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Productivity and micro business

The Productivity Insights Network, funded by the Economic and Social research Council, have recently published a follow-up evaluation of a series of programmes designed to boost productivity (see _January19.pdf ). The initiatives under the microscope were all originally part of the UK Commission for Employment and Skills Future Programme. Looking at the report from […]

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Can policy be inspired by practice?

At the beginning of this week (19 November 2018) I had the great good fortune to be invited to a workshop on ‘Driving improvements in business performance’ for Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) personnel organised by the Work Foundation ( My challenge was to decide what to say in five minutes on […]

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Business productivity review

As part of their concern with the UK’s productivity performance, the Government has launched a consultation. You can have your say at . We’ve already posted some thoughts under the business support and advice services heading. Do you agree with our points about sole traders and micro businesses?

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Business startup comes to Chesterfield

Here’s a date for your diary: Saturday 24 February. The micro biz champion Tony Robinson OBE will be in Chesterfield to tell us what it’s really like to work for yourself. Marketers, bookkeepers, social media experts and lost of others will be on hand (along with folks who’ve recently started their own business) to offer […]

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Archive for April, 2011

Derbyshire Children’s Holiday Centre – Thanks

Wednesday, April 20th, 2011

A big thank you to everyone who sponsored our efforts in the Dronfield 10k and fun run. We’d raised £521 by the end of March, or over £650 if you include Gift Aid. Our Just Giving page is still open at

Smaller businesses and Investors in People

Thursday, April 14th, 2011

UKCES have commissioned SFEDI to develop a revised Investors in People (IIP) offer for small and medium-sized enterprises. This will form part of a re-launch of IIP in Autumn 2011. We have already developed a mini website for the project which you can find at This will be updated to provide the latest information about the project and host consultative questionnaires. The project will include a review of existing evidence on business improvement and people development and management in SMEs, consultation with stakeholders and IIP Centres during April and then consultation with businesses and business organisations through to July.

Spring / Summer programme of workshops

Wednesday, April 13th, 2011

Help with unit and qualifications development

Following the success of workshops recently delivered by Stratagia, we have arranged a spring / summer programme covering a wide range of aspects of unit and qualifications development. Each workshop has a different focus, so you can select one or more to suit your needs.

There is a workshop to help those who:

  • are new to QCF development and want to get started
  • have experience but want to improve your practice in unit writing or qualifications development
  • ensure that your units and qualifications are compliant with the Regulators
  • want to compare your efforts with peers from other organisations involved in unit and qualifications development
  • would like to know how to design and tailor Rules of Combination (RoC) to suit your situation
  • are interested in understanding how grading may be applied to qualifications within the QCF
  • want to understand how different forms of assessment may be applied within the QCF to suit different learners

We recently ran a series of workshops and these are just some of the comments of people who took part:

“… very clear, concise and delivered at an appropriate pace.

“(I got) a much better understanding of unit writing issues and what areas to concentrate on when writing units. Also reconfirmation of where to find guidance/regs and how to interpret them.”

“A better detailed understanding of unit writing and interpretation.”

“Thanks to both facilitators for a very informative day.”

“I thought it was excellent and covered areas that were applicable to all.”

“Very good trainers, both were helpful and informative.”

The programme will begin in May 2011 and continues until June 2011. After the workshop, we will provide you with free consultancy so that you get feedback on any aspect of QCF development, for example, we will review draft unit or Rules of Combination. The numbers for each workshop are limited so please book now to to avoid any disappointment. Click here for further details and how to book places on the Spring / Summer programme of workshops.