Funding secured for new centre of excellence for retail
The National Skills Academy for Retail, in association with People 1st and the Hospitality Guild, has successfully won more than £500,000 through the Skills Funding Agency to develop a centre of excellence for retail in North London.
The centre will provide training in customer service across the retail and hospitality sectors. As well as hosting a range of training events, the centre will also be able to deliver training remotely through online courses.
Jane Rexworthy, director of Skills Solutions and head of NSA for Retail, said that by working together on the centre of excellence the retail and hospitality industries would gain “significant” benefits and ensure that programmes implemented had a greater impact. She added: “There are a lot of similarities between retail and hospitality and we face similar challenges when it comes to recruiting, training and retaining our staff.
“If we don’t do something to address our recruitment and training needs, our long-term security could be threatened. That is why we are working together – we know that we can combat these issues and, using the new facilities that the centre will provide, we can help drive forward training and development to make our industries stronger.”
The centre will feature a range of different spaces including seminar, meeting and office space, as well as a retail skills shop, and a training and demonstration kitchen.
Rebecca Murphy, human resources & marketing director of Goulds Stores and chair of the NSA for Retail advisory board added: “This is a fantastic opportunity for the service sector as a whole, and particularly for retail. The creation of a new centre of excellence will be a real boost to the National Skills Academy for Retail’s network of skills shops.”
The retail and hospitality industries play a major role in the UK economy, employing more than 15% of the UK’s total workforce.
The new training facility is due to open in the summer of 2013.
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