Nic Preston, Qualifications Manager – FireQual, discusses the work of Skills for Security and their new association with FireQual with Managing Director, David Scott.
Nic Preston: Can you describe the work of Skills for Security and how you support the fire safety industry?
David Scott: Skills for Security are the largest fire and security apprenticeship provider in the UK. Well known as a nationwide provider we offer training across the length and breadth of England. With a main base in Warrington, we have satellite centers in Birmingham, Oxford, and Southport with more planned to open in 2021.
We have a passion for high quality learning and teaching, all of Skills for Security’s staff are fully qualified fire and security engineers with 15+ experience each. All our centers include bespoke workshop facilities to allow candidates the opportunity to work in a realistic working environment. We believe in removing barriers to education and are supporting industry with bespoke packages to make training more accessible and flexible.
Skills for Security is a wholly owned subsidiary of the BSIA, the UKs largest trade association aiming to serve the membership with high quality readily available training with both organisations having a passion for raising standards throughout the UK.
Nic: Why did you choose to work with FireQual?
David: We had the choice of a few different Awarding Organisations but for me the link with the originators of FireQual was important. BAFE is the kitemark of excellence and I believe FireQual will have a very positive impact on the type and quality of training in the fire sector.
Nic: What do you feel are the current challenges within the fire safety industry?
David: The two major issues I see is a lack of competency throughout the sector, however with FireQual now taking active involvement in qualification development I believe this will eradicate over time. The second is accessibility to training, which I believe as a sector we have let ourselves down on. However, with the introduction of FireQual we have an opportunity to make qualifications more accessible for training providers and employers to access.
Nic: Why do you feel the development of knowledge and skills is important to the fire safety industry?
David: From a systems perspective, it is absolutely vital that engineers are not only up to date on the latest standards, but also working practices. By raising the standard of training, which in turn develops the skills and knowledge of the engineers you naturally increase the professionalism of the fire safety sector.
Nic: How do you feel regulated qualifications can support the industry?
David: With our national presence, set to grow in the coming year, and our fully qualified fire and security tutors, we are perfectly placed to work with FireQual to provide fire safety training and qualifications supporting the further professionalisation of the industry.
For further details regarding Skills for Security and their work please see their website: https://www.skills4security.com/