Sandy Miller (Development)

Management & Competence Development Specialist

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Staff competence is key to the modern workplace.  More and more companies are seeing education and training for their workforce as an investment, not as a luxury — and more and more companies are seeing SVQs as an integral part of their business development strategy. SVQs (Scottish Vocational Qualifications) give you a focused, on-the-job context for training and developing your staff. They are an excellent way of making sure that your staff development programmes and your business strategy go hand-in-hand.


Across several industries, Accredited Staff Competences are now a mandatory component of compliance, e.g. Residential Care and Oil & Gas sectors.


SVQs are based on national standards of performance, developed by representatives from industry, commerce and education. Matching the skills and knowledge of your potential candidates against these nationally agreed industry standards gives you a good idea of where there might be room for improvement.



One extensive study of SVQs in the food and drink manufacturing sector reported the following improvements:

  • Productivity up 20%
  • Quality up 12%
  • Wastage down 6%
  • Complaints down 12%
  • Accidents down 56%
  • Absenteeism down 20%
  • Staff retention up 27%


As these figures show, working to national standards of competence through an effective SVQ programme is the way forward for progressive companies.