A national apprenticeship and training provider is achieving new levels of quality after participation in a sector leading improvement partner programme.

London-based The JGA Group, which has offices in Uxbridge and Whitechapel, delivers a range of apprenticeship training and skills development in sales, marketing and niche business management sectors, such as policy, fundraiser, and bid and proposal, to approximately 600 hundred people looking to gain industry recognised qualifications to secure work. It also provides adult funded programmes and undertakes end-point assessments.

In 2019 the company adopted Mesma’s software to improve quality across its operations and the management of critical assurance processes. The technology is used by education and employment support providers and regulatory bodies to simplify complex processes, ensuring management information is used to target resources in the areas that have the most impact on the quality of the learner and customer experience and outcomes.

Currently accessed by the 90-strong workforce, Mesma has helped JGA to identify gaps in quality performance, flag possible solutions and centralise the management of important functions alongside more effective monitoring and feedback on progress against improvement plans. 

Director of quality, Lisa MacCormac, says that investment in technology is reaping dividends and, in a move to improve further quality standards company-wide, has engaged JGA as a founding member of Mesma’s improvement partner programme.

The only one of its type in the UK, the programme utilises Mesma software to underpin collaborative action research opportunities for colleges, universities, training and employment support providers to facilitate change and quality improvement. It is designed to encourage open and honest collaboration, removing travel limitations, time constraints and competition among other barriers, while allowing internal quality assurance to be opened-up to external partners for scrutiny and share best practice.

Lisa MacCormac says the programme focuses on common problems and working with other sector colleagues provides alternative insights and nurtures more effective approaches to quality.

“With Mesma, we can manage our processes far better because our self assessment reports and improvement plans are centralised,” she says. “This allows everyone to see at a glance on a single document key tasks and objectives and when they are due. We can then complete deep dives using the Enquire module to check on progress and impact on learners. This all saves time and ensures better use of resources.”

Indeed, identifying collaborative themes and bringing groups together online to share ideas is a key part of the improvement partner programme, said Lisa MacCormac: “The collaborative nature of the programme undoubtedly helps us to raise our game when it comes to achieving consistent quality. Sharing ideas, seeing what works and what doesn’t, definitely works for us - identifying ways to plug quality gaps and tailor our training and learning resources more effectively. 

Peer review has been a big confidence booster for JGA, providing a high degree of reassurance that its self-assessment reports and improvement plans are fit-for-purpose. 

“Becoming an Improvement Partner has been very beneficial,” said Lisa MacCormac, “Identifying best practice and opportunities to improve our processes enhances our training provision, helps us to produce highly skilled learners, who can contribute fully to the workplace.”

Louise Doyle, CEO at Mesma, said:

“Our purpose is to help the people we work with do what matters most, for the people who matter most to them - their learners and customers. Technology is at its best when it brings people together with a shared goal and willingness to learn. We look forward to rolling out waves four and five of the programme in 2021.”

Mesma developed the platform to support clients Implement effective quality assurance and improvement processes, reducing complexity and cost. Their software and consultancy help an increasing number of training providers, colleges, universities, employment support providers and regulatory bodies simplify their approach, analyse data and target resources where most needed to continuously improve.

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