ICON collaborates with Fusion Lifestyle on new apprenticeship programme
Leading sport and leisure industry training provider ICON has established a partnership with Fusion Lifestyle to bring about a change in the way apprenticeships are structured for the organisation. The new course structure, which will include training for 140 learners in Year 1, offers Level 2 and 3 qualifications and follows the new approach to sector learning that ICON launched earlier this year.
In the two organisations brings together the in-house training offered through the Fusion Academy with ICON’s new programme. Learners have access to higher level qualifications (Level 1 to 7) and a wide range of skill-based courses such as swim teaching and lifeguarding and the programmes include elements such as leadership and management, customer service and teamwork.
Gary Denton, director, ICON explains: “Our contract with Fusion is the first example of our commitment to raising the bar for training and development in our sector. Fusion was already offering great skill and knowledge-based training courses aligned to the National Occupational Framework, via their Academy, for young apprentices. In partnership with Fusion, we’ve amalgamated their Institute of Leadership & Management (ILM) programme modules closely with apprenticeship Level 3 training to ensure a robust offering that will mean learners will be increasingly multi-skilled and able to contribute across a number of job roles.”
“Most providers in the sport and physical activity sector, offer either purely vocational skills or business, management and leadership development. Our programme with Fusion combines the practical and commercial elements in one course creating a multi-skilled, commercially focused frontline workforce.”
ICON secured a long-term contract with Fusion and the two organisations have spent several months developing bespoke pathway opportunities for staff. The training programmes offer a range of learning outcomes aimed at ultimately benefitting the customer, in addition to offering long-term development opportunities for learners that will take Fusion into Apprenticeship Reform and see them utilising their Apprenticeship Levy on the newly developed Trailblazer Standards.
James Duncan, qualifications and training manager, Fusion Lifestyle adds: “As an organisation, we have recently been awarded the ‘Large Employer of the Year Award’ at the 2015 UK Active Training Awards, for our commitment to the ongoing development of our 3500-strong workforce. Our achievement reflects the continual investment and considerable resource in our learning and development programme over a number of years, always ensuring an engaging programme through considered delivery methods.
“Our staff members are upskilled through a number of different courses via the Fusion Academy; this approach connects our Academy and the apprenticeship programme providing a learner journey that is engaging, efficient and effective.
“ICON’s approach and the new programme brings together the expertise and experience of both parties, for the benefit of the learner. The new programme gives employees a broader experience across functions. Staff members specifically trained in one area will be able to cover other functions such as fitness, poolside and front of house duties”
Gary Denton adds: “We are delighted to be supporting an employer committed to developing opportunities that engage employees in long-term career pathways.”