Topic: CPD Sectors>News

Marketing Ideas for your Training/Coaching Business

Posted on January 24, 2022 by - CPD Sectors>News, News

Marketing for your training/coaching business can be tricky if you aren’t sure where to start.

Here are some simple ideas to get your marketing up and running:

Become a Social Networker

Create business accounts and actively participate in all of the big social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+, and Instagram.

Create Video Content

Video content is hugely valuable, and an extremely sharable medium that can reach much wider audiences. Creating a YouTube channel to hold all of your videos in one place can be very beneficial and direct all of your customers to one place.

Get Creative with Infographics

Infographics are insanely powerful marketing tools. They are visual eye candy for the reader and easy to digest the information. People also love to share them, so they are a great way to drive up referral traffic and links.

Give a New Lease of Life to Old Content

If you are in a dry spell or you are short of time, instead of making some content that is totally new, breathe new life into what you have already in your content library. You already have all the content there, so make it into something new and fun!

Utilise LinkedIn

There is a ton happening on LinkedIn, and it can be a great place to promote your content to customers and other businesses. You can also share ideas, join groups, enter into conversations with others, and build your brand out with other like-minded professionals.

Industry Partnerships

Creating partnerships with other businesses means twice as much notice. If you are partnering with a business that is focused solely on a different industry to you, it introduces and opens up opportunities to a whole new audience.

Enter Business Awards

Most industries out there have business awards you can enter and win, providing you with an online badge you can place on your website. Badges like these can boost your credibility and as a result, increase sales. Much like the CPD Standards Office badge which provides a trusted quality mark for your business.

Develop a Customer Referral Programme

Offer your existing customers a free product, a free month of service, or some other reward for referring new customers. Word of mouth is a very powerful way to find new customers.

So what ones are you going to get started with first?

The Golden Rule to Follow when Building Your Company Marketing Plan

Posted on January 14, 2022 by - CPD Sectors>News, News

The golden rule to creating an amazing ‘marketing strategy’ is to know what your short-term goals are, meaning in the next few months. But also, what your long-term goals are: 1 year, 3 years, and 5 years from now. Looking at a strategy in this way will help you to plan, not only for your long-term goals but also your short-term targets too.

Thinking about where you would like to see your business in the future will help you to create the targets that you want to achieve. Creating targets based upon your goals will help you to think about your plans effectively, which can give you ideas of the smaller steps you need to complete in order to achieve the bigger goal.

5 Simple Steps to Creating a 1 Year Plan:

  1. Where do I see my business in 1 years’ time?
  2. What are the activities I need to complete in order to meet the 1-year target?
  3. How can I incorporate these activities into my workload?
  4. Who will need to support these activities to make sure they are achieved?
  5. When does each activity need completing by to keep to the planned schedule?

Remember not everything will go to plan, some things might get pushed back due to more urgent work that needs completing and some tasks might need modifying to suit the business environment at that time. Plans are adaptable and you can change them to suit as time goes on. So, don’t get too hung up on everything running smoothly.

Following these steps will help you to create a simple and effective marketing strategy that will help you to achieve the targets you have set yourself. Thinking in terms of both long-term and short-term goals will help you manage your time, work productively and move your business forward. A plan that works with your business will inevitably aid you to make your vision turn into a reality whether you are a small or large company.

Summary

To summarise, here are 3 things to remember from this blog post:

  • Think about the future of your business!
  • How will you get there? Set 1, 3 and 5-year goals.
  • Don’t let anything stop you – review, adapt, and refine to fit your environment but always keep going!

My Marketing Button is an online platform that empowers you and your team to plan, track and implement a successful marketing strategy.

Sign up for Red Button Marketing’s free 7-day trial today!

A big thank you to our lovely colleagues at Red Button Marketing for this guest post, take a look at their website here – https://www.redbuttonmarketingtraining.co.uk/

Are you looking for CPD Accreditation?

Get in touch with one of our accreditation advisors today to find out how!

Email: info@cpdstandards.com

Tel: 0203 745 6463

Self Care for Trainers, Coaches & Online Educators

Posted on July 30, 2021 by - CPD Sectors>News

Trainers and coaches spend an awful lot of time thinking about others, and sometimes not enough time on themselves. Self-care is important for everyone and should be a priority for all.

With the challenges over the last 18 months, it has highlighted how important self-care actually is. The challenges of COVID19 and adapting businesses to the new way of working have put huge pressure on all business owners, without taking time to look after themselves in the process. Creating this balance can be hard but it’s vital everyone has time out in their diaries to think about themselves for a moment.

Here we have collated our top 5 tips to think about when scheduling some self-care for yourself:

Make Time For Yourself

Make time for yourself every single day. Open your calendar, and schedule some time to fit a bit of self-care into your day. This could be 10 minutes to yourself which can make a HUGE difference.

Get Outside

We are all guilty of spending too much time at the desk and not taking enough breaks to go outside. So on your break, get yourself outside for a walk in the fresh air to clear your mind before getting back to the desk. Another tip is to schedule 15 minutes out of your calendar in the morning and afternoon to give yourself some time to have a cup of coffee outside. (or tea if you prefer!)

Do Something Creative

If you are starting to feel burned out at work, take the time to do something creative. Dig out those art projects you have been putting off doing, or read that book you haven’t got round to starting. Get those creative juices flowing and allow yourself to enjoy some me-time doing something you love. By doing these things, you are boosting your happiness and therefore your serotonin levels which is always a good thing!

Daily Affirmations

Starting the day positively can really boost your mood and make you have a more productive day. Each morning recite your 3 favourite affirmations to yourself with gusto and you will find that you can help break unhealthy thought patterns and create a new positive belief system. You can place them around your home and work area as mini-reminders to motivate, inspire, and centre you throughout the day…

(affirmations are positive statements that affirm how you want to feel or show up in the world.)

Prioritise Your Mental Health

It is the single most important thing you can do for yourself and your health. When your mental health is treated and cared for, you can focus on doing what you love most— delivering training. After a busy day of training, take the time to relax and destress from the day and clear your mind using techniques like meditation, take a bath or simply read a book. 

Last week CPDSO ran a webinar in collaboration with Marion Hewitt, a positive psychology practitioner, and award-winning coach. We discussed prioritising self-care and considered ideas and options to build our personal self-care/wellbeing plan that is realistic, beneficial, and enjoyable. 

Watch the full webinar here – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9-t2r5X6y0w 

Restructure your Online Training to Get More Bookings

Posted on July 15, 2021 by - CPD Sectors>News

It can be easy to get stuck in the same cycle of delivering training online that you have always delivered. So how can you mix it up?

Here we have put together five thinking points to help you make your online training more relevant and attractive to clients surfing the web:

Re-structure Your Courses

Instead of running a 3-day course over consecutive days, allow/encourage delegates to split up the course so that they do 1 day a week, or once a month for example. It provides them with options and can be easier as a trainer to do when delivering online courses as you can make parts of your courses Evergreen. 

Put in place collaborative tools so that delegates can get support from you as the trainer and other delegates between training sessions. Your courses will be far more attractive to those thinking about buying as they can be totally tailored around them.

 

Offer Courses As Different Lengths & Formats

Face-to-face courses are traditionally offered as a one-day course. Mixing up the length of the course by going online gives you many possibilities, it can work well for those delegates who find it hard to get time off work, or are unable to get to the training course location. 

A distanced learning version can replace or go alongside your F2F course for blended delivery. You can also write an eBook, which will be available with the online course as another collaborative tool.

 

Offer Free Taster Webinars in the Evening

Your prospect delegates will always want an insight into your course, so why not offer a one-hour overview of the course that runs in the evening as a webinar. Lots of people do not have the time during the day due to work commitments and their personal lives, so making the short taster session available once they are at home will work for a lot of people. 

ADDITIONAL TIPS: Include email and phone breaks into your training. Build specific breaks into your training to allow delegates to go off-screen and make/take calls and check their email. You’ll get more relaxed delegates, knowing they have dealt with the important stuff at the office.

 

Build In Networking Into Your Training

If one of your delegates comes away from your training with a business opportunity from one of the other delegates, you get the credit. Take time to understand who is attending each training course and who they may find it useful to meet.

Also, use social media to your advantage. Set up a LinkedIn group for delegates attending this course (along with past delegates) where they can learn from each other and network after the training has finished. Connecting past delegates with current delegates is a very powerful way to re-engage previous clients and give new clients great value. You can also encourage your delegates to share what they have learned on their social media accounts and tag you.

Why is CPD Accreditation Important to your Business

Posted on May 17, 2021 by - CPD Sectors>News

CPD Logo 2018 PNG small

Continuing Professional Development (CPD) has a huge variety of benefits to a business or an individual. In today’s working world, there is a lot more competition than there used to be 10 years ago, so if you want to succeed you need to stand out from the crowd.

For businesses operating in highly competitive markets, standing out is the utmost importance to gain market share and be number one against competitors. All businesses compete in different ways, for example one may compete on price or others may compete on unique value propositions.

One way to do this is to take advantage of becoming a CPD Accredited provider. There are over 2000+ professional bodies, institutes and regulators who have individual CPD policies for members to undertake to stay registered and be able to practice, which therefore brings up a need for CPD accredited courses.

There are huge benefits to becoming a CPD accredited organisation, these include:

  • Distinguishes your business from other competitors in the market
  • Ensures standards remain high in the workplace
  • Keeps employees knowledge and skills up to date
  • Helps to achieve business objectives
  • A high level of professionalism 
  • Creates greater work engagement/retention from employees who can see you are investing time in their careers

CPD accreditation can be a major benefit to your business in many ways but it firstly, puts you on top of your competition. Learners looking for CPD accreditation are always going to choose your accredited courses over ones that aren’t. It looks great that you have been independently assessed and undergone a rigorous assessment of your training courses to ensure excellence in the content you are delivering. Many regulated sectors such as finance, law, medicine and construction have mandatory CPD policies so professionals within this sector have CPD requirements to meet, and are always going to choose a course where they can receive CPD points over ones that cannot.

Undergoing CPD accreditation for your business ensures that you are delivering high quality training that meets expectations for all learners. It indicates that you have reached standards and benchmarks to offer your training into mandated CPD sectors that professionals are able to gain CPD points from. Accredited training demonstrates the highest standards of educational quality as well as a commitment to delivering great learning experiences.

A CPD accredited business inspires trust in prospective customers as it displays its commitment to the highest standards of professional development for its employees. The potentially huge, positive impact of this upfront investment on the long term profitability of a business should not be underestimated.

CPD Then and Now: from the Industrial Revolution to the Digital Revolution

Posted on May 15, 2021 by - CPD Sectors>News

grad and cpdso

The Dawn of Continuous Learning

The process of undergoing continuous professional learning is encouraged and attested by professional bodies and associations of which the Royal Medical Colleges (established in the 16th century) were the first.

It was only towards the end of the 18th century, however, that the demand for reskilling within the lifetime of a professional’s career exploded – with many professional bodies being founded during the first industrial revolution. And for good reason: the increasing specialisation of labour, coupled with the manufacturing boom which demanded frequent changes in production processes, meant that factory workers and their superiors needed to learn new skills continuously and in short spaces of time.

The rate of professional growth thus became more dynamic as society transformed, highlighted by the following two Industrial revolutions which spanned the 19th and 20th centuries. 

From that point onwards, the rate of sector growth has sped up across the board (unless the profession became obsolete). The innovation of new sub fields for professionals to explore during their career lifetime has now gone so far as to introduce the possibility of an individual needing to be a part of multiple professional bodies or associations. 

Today, there are currently over 1000 provisional bodies across the UK alone. A number that is expected to increase over the next 4th industrial revolution.

For this reason, professional bodies are now expecting more than ever that their members stay upskilled by ongoing Continued Professional Development (CPD). 

The term CPD was born out of professional bodies who continue to regulate standards of practicing professionals in their fields. This occurred in parallel with many professional bodies moving from a more relaxed reskilling model, in which they allow their members to complete self directed CPD and only put forward a suggested amount of hours for the professional to complete, to a more demanding one where all CPD undertaken must be industry specific and many now have a mandatory minimum amount of hours. 

This trend further reflects the speed at which society and the many professional sectors that make it up are evolving. So fast, in fact, that the lines between academia and professional application are blurring. CPD is the solution that naturally merges these two worlds.

CPD in The Age of The Degree

Let’s consider some of the ways in which CPD facilitates the growing need for efficient reskilling of an expanding workforce:

  • Course length – Courses are short and, more often than not, can be taken alongside work commitments
  • Relevance to current field demands – the training is written and led by practitioners rather than people that only know the theory  
  • Flexibility of course creation – the course can be created and implemented in a streamlined way – with no need for red tape 
  • Accreditation – Training providers can opt to get their training quality checked by a third party accreditation company to assure the delegates of the high standard of training they offer. Find out more
  • Ascribed worth – This is the worth that the delegates place on having completed the training

The last point is perhaps the only one in which a university degree has a clear inferred advantage. As mentioned in the definition this is not necessarily the worth an employer places on it but the worth ascribed by the delegate/professional themselves.

Degrees are converted accolades of life, known and respected ubiquitously for centuries. However, CPD training is much shorter and mainly undergone to gain applicable knowledge rather than a status. For this reason people are more interested in completing CPD training fast to gain the knowledge to apply to their role.

Fair enough, people do not want a stack of certificates in a drawer they rarely open. And the walls of professionals are usually filled with tools that help them outline the future, such as planning charts and visualisation boards. So not much space for the hundreds of CPD certificates one would amass over a lifetime of professional training upgrades. 

Despite this, the relevance of CPD training remains and will continue to grow as a need for employees to perform and subsequently a demand for employers to supply.

Future-Proofing CPD in the Digital Age

Being in the digital age, this is of course a possibility that has been explored, created and one that the CPD Standards Office is supporting to establish as a systematic way to demonstrate skill growth to current and future employees. 

In particular, we are looking to shift from today’s paper-based CPD certification model (which suffers from the problems highlighted above as well as a significant rate of document loss/damage) to a hybrid model, which combines paper certificates with their “digital twins”: secure, tamper-proof and always-available CPD certificates which can be instantly verified on-demand by employers and regulators. In this way, we are able to make the most of the advantages of paper-based certificates (more tangible and robust certifications) whilst also addressing the demands of a digital society which enables and favours greater efficiency.

The digital certificates we are offering all our members can be issued with ease thanks to an easy-to-use web application that accepts Excel spreadsheets. When a CPD provider issues their digital certificates in this way, each learner receives an email containing a QR code. This QR code can be easily shared on CVs, business cards, social media or on any other medium required. A simple scan of a given QR code will reveal the details of the matching certificate in a matter of seconds. No need to scan, hand over or present paper certificates any longer. Moreover:

  • Thanks to our use of Blockchain technology, the data in the certificate cannot be tampered with. Any attempt to alter its details will result in a mismatch with the genuine certificate fingerprint on the Blockchain and therefore a failed verification.
  • CPD verifiers can always be sure that the verification of the certificate is genuine, thanks to our use of public-key cryptographic methods when signing the certificate as well as a clear indication of the patronage of the platform by CPDSO.

In rolling out digital-twin certificates, we have thought carefully about the needs of learners too, especially the fact that CPD certificates are likely to fall in and out of relevance at different stages of their careers. As a result, loss or damage to a paper CPD certificate can result in significant hardship when proving suitability for a given job. Our “Portfolio” feature goes a long way in mitigating this risk: each digitally issued CPD certificate can be added by its recipient to their so-called “digital portfolio” on the platform as it is received. In doing so, the learner can build a digital record of their CPD certificates and points accrued over the course of their career. Each certificate can be downloaded on demand and even an entire CPD portfolio can be shared with just one QR code or link.

As this article has shown, professional attestation has undergone fundamental shifts over the course of the centuries, and this decade is no different. Paper-based certifications possess unique advantages which should not be lost. However, in an ever more decentralised and digital world of work, made even more so by the pandemic, a new, parallel certification paradigm is needed to cater for both the large volumes of highly-valuable CPD qualifications and the renewed needs of employers. The CPD Standards Office, together with its technical partner, Gradbase (https://cpdso.gradba.se) has made a fundamental move in this direction, by deploying a “hybrid” certification model which so far has provided value to many of its members and which we hope will continue to evolve and become the de-facto standard for CPD.

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This article was written by Kirstie Walker of The CPD Standards Office in conjunction with Alberto De Capitani at Gradbase. CPDSO are working with Gradbase, a startup based in London, UK that aims to digitise and tamper-proof all forms of personal certification using Blockchain technology. In so doing, hiring processes are made more efficient and fraud is minimised. If you would like to sign up to use Gradbase for free as part of your CPDSO membership please contact your designated account manager. If you wish to know more about Gradbase and its technology please contact Alberto De Capitani at alberto.de-capitani@gradba.se .

CPD in the Construction Industry

Posted on May 10, 2021 by - CPD Sectors>News

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Continuing Professional Development (CPD) is a mandatory requirement for over half a million individual members of construction professional bodies and member institutions. CPD has been long-established within the construction sector, and many professional bodies have had long standing CPD requirements in place.

The construction industry needs to ensure that the knowledge and skills of construction professionals are maintained to ensure they remain professional individuals and stay up to date. This could mean improving on current skills, developing them to a new level, or it could mean learning new ones that will allow that professional’s job role to expand or prepare them for potential promotion.

For many years, the construction industry has increased its commitment to ongoing development. Many professional bodies and institutions have introduced mandatory CPD requirements and different methodologies for doing CPD. 

For example, the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) requires all chartered members to undertake at least 35 hours of CPD per year. The RIBA regularly audits member records to check compliance.

The CPD undertaken could include:

  • Online and F2F training courses
  • Reading reports, magazine, websites or other publications
  • Attending conferences, seminars or workshops
  • Supervising apprentices/students
  • Training other members of staff

Technology is continuously developing so there are new methods of construction always being introduced and therefore a need for training and development of these skills is necessary. CPD gives professionals the opportunity to increase their understanding of the industry and keep up to date with latest changes and product developments. Lifelong learning is the new normal with so many updates and new developments happening all the time, thus why CPD is so important to a career in the construction industry.

With advances in technology, changes in regulation, and increasing specialisation in various fields, CPD is becoming the normal for many construction professionals looking to get ahead in their careers, and also for many employers who are hoping to meet their business objectives.

Construction being a fast paced industry, it needs to keep the profession up to date on workplace changes and education for all professionals aligned to building and construction. CPD is a widely recognised and successful method of education which highlights the importance of undertaking CPD requirements aligned to each professional body. This requires companies who provide training to be able to issue CPD points so that learners can put this to their CPD record, thus why having your training activities is more important than ever.

Skills Paying Bills in 2021

Posted on March 17, 2021 by - CPD Sectors>News

At the end of December 2020, 1.72 million people were out of work in the UK, an increase of 1.2% compared to September 2019. The job market is now more competitive than ever, with many seeking any type of work they can find to support themselves financially.

Rising numbers of professionals are now looking to up-skill into new industries and get back into work by changing careers. As the demand for upskilling increases, many individuals have now started sourcing training from companies that have a CPD accreditation. One of the benefits of cpd accreditation is that it ensures that CPD points are given to the individual upon completion.

But just what does the job market look like in the UK today? We analysed Glassdoor.co.uk to find out which industries are hiring in the current environment and in which parts of the UK the most available jobs are.

Which Job Positions Are Most Available?

Few will be surprised that medical professionals are most in-demand, with 4.32% of all roles advertised on Glassdoor UK looking for a registered nurse. Pressure on the NHS is nothing new, but the pandemic has led to even more numbers of trained medical staff required to cope with COVID-19.

2.35% of jobs on offer are for janitorial staff. Despite many businesses being closed, those that are able to remain open need to address cleanliness and hygiene as a high priority in order to comply with government guidelines, meaning cleaning staff are in high demand.

Digital marketing representatives make up 1.97% of all open roles and marketing managers come in at 2%. With 85,000 businesses launching online stores since March 2020 and 75% of buyers and sellers preferring online stores, digital marketing appears to be a growth industry despite, or some may argue because of, the challenging economic times.

Schools have been intermittently closed over the last twelve months and this has left many parents with the tough challenge of having to look after their children while also working. A third of local authorities have reduced free childcare placements in the UK, meaning early years are also being denied free child care. Therefore, private childcare providers have had a hiring surge and nanny’s now make up 1.79% of open roles.

Private tutor jobs are also on the rise, with 1.48% of advertised roles on Glassdoor UK. Concerned parents are choosing to use these private educators to accommodate missed lessons from school.

Where Is The Highest Supply of Jobs?

The North / South divide when it comes to economic opportunity has been in the news again recently in the context of varying lockdown restrictions across the country. The data from Glassdoor did show a significant number of adverts were for jobs in London (27.85%), however, Northern cities were also well represented, with Leeds, Manchester and Glasgow, combining to make up 34% of advertised jobs on Glassdoor UK.

Which Companies Have The Highest Percentage of Jobs Available?

When looking at specific companies who are hiring, the leader was a provider of private childcare care, Little Ones UK, at 1.50%, reflecting the need for private childcare during the pandemic and school and nursery closures.

Language Trainers, who provide foreign language lessons, took up 0.46% of adverts. In the first lockdown, 10% of Brits took an opportunity to learn a second language. Duolingo, a language learning app, showed an almost 300% increase in new users in March 2020 alone.

Hobbies that can be enjoyed safely in our own homes have been key keeping many of us occupied during lockdown. Gaming increased by 46% at the start of the pandemic and software developers Jadex are seeking various professionals to meet the demands of users, with 0.46% of advertised jobs.

Get F2F ready Update – 13th August 2020

Posted on August 13, 2020 by - CPD Sectors>News

Responding to the demand to get training events back on track for 2020, we have been working hard over these past weeks at the CPDSO, in partnership with a great CPDSO member Barry Bailey, from Mobile Team Challenge (MTC), to pull together a tool to help get all of our providers back in a F2F environment.

The CPDSO have created a detailed guidance document, in line with the current Government recommendations and utilising the expertise from some of our great CPD colleagues, which we are pleased to announce will be available to our members next week!

Please find more information on what to expect from our guidelines in this summary below:

The CPD Research Project 2020

Posted on August 7, 2020 by - CPD Sectors>News

Our Research Background

The CPD Research Project, established in 2009, is largest university led research project into CPD, adult skill development and lifelong learning.

With over a thousand professionals, 50 professional institutes, and various employers, charities and government, taking part in the research project, the results produced robust data.

The most striking finding was a strong need for stringent, independent accreditation to verify appropriate learning activities.

Whether training courses, conference events, online learning and coaching for formal Continuing Professional Development (CPD) and employment performance management requirements.

From there, the Professional Development Consortium was founded which is home to the CPD Standards Office, and the CPD Research Project – still ongoing to this day.

As the independent CPD accreditation service for PDC, the CPD Standards Office mission has always been to “Campaign for Excellence in Lifelong Learning”.  To continue to achieve this, we need considerable contributions to this survey that will generate robust data and statistics.  These will consequently generate a clearer picture of the evolving landscape of online and CPD training opportunities, as well as its dark underbelly of unscrupulous rogue providers.