
Interviews: Alan Nuzum, CEO, Skillnets is available for interview.
Application form and guidelines available to download on www.skillnets.ie/funding2010.htm
For further information, contact: Sinéad McGovern
Tel: 01 2079630, Mobile: 086 3791330, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
NOTES TO EDITOR:
Skillnets Ltd, an enterprise-led publicly funded body, was established in 1999 to support the development of workplace skills and works with groups of companies across regions and sectors to provide quality training as a key element in sustaining Ireland's national competitiveness. In the last ten years, Skillnets has facilitated over 43,000 Irish enterprises, in over 300 networks to improve the range, scope and quality of training and allowed over 200,000 employees to up-skill and meet their work related training needs.
Skillnets is dedicated to up-skilling those in employment and in the Training Networks Programme (TNP) 2010/11 will also endeavour to reduce the rising unemployment levels nationwide by providing training to the unemployed.
Skillnets supports and funds networks of enterprises to engage in training under the Training Networks Programme (TNP). These enterprise networks are led and managed by the enterprises themselves to design, manage and deliver specific training programmes across a broad range of industry and service sectors nationwide. The Skillnet network programmes receive grants drawn from the National Training Fund (NTF) thereby enabling network member companies to avail of significant discounts on market training rates. The member companies also contribute to the grant aided programme with match funding to a ratio agreed by the network and Skillnets.
Skillnets' strategy is to support companies from all sectors in the economy to engage in training, but does so exclusively through networks of companies. This approach allows companies to achieve economies of scale, increase efficiency, lower costs and provide training that is more relevant to individual sectors or types of companies. There is also a significant benefit to be achieved through the sharing of business experience and advice via networking opportunities afforded by membership of a Skillnet. All training and development activities are supported and enterprises are given the ownership of all training strategies and plans to ensure they meet enterprise needs.
Key Strategic Themes of Training Networks Programme (TNP) 2010 - 2011
Theme 1: Facilitating the transferability of individuals’ skills to increase mobility and employability across mixed sectoral /regional networks.
The primary focus of this theme will be on up-skilling, re-skilling and cross skilling of workers across sectors and/or regions. Training delivered under this theme will promote the adoption of incremental skills which are required to facilitate increased mobility, employability and enhanced business performance of network members. This may involve sector specific or regional specific networks delivering transversal skills training for the employed and unemployed.
Theme 2: Facilitating company diversification or transferability within a sector or from one sector to another.
The primary focus of this theme will be facilitating the acquisition and transferability of skills to allow companies to diversify within their sector or to secure the transformational change of their business offering to a completely new sector. This will involve sectoral networks providing industry specific training for the employed and unemployed.
Theme 3: Facilitating increased performance and growth in priority sectors.
The primary focus of this theme will be on up-skilling individuals in the key skills necessary to enter into/expand within certain priority sectors which have been identified as high potential growth sectors. These networks will concentrate on specific sectors meeting the training needs of both the employed and unemployed.
Theme 4: Enhancing the general competency skills of the lifelong learner
The primary focus of this theme is the up-skilling of individuals in certain key competencies which have been identified by European policy as necessary skills for all European workers. This will involve sectoral and/or regional networks providing particular competency training for the employed and unemployed who may have been at an educational disadvantage.