What is accreditation?
Over the years, many of us have seen many changes to the industry, some good and some bad. Has accreditation been at the front of positive changes within our sector? Around 15 years ago, insurance providers were limited, and many started to ask academies to become ‘accredited providers’ with them before going on to insure their students. Before this, accreditation was pretty much unheard of.
Is accreditation really necessary?
Prior to accreditation, many trainers were teaching without adequate teaching qualifications and insurance. However, there were fewer training academies, fewer day courses on offer, and the industry was providing minimally invasive and low-risk procedures. Today our sector has changed forever; with access to courses that use needles, lasers and tattoo inks, to name a few, there is definitely a bigger need for accreditation than ever before.
There is now an increase of bad trainers, inadequate course content and a lack of overall standards. In a time where accreditation has become commonplace, how are many of these academies still operating, and why are standards in the training arena still below par?
As with everything, money is often a driving factor with not only students seeking cheap courses but bad trainers looking to prey on the vulnerable therapist and insurers and accreditation companies popping up that are willing to take every penny, setting aside morals, ethics and basic industry standards.
Accreditation and insurance companies should be working together to increase and improve standards across our community. This, in turn, can help self-regulate an unregulated and in-turmoil industry that has allowed bad practitioners and trainers to operate and turn a blind eye to the complaints forthwith.
Accreditation, therefore, comes under the spotlight time and time again as being an unnecessary expense for academies and a sense of false security for students looking for excellent training providers.
I have to agree that regardless of accreditation, there are excellent trainers without accredited courses, as much as there are bad trainers with accreditation, teaching. However, choosing whether to be accredited or not or which company to choose over another is just as much as a minefield as our students looking for good trainers.
Accreditation is by no means a legal requirement to provide training courses. Some insurers will request that the course you undertake is accredited. With so many accreditation companies, all with various standards, this does not guarantee good training standards are being provided. Albeit some accreditation companies are known for just taking money, without checking the trainer is qualified to teach, is insured, has adequate training material, and they also fail to handle numerous complaints about bad training students receive.
It is our duty as accreditation providers to create a safe platform for students to find excellent training providers and have a way to report bad training where necessary. Of course, no one accreditor in the UK can guarantee every academy and trainer will meet the industry’s minimum requirements. Spot checks and customer feedback is a great way to help eliminate training providers that are not providing appropriate training.
What makes the Centre of CPD Excellence different?
When we established our platform, we wanted to radicalise the way accreditation of academies was undertaken. As industry professionals, we only focus on accrediting courses where our panel members or we are trained. This means we only accredit hair, beauty, aesthetics and holistic educational courses and courses that may be targeted towards these professions such as business or marketing.
We are able to view training material and check it meets the minimum requirements for every course, as well as check the trainers delivering the courses are qualified themselves.
Centre of CPD Excellence is the only accreditation platform that is focused on student feedback. Students can leave good or bad reviews on a company listing. Aware that some reviews may result from sabotage by competitors, we always check for proof of claims before any bad review is approved. Academies start with our Silver logo and can work through to our Gold logo upon receiving a minimum of 20 positive feedback and maintain a 4-star average.
We look to reward our top-rated academies every year, and they will receive the ‘Top Rated’ banner on their listing and receive an award to display in their academy.
It is vital that we improve standards across the board. We allow students to contact us directly and take all complaints about training academies seriously. If we receive more than three reports a year for anyone academy, we will not allow that academy to renew. In difficult situations, we may also cancel accreditation where we believe further accreditation of a course could pose serious health and safety issues to clients.
Our team also provides interim spot checks of academies to ensure all trainers are registered with us, have up-to-date insurance cover, and meet their CPD requirements.
Our platform is more than just accreditation; we want students to see our logo on an academy’s social media, advertising or website and trust that the academy delivers the highest possible standards. Thus, bringing you more work than any other accreditors logo. Students can also see all reviews on your website listing with us to give them an overview of your business’s credibility.
The future of Centre of CPD Excellence
We plan to regularly check and improve our standards for accreditation and bring in as many methods we can to improve training throughout the UK and beyond. We also hope to consult with our academies to implement changes they would like to see in the future.