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Training Manager, Bield Housing Association

Jo has been Training Manager with Bield for the last two and half years. She joined the company after spending several years working in sectors ranging from Social Housing to Financial Services. Jo has always been passionate about training. When she saw the job advertised for Bield, she thought it would give her a really good opportunity to apply all of the skills she had gained throughout her career, particularly her social housing and training management experience. She is now glad to play a key role in an organisation that cares for the needs of older people, allowing them to lead more independent and fulfilling lives through the provision of sheltered housing and support services.
Jo’s role as Bield’s Training Manager is no walk in the park. She has a very small team of in-house trainers and together they look after the training needs of nearly 1200 Bield employees. With 80% of staff needing training for regulatory purposes, especially in Social Care and Health and Safety, Jo will outsource the delivery of core services through a number of key providers, including St Andrew’s. Because training is of such paramount importance at Bield, Jo is extremely passionate about making sure that courses are delivered to meet specific needs, in line with Bield’s person-centric approach to delivering services to users.

When it comes to First Aid, Bield needs to have around 200 people trained or updating their qualification every year. Jo says: “Because of our requirements, we find that the service we receive from St Andrew’s is excellent; very reliable and responsive. They have a big network of trainers, so we almost always get someone at the time and place that we need them. And of course, the main thing is that it gives us peace of mind, knowing that people are trained to a consistently high standard and that they have the skills and the knowledge they need to be able to cope if the need arises.”

There is more to this though, she says: “One of the big things for us is to give people confidence. St Andrew’s has found a way to give people both the skills and the confidence to apply them when it’s necessary. It’s key for us that people are not coming away from training knowing what to do but having no intention of doing it. St Andrew’s really bridges that gap and that’s exactly what we need.”



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