The Capita Group Plc, London

 

Summary of grades awarded:

Effectiveness of provision Good: Grade 2

Capacity to improve Good: Grade 2

Achievement and standards Good: Grade 2

Quality of provision Good: Grade 2

Leadership and management Good: Grade 2

Equality of opportunity Contributory grade: Satisfactory: Grade 3

Sector subject area:

Business, administration and law Good: Grade 2

 

The Capita Group Plc (Capita), whose services include business process outsourcing, customer services, administration, ICT and consultancy to public and private sector organisations, employs over 30,000 employees at more than 250 offices across the UK, Channel Islands, Eire and India. In October 2006, they secured a National Employer Service (NES) contract for work-based learning and now have 472 learners, all employees of the company, undertaking apprenticeships, advanced apprenticeships and Train to Gain programmes in areas relating to business, administration and customer services.

The overall effectiveness at Capita was deemed good and Ofsted said the company had a strong commitment to improving provision. Achievement and standards were good overall. High success rates in the current year were seen as a strength. Train to Gain success rates had risen to 91% in 2007/08, significantly exceeding national rates. Learners were found to develop good personal and vocational skills; another key strength. Progression to further training or employment for apprentices was good.

Training, coaching and learning were reported as good. Inspectors only listed one area for improvement. This regarded the planning of individualised learning, which they felt was insufficient and would be better if individual learner needs were taken into account. Otherwise, they said that learners were provided with good ongoing training, had access to a wide range of learning materials, and were given satisfactory support and guidance. Assessment practices were a key strength.

Leadership and management were good with quality improvement arrangements and communications being highlighted as particularly effective. Ofsted said: “Capita responds well to employer and learner needs,” and, “staff are well qualified and experienced to deliver vocational training to learners.” Equality of opportunity and the quality of information, advice and guidance were judged to be satisfactory.

 


Leisure Connection Ltd, Leeds

 

Summary of grades awarded:

Effectiveness of provision Good: Grade 2

Capacity to improve Good: Grade 2

Achievement and standards Good: Grade 2

Quality of provision Good: Grade 2

Leadership and management Good: Grade 2

Equality of opportunity Contributory grade: Satisfactory: Grade 3

Sector subject area:

Sport, leisure & recreation, customer service and marketing & sales Good: Grade 2

 

Leisure Connection Limited (LC) is a company that manages leisure facilities throughout England for local authorities and for corporate bodies including BP, Potton Industries and Sport England. LC use another learning provider, Lifetime Health and Fitness (LHF), who deliver all training and assessment related to the apprenticeship and NVQ programmes. Findings from LHF’s recent inspection were used to describe the quality of provision in this report. At the time of the inspection there were 137 learners in total.

Ofsted felt that both the effectiveness of provision and the quality of subcontracted provision were good. Achievement and standards were good with high and improving success rates on apprenticeships in sport and leisure noted as a key strength. Overall rates on other programmes have also been rising. The development of personal and vocational skills was found to be good and many learners were achieving additional qualifications. Progress on learning programmes was slow for some learners.

The quality of provision was good and inspectors said that: “LC provides good on-the-job training to learners.” The report also stated that the subcontractor also provided, “good off-the-job training to learners through effective individual coaching and mentoring.” This was listed as a key strength along with the company’s wide range of additional training. Assessment was described as thorough and good overall, and information, advice and guidance were said to be generally good.

Ofsted graded leadership and management as good and said that, “LC has carried out good management actions to improve the provision, including the subcontracted training.” Inspectors felt that the service level agreement with the subcontractor was insufficiently thorough and could be improved with more clear and measurable performance targets. The promotion of equality and diversity could also be better. Communication was good, and facilities and equipment were generally good.

 

BEST Training Limited, Poole

 

Summary of grades awarded:

Effectiveness of provision Satisfactory: Grade 3

Capacity to improve Satisfactory: Grade 3

Achievement and standards Satisfactory: Grade 3

Quality of provision Satisfactory: Grade 3

Leadership and management Satisfactory: Grade 3

Equality of opportunity Contributory grade: Satisfactory: Grade 3

Sector subject areas:

ICT for users Satisfactory: Grade 3

Literacy and numeracy Satisfactory: Grade 3

 

Established in 2000, Best Training Limited offers learndirect provision at learning centres in Ashley Cross, near Poole, and in Winton since February 2008. The Ashley Cross centre had an outreach centre at Bournemouth Churches Housing Association (BCHA), though learners there have now been transferred to either the Winton or Ashley Cross learning centres. The company has 376 learndirect learners taking courses including skills for life, ICT and lift truck driving. Although some NVQ training takes place this was not inspected.

Ofsted judged Best Training to be satisfactory in its effectiveness of provision and most other areas. Achievement and standards were satisfactory. The report suggested that many learners were developing good employability skills, increasing their confidence and producing a satisfactory standard of work. Skills for life overall success rates were considered an area for improvement. However, the company had recognised this and the actions implemented to improve success rates were seen as a key strength.

Teaching and learning were satisfactory; good coaching was a strength. Inspectors noted that tutors were responsive to learners’ requests, were knowledgeable and supportive, set relevant tasks and were quick to check progress. The planning of individual learning was an area for improvement with the report stating that, “arrangements for formal, recorded reviews do not always happen on time.”

Leadership and management were satisfactory and Ofsted thought that Best Training had, “an extensive range of very productive partnerships.” They said that managers, “[used] data thoroughly to monitor performance and improvement,” and quality assurance arrangements were generally effective. Yet both the report and the self-assessment suggested that better use could be made of feedback to drive further improvement. Communication was very effective and equality of opportunity was satisfactory.

 


Sysco Business Skills Academy Ltd, Liverpool

 

Summary of grades awarded:

Effectiveness of provision Good: Grade 2

Capacity to improve Good: Grade 2

Achievement and standards Good: Grade 2

Quality of provision Good: Grade 2

Leadership and management Good: Grade 2

Equality of opportunity Contributory grade: Good: Grade 2

Sector subject areas:

Hospitality and catering Good: Grade 2

Employability training Good: Grade 2

Business, administration and law Good: Grade 2

 

Sysco Business Skills Academy Limited (Sysco) was established in 2001 and provides training in business, administration and law, hospitality and catering and employability training. At the time of inspection there were 204 learners following apprenticeships and advanced apprenticeships, and 233 learners on Train to Gain programmes. Some of the company’s provision is subcontracted from other providers, including Entry to Employment (E2E) programmes for 93 learners. Other programmes provided by Sysco were not inspected at this time.

Ofsted graded all areas inspected for Sysco as good including effectiveness of provision, capacity to improve and achievement and standards. The report noted that overall success rates for all apprentices had increased over the last three years to become one of the company’s strengths. Achievement and standards for E2E learners was satisfactory, while Train to Gain learners were found to make very good progress.

The quality of provision was good with teaching and learning on E2E programmes receiving particular mention. The use of initial assessment results in catering and hospitality programmes was flagged up as an area for improvement. Inspectors thought that other assessment was “well planned” and said, “learners have a good awareness of their progress and targets and receive useful feedback from training advisers.” Target-setting was considered, “clear and achievable with realistic timescales.”

Ofsted gave leadership and management a good grade and listed several key strengths for this section. These included good strategic direction, good partnership working and good quality improvement arrangements. Inspectors felt that the self-assessment report would be better if it focused more on the effect new measures had on provision. Communication and equality of opportunity were good and safeguarding procedures met necessary requirements.

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