It may be a relatively small trade body, but the Property Care Association (PCA) found the successful outcomes of a pilot course easily outweighed the effort of applying for CITB funding.
The PCA seeks to promote the highest standards of professionalism and expertise for specialists who resolve problems affecting buildings. It does this by listening and reacting quickly to the needs of the industry and providing the training and other support services that practitioners need.
In 2016, the body recognised an urgent need to develop and pilot a course in Property Level Flood Protection for Surveyors to address a skills gap in the sector, and applied for CITB funding.
“With only ten members of staff, we’re small team supporting a big trade association,” explains Lisa Holdich, the PCA’s Apprenticeship Scheme Manager.
“So it was a little daunting to gather all the information to put an application together by myself.”
“And as this is a very reactive and fast-moving industry, we always like to get courses up and running ‘yesterday’ so that people can get the training they need as soon as possible.”
“In an ideal world, the process could have been a little faster – but once the application was submitted and approved, we were delighted to receive funding of almost £2,300.”
The funding helped the PCA develop a two-day pilot course, which was attended by 16 employees from 14 businesses.
The five modules in the course provided them with an in-depth understanding of the key elements that need to be considered to assess the risk of flooding for individual properties. In addition, it demonstrated how to undertake comprehensive surveys to develop strategies to provide flood resistance and resilience in the built environment.
It brought professionals together from connected but distinct areas of flood resilience, so that everyone could broaden their knowledge to make better informed responses to flood issues.
Crucially, it was also an opportunity for the PCA to get feedback on how the pilot course could be improved for the future – making it possible for them to develop a full training programme that was not previously available.
“The course was very successful, so the effort of making the funding application was definitely worthwhile,” Lisa comments.
“Feedback from the attendees helped us shape our future course offer, which is now providing the skills that the industry needs, and is proving to be very popular.”
“We decided to put on a series of courses in 2017 to reach as many flood resilience specialists as possible.”
“Over time we hope to establish a clear career path and a qualification which will address the skills gap and add value to the employer and employee.”
Company: Property Care Association
Sector: Building preservation, maintenance and protection
Challenge: Remedying a skills gap by developing a course on property flood resilience for surveyors
Fund type: CITB’s innovation fund
Amount awarded: £2,296
Impact: The creation of a new, successful and popular training programme for professionals in the sector.
“The course was very successful, so the effort of making the funding application was definitely worthwhile.”
Lisa Holdich, PCA Apprenticeship Scheme Manager