The global Covid-19 pandemic has changed the training and development landscape forever, and CITB NI’s support for training will continue to remain paramount over the upcoming years in order to serve our industry while it recovers and grows again.
Even a year ago we never envisioned that most meetings, conferences and training would be completed via the World Wide Web. This forced change has made the Northern Ireland construction Industry realise that training and development does not always have to be constricted by the ‘business hours’ of the training provider or that their workforce have to travel to attend a seminar or conference.
Throughout the pandemic crisis, CITB NI committed to continuing to provide additional support, advice and guidance to local construction employers in relation to levy and grant as well as ensure training initiatives were accessible by moving them online.
CITB NI has been quick to react to the situation having had experience of providing online mental health training both live and using pre-recorded presentations. The success and feedback from the industry encouraged it to seek the delivery of a wider range of training and awareness courses, which ranged from dealing with anxiety and stress through to advice and guidance on Reverse Charge VAT – both of which were well received and oversubscribed.
CITB NI’s Mobile Training Unit was not operational onsite due to restrictions and the team provided web based taster sessions on a wide range of health and safety topics including Asbestos Awareness and Fire Prevention and Control. All of the videos can be found at https://www.citbni.org.uk/Training/Online-Training.aspx
CITB NI constantly encourage the construction industry to continue to train and develop the skills of their workforce to help overcome challenges, learn more and become stronger. Through consultation and industry workshops the Board of CITB NI have endorsed their commitment to providing more flexibility and access to training and development via the Internet and immersive technologies.
The use of virtual reality to enhance and improve the learning experience is not something new to CITB NI as it has had the capability to display 360° video footage in the virtual immersive training (VET 360) facility, located at our Nutts Corner base.
Looking to the future CITB NI is in the process of researching a cloud based ‘Training Room’ which may enable those with the appropriate equipment and approval to access virtual training on key subjects relevant to industry needs.
Moving forward, CITB NI will continue to focus on providing the support and services needed to ensure local businesses have the right skills.
CITB NI will also continue to follow the strategic road map developed in recent years, under its themes to benefit the Industry – Training Hub, Quality Standards, Partnership Work, Commercial Opportunities and Embracing Innovation. Through a mix of grant funding and direct training interventions CITB NI will help develop the workforce to meet client needs and grow their business.
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