Be different and succeed
I founded Riverside Training some 25 years ago and I remain with the company as its Sales Director. The company really does mean everything to me and I guess I could never completely walk away. I have children and one of the reasons I created the company was because I am passionate about allowing young people to realise their potential. So we set up the company to allow people to develop career options by undertaking Apprenticeship qualifications. And very rapidly we realised that businesses needed help too to manage Apprenticeship schemes within their organisations.
We started with a handful of staff and a single major client and our initial batch of apprentices and learners were exclusively drawn from Hereford and the local area. The company, now led by my colleague Paul Workman, today has more than 40 employees and over the years we have successfully trained well in excess of 5000 learners, in conjunction with almost 500 business clients. The company now has national reach and a client base that covers everything from primary schools through to the NHS and our capability extends across a broad range of training qualifications, including level 7, enabling us now to target any person and every level within an organisation.
You could say I must be rather proud, and you’d be right. But here’s the thing, we are not the only company involved in the Apprenticeship business. There are literally 100’s of businesses on the Government’s list of approved training providers. And I’m not afraid to say we are some way from being the largest too. But in my view no other training provider can match our values and dynamic approach.
So what makes Riverside Training different? Well our company ethos has never changed. I deliberately set Riverside up with a distinctive family feel where everyone has a voice and openness and transparency are encouraged. Many staff have worked with us for 10 years or more and we do lots of things together – event days, a staff netball team. We take our community responsibilities to heart too.
Indeed I am proud of our conscious approach to people and the environment. We feel it is important to be responsive to the needs and feelings of our staff, apprentices and other learners and that includes people’s mental well-being. We have been using the services of a specialist local company, Bee Inspired, to deliver fantastic support and coaching to help any of our learners or staff who may be struggling with issues. Not only does this give us a unique point of difference but we have also received numerous testimonials from people praising the services of Bee Inspired and thanking us for providing such valuable support, and you can imagine how great that makes us feel.
But it’s not just softer values that sets us apart. We are highly respected for our innovative thinking and pioneering approach to training. We were one of the first to offer level 7 qualifications training and led the way on the introduction of interactive online learning via BUD, cognitive domain mapping, fully electronic enrolment and an employer portal to view applicant and learner progress.
Fresh thinking is what keeps us ahead. That and the fact that we just love doing what we do.
With Riverside Training you can reach beyond any limits. Be different and succeed.
by Jane Preston
Founder, Riverside Training