Employers who send staff on the Guernsey College of Further Education’s newly introduced retail skills courses will have financial support from the Commerce and Employment department. The department is offering £500 per company towards the costs, in recognition of both the importance of the sector to the island and of the benefits the course provision will bring.

Minister for C&E Deputy Kevin Stewart said:

‘Retail is a very important economic sector for Guernsey and by subsidising this training, Commerce and Employment demonstrates its support for that part of the economy. Our financial assistance means that training costs to retailers are reduced. It’s great that the Guernsey College of Further Education has introduced these new training programmes for retailers, and with our support it should help to increase the take-up on the courses. Of course that’s good for the individuals undergoing training and good for the shops themselves, but the improvements should be noticed by shoppers in Guernsey as well. We believe it’s a very effective mechanism to ensure a broad range of benefits.’

Jane Le Poidevin, Faculty Director (pictured) said:

‘We have been working very closely with the local retail industry to develop courses appropriate to their needs. We are very grateful for the support that Commerce and Employment is giving the initiative. It will hopefully prove a good incentive for employers to take up the opportunity to develop their staff’s skills.’

The two courses are being run on a ‘roll-on-roll-off’ basis meaning that staff can enrol throughout the year, which offers the highest level of flexibility for both employers and students. Both are part time one-year courses.

The courses are the City & Guilds Diploma (level two) in Retail Skills and the City & Guilds Certificate (level 3) in Retail Skills Management.

Course content covers a range of subjects from dealing with customer complaints to stock control, from design and display to staff management.

The level two course runs from 10.00am to 4.30pm Mondays; level three from 4.30pm to 8.30pm on Tuesdays. Full details are available from course leader Helen Glenn heleng@gcfe.net.