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RAP Office Contracts Construct a Better Business with Help from Train to Gain

RAP Office Contracts Construct a Better Business with Help from Train to Gain
15/02/2009

RAP Office Contracts is a specialist Construction Company, based in Maidstone, Kent who focus on office interiors and refurbishment. The company was formed 18 years ago by its founder, Richard Anderson and currently employs 11 staff in roles ranging from on-site labour to office support. They also employ a number of building sub-contractors on specific projects. After reading a case study involving one of their customer’s positive experiences of Train to Gain in her local paper, Julie Anderson the company’s business manager, approached Train to Gain to learn more about the offers available to construction based companies.

The Challenge

RAP had identified a need to grow their business to support their new business plans as well as the need to compete with larger construction businesses across the South East. With a team of five employees, it was essential to improve the skills of the existing staff as well as plan for the team they hoped to recruit from the business’s success. Julie recognised that they needed an expert to guide them through the training and development maze as well as support their aspirations to achieve ‘Investors in People’. As a small company, Julie was unsure if RAP would be eligible for Train to Gain but soon learned that the organisation assists a variety of businesses from those employing two or more people, through to large corporates.

As a member of the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB) the team were aware of the building skills needed by the on-site team, but needed clearer identification of skills to improve team working, productivity, computer skills and general office management.

Commenting on the process, Julie said: "We then met our dedicated Skills Broker, Jay Kaliszewski who conducted an Organizational Needs Analysis (ONA) and has managed the whole process through the last 12 months. Jay looked at the needs of both sides of our business to develop a sensible and above all cost effective training plan."

The Solution

The ONA identified the need for courses in Customer Care, Assertiveness, Time Management as well as general IT skills through the ITQ NVQ qualification for the office based staff. From here, three local training providers were tasked with delivering much of the training on-site at RAP’s offices to minimize disruption to the daily business activities. Commenting on the solution provided, Jay Kaliszewski said: "After conducting the analysis I could clearly see where the business needed training support. As well as sourcing the correct delivery partners, I was also able to secure match funding for a variety of courses as well as tapping into financial support from the Business Leaders programme for customer care courses. More recently we have looked at how we can move forward with the process and commit to a long term training strategy."

The Results

The Business has achieved the Investors in People standard and from here the management team have shown further commitment to learning by signing the ‘Skills Pledge’. Their aim is to grow both in number of staff and turnover, gain ISO accreditation and become an employer of choice for local tradesmen. As well as growth in turnover, the business has recruited five full time staff members, taking the number to 11, as well as managing an increased number of sub contractors. "From our perspective we have seen our business grow since we started working with Jay and Train to Gain. Our team is not only skilled, but more confident and we know that they are all working more effectively as a team," said Julie.

"Our team feel more valued because we are now visibly supporting their own aspirations to develop through continuous training programmes. By working with Jay we developed a clear training plan, have the commitment from the management and above all have a document we stick to. It was written with cle

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