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– Trade Skills Academy Group Helps Minister

Trade Skills Academy Group helps Minister buck the unemployment trend

Minister for Employment, Chris Grayling MP, visited the Training Skills Academy Group to find out more about how they are helping unemployed people back into work and to stay on in work to realise their full potential.  Minister Chris Grayling was accompanied by local MP, Angela Watkinson, on his fact-finding mission to the Training Skills Academy offices in Romford.

With youth unemployment remaining a challenge for the UK, the Training Skills Academy Group has hit on a winning solution for getting people back into work and then stay on in work to complete Apprenticeships and perhaps higher level qualifications, including degrees.

Since it started up in 2009 as the Trade Skills Academy, the Training Skills Academy Group has helped nearly 1300 people get off Jobseekers Allowance and back into the world of work.  It has achieved this through offering two weeks’ fully-funded intensive training in either construction or sales-related trades as well as teaching learners key employability skills such as CV writing and interview techniques.  This training, combined with one-to-one mentoring support, motivates and inspires people to find and stay in work.  In achieving this, the Training Skills Academy Group has developed a number of close links with local, regional and national employers who are more than willing to offer its ‘Academy Graduates’ full and part time positions.  Once in work, the Training Skills Academy Group offers further training to its ‘Graduates’ thus increasing the likelihood of remaining in employment.

In 2010, the Trade Skills Academy joined forces with Exemplas to form the Training Skills Academy Group.  Exemplas, part of the University of Hertfordshire Group of Companies, is expert in helping individuals, businesses and communities realise their potential.  Director, Chris Robb says, “Our partnership with Exemplas has opened up a world of opportunity for us.  Exemplas has given us organisational infrastructure, quality systems, back office and financial support to enable us to grow.  But more than that, for our Academy ‘Graduates’, it means that we can now offer them a seamless route from unemployment all the way through to Apprenticeships and even the possibility of higher level qualifications such as degrees.”

During his visit, the Minister for Employment spoke to leading employers and their employees about the service they received from the Training Skills Academy Group.

Minister for Employment Chris Grayling said: “Projects like the Trade Skills Academy are a great example of providing young people with both the skills and the push to get into work.”

“Meeting the team and local employers was a great opportunity to see how the Government and business can work together to help young people develop practical skills and find sustainable long-term jobs.”

Employers present on the day included Breyer Group and Pioneer Windows from the world of construction alongside Marshall Group and Big Cars, both leading lights in the retail motor trade.  He also had a chance to sample a telesales training session supported by Calder Training and see the latest groups of trainees on their plastering and plumbing trades courses.

Academy ‘Graduate’, Catherine Parr, waxed lyrical about her experience with the Training Skills Academy Group, “The training was completely different from the lessons at school; where the teachers didn’t push me and I became bored.  Our trainer was excellent.  Being taught by an industry expert, who could answer all my questions made all the difference.  As a result I managed to gain the mark of 94 out of 100, which was the highest in the class!”

Director, Chris Robb, concludes, “Being unemployed can really drain your confidence and your motivation to find work.  We not only get people back into work; we help them to stay there through offering Apprenticeships and higher level qualifications.  This also provides businesses with a motivated and cost-effective workforce which is invaluable in these times of economic austerity.  Through 2011 and 2012 we hope to further support the Government in driving economic growth through increasing the range of courses we deliver, moving into the recruitment, financial services and care sectors and getting more people back into work.”

If you are unemployed and looking to find work or work for a business that is wanting to take on new staff, please call us on 0845 641 9881.


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Notes for Editors:

  1. The Training Skills Academy Group (TSAG) is an exciting new venture; bringing together the knowledge and proven track record of the Trade Skills Academy with the expertise, resources and experience of Exemplas (which is part of the University of Hertfordshire Group of Companies – one of the most progressive education, learning and development groups in the UK).

The aim of the Training Skills Academy Group is to unlock potential in people and enterprises through the provision of inspirational pre-employment and vocational training.   Through this, we achieve sustainable job outcomes with the option of ongoing skills development.  In addition, the Training Skills Academy Group provides access to academic qualifications across a wide spectrum of industry sectors – a unique proposition which escalates skills from basic literacy and numeracy through to degree level and higher.

The Training Skills Academy Group also offers recruitment and one-to-one consultancy services to ensure that the specific needs of business are met through in-house programmes or attendance on our range of sector-specific open training courses.

2.    Exemplas helps organisations to change, grow and prosper by delivering advice, support, information and training solutions to employers and individuals. Exemplas offers advice and support in Enterprise and Innovation; Leadership and Management; Diversity and Social Responsibility and Skills.

The Exemplas Group also has an extensive record of successful public sector contract management.  We work in partnership with our public sector clients to maximise the impact of funding and deliver robust accountable value for money at strategic and tactical levels.

Exemplas is part of the £250M University of Hertfordshire Group of Companies – one of the most progressive education, learning and development groups in the UK.


For general media enquiries, please contact:

Ruth Oakey – Tactical Marketing Executive, Training Skills Academy Group

Tel: 07825 189261, Email:, Web:

1 Comment

  1. hi ruth i am currently unemployed and have been since may,and was seeing if i could get on to a short intensive plastering course.the only concern is that i am 45 yrs of age and would i still qualify. could you please tell me if this is possible for me to attend,
    kind regards karel

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