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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 December, 2012

New Stratagia calendar for 2013

Tuesday, December 11th, 2012

Our latest calendar will be in the post before Christmas. The photos used are all our own work and they’re so good the one we’re currently showing on our homepage didn’t make the cut! (Actually, mainly because we needed landscape rather than portrait photos). If you haven’t received your calendar by Christmas and would like one, just e-mail or use the Contact form on the website.

Ofqual General Conditions go green!

Tuesday, December 11th, 2012

That New Year saying of ‘out with the old and in with the new’ is pertinent for Awarding Bodies in 2013. It’s time to ditch that tatty, well-thumbed and much loved purple Conditions book that you’ve spent the last two years avidly fondly annotating – and replace it with the spanking new green book! Yes we’re talking about Ofqual’s newly published General Conditions of Recognition, November 2012 (which replaces the May 2011 publication). You can download it from .

The new conditions come into effect at 12.01am on Monday 18th February 2013, so there’s plenty of time to add this to that New Year “to do” list. And at first sight, the task won’t be too onerous, as there are only a few updates and additions. Most significantly there are three new conditions specified (A1.3, G4.2 and G.4.3). However, we also notice that G9 Delivering the Assessment has been added to the November 2012 version (and was not included in the May 2011 version)

What do new requirements cover?

In summary A1.3 requires AOs to ensure it either submits or awards a qualification at least every two years, to avoid becoming “inactive”. G4.2 requires AOs to ensure confidentiality in qualification training or training materials and G4.3 requires AOs to ensure that there is no disclosure of confidential information about assessment or content of assessments. G.9 states that AOs must ensure that the delivery and content of every assessment is effective and efficient (e.g. is fit for purpose, permits Reasonable Adjustments, generates authenticated evidence, is attainable at the level, allows assessors to differentiate attainment, is appropriate to the assessment method and is consistent with the qualification specification).

And there’s more!

Ofqual have also published a 35 page document with the snappy title:

Guidance to the General Conditions of Recognition: Referring to General Conditions of Recognition November 2012 For Awarding Organisations

So it’s also time to spring clean that folder containing the old FAQs on General Conditions and mull over the implications of this new Guidance document. This new Guidance document clarifies what compliance looks like, and includes examples of ‘positive and negative indicators’. These should help AO’s to quality review their current levels of compliance, evaluate their strengths and weaknesses, identify risks and strengthen their Contingency Plans.

If you need help with any of this you know where we are!