Training provider and developers of the UK’s first foundation degree level qualification in Developer Services Management, Learning & Development Associates, have successfully delivered the new qualification to its first learners from UK Power Solutions.
In January 2021, Learning & Development Associates (L&DA) launched the UK’s first higher-level qualification in Developer Services Management, led by the organisation’s technical experts and in conjunction with awarding body ProQual. Now, the new innovative qualification has completed its very first delivery to learners from UK Power Solutions.
The Level 5 qualification was launched by L&DA following sector-wide encouragement to expand services to encompass a multi-utility service provision, with developers now having the right to engage Self Lay Organisations (SLO) to provide water infrastructure in response to the UK Government’s aspiration to see 300,000 new houses built each year.
UK Power Solutions, whose learners were the first to engage in the new Developer Services Management qualification, commissioned the higher education programme to enable a cohort of their team to gain wider knowledge and achieve an accredited competency in the provision of Water infrastructure
To develop the framework for the new Level 5 qualification, a full review was undertaken of UK Power Solutions needs and procedures, which included interviews with key stakeholders in the organisation with reference to the future of the regulatory authorities. Once a thorough understanding of the industry’s challenges was established, a more detailed assessment was made of the regulations and the clients working procedures, allowing L&DA’s technical experts to better understand the current and future skills gaps.
Glenn Jackson, Managing Director at L&DA, commented: “We are delighted to have been commissioned by UK Power Solutions in 2021 to address this important higher education level upskilling need and congratulate the first UK students to qualify in the Level 5 Management of Developer Services Award. Collaborating closely with key technical managers in UK Power Solutions, the L&DA team crafted a set of appropriate learning outcomes that resulted in a first of its kind qualification in Distribution Services Management.
This new Level 5 framework addresses a gap in the competency requirements for learners performing at the higher level in the UK Water and Wastewater design sector, both in Water undertakers and in the wider supply chain. Learners undertake their studies with the support of a Tutor and then progress to assessment through either an Award or a Certificate working with their Assessor. This is a significant achievement as the successful students were effectively path finding the new qualification on behalf of the sector.”
Training provider L&DA believes the roll out of the new qualification will support the technical needs of Managers, Engineers and others working in the Water and Environmental Industries, and will provide learners, such as those from UK Power Solutions, with a thorough understanding of the rationale for Water and Wastewater planning, design, construction, and asset installation.
To be registered as an approved SLO, a contractor needs to be registered under the Water Industry Registration Scheme (WIRS) after undergoing a comprehensive technical assessment by Lloyd’s Register to demonstrate their competency; WIRS for water, GIRS for Gas and NIRS for power. This new qualification addresses the lack of provision of higher education competency frameworks in Developer Services, which previously only existed at levels below Level 3.
Courses within the new Level 5 qualification are typically five or six days in duration, and to give the courses real practical focus a series of operational scenarios were developed during the first delivery to allow learners to explore and further develop their analytical and problem-solving skills.