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SME Gold Standard Skills

Pipette and test tubesCogent are developing a bespoke approach for Small and Medium sized Enterprises (SMEs) which will increase employer investment in skills and raise professional standards through the use of the Gold Standard competency framework.

Full Summary

The Cogent project aims to develop a bespoke approach for SMEs to increase employer investment in skills and raise professional standards across the sector through the use of the ‘Gold Standard’ competency framework.  The Gold Standard competency framework is a tool to help employers assess the capabilities of their employers.

The solution will develop and deploy a web-based skills assurance process that allows companies to engage with and gain assurance from the Gold Standard.  Employers will also gain access to an on-line shop enabling them to purchase Gold Standard Solutions in the form of qualifications and training through accredited providers.

By extending take up of the competency framework to SMEs the Gold Standard will become a voluntary Licence to Practise that improves the quality and professionalism of the sector.   By 2017 the sector will have over 1,000 SMEs pledged to the Gold Standard.
The aim is to increase training in SMEs by £100 per employee by 2015.

Return on Investment

  • Employer sign up or pledge of 200 SMEs per year
  • Engage with 10% of the SME population in the Science‐based industries each year
  • An increased SME investment in skills of £475,000 per annum with a long term aim of £5m per annum
  • Increased uptake of Gold Standard training and qualifications from 950 by 2012 and 2,850 by year in 2013
  • 10,000 courses being delivered by 2017

UK Commission investment:  £612,968
Employer Investment:  £475,000
Employer in-kind investment: £40,000

Further Information
For more information about this project please contact:
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