Benefits of Oracle Qualifications

Benefits of Oracle Qualifications:

Management, Customer Service, Safeguarding & Prevent, Advice & Guidance

At Oracle we can provide flexible courses in multiple sectors, tailored around your job role and commitments to suit you and your organisation. For example, we offer courses in management, customer service, safeguarding and advice and guidance, delivered with a mixture of face to face visits in the workplace and our online platform.

Our Management Courses:

– Level 3 Diploma in Management is for learners who work in, or who want to work in management roles such as Section Manager, First Line Manager, Assistant Manager, Trainee Manager, Senior Supervisor and Junior Non- Commissioned Officer.

– Level 5 NVQ Diploma in Management and Leadership is designed for learners’ to develop core middle management skills and competencies. It also introduces learners to strategic management concepts, preparing those who aspire towards senior management roles.

– BTEC Level 5 Diploma in Management and Leadership extends the work related focus from the BTEC Level 5 Certificate and forms the technical knowledge component for the Level 5 Management and Leadership Higher Apprenticeship.

These courses can benefit the individual and the workplace as you will

  • Improve your communication skills
  • Receive valuable, unbiased feedback on your strengths and weaknesses
  • Develop a deeper understanding of management roles
  • Understand how to adapt to, plan for and implement change in the workplace
  • Improve your decision making skills

Our Customer Service Courses:

– Level 2 Diploma in Customer Service is for learners who work in, or who want to work in customer service in roles such as Customer Service Advisor, Customer Service Operator, Call Centre Advisor, Help Desk Operative and Service Agent.

– Level 3 NVQ Diploma in Customer Service is for learners who work in, or who want to work in customer service roles such as Customer Service Supervisor, Customer Relationship Manager, Customer Service Team Leader, Client Services Officer Events Coordinator.

These courses can benefit the individual and the workplace as you will

  • Improve existing customer service skills and acquire new ones, focussing on communication, listening and problem-solving
  • Increase customer satisfaction and form a strong basis for customer loyalty
  • Achieve higher customer retention, acquire new customers, increase sales and overall see a rise in profit
  • Increase employee motivation and engagement through developing a deeper understanding of their role and the impact it has on the company

Our Safeguarding & Prevent Courses:

– Level 2 Certificate in Understanding Safeguarding and Prevent is to support anyone who is responsible for the safeguarding of people and for helping prevent radicalisation. It gives learners an understanding of recognising the signs of abuse, how to reduce the risk of radicalisation and the potential consequences of illegal online activity.

This course is extremely useful to have in any workplace as you will

  • Learn who could be vulnerable, developing a better understanding of initial signs of abuse and neglect
  • Improve your team’s ability to communicate, both with customers and colleagues
  • Increase trust and pride in a company as staff members can see that safety is taken seriously and practices are in place to maintain this
  • Allows staff to be able to record and report abuse and neglect correctly and whenever necessary

Our Advice & Guidance Courses:

– Level 3 NVQ Certificate in Advice and Guidance is suitable for those working directly with clients in organisations providing advice and guidance services. These services may include careers guidance, government agencies such as Connexions, youth work and youth justice, schools, colleges, training providers, universities, prison services, trade unions, charitable and voluntary services, housing, IAG partnerships and human resource departments as well as health and social care environments.

These courses can benefit the individual and the workplace as you will

  • Improve skills to ensure effective communication and how to minimise difficulties when communicating with clients
  • Be able to understand your clients and their requirements better to assist them and tailor the services provided
  • Be able to provide guidance within organisations and working with other services through negotiation, liaison and referral

Click here for more information on our other courses such as:

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Benefits of Assessor/Verifier qualifications

Benefits of Assessor/Verifier qualifications

You may be wondering, “how could this help my business?”. Well, here’s some ways it can! Having someone with Assessing Occupational Competence Training can assess and improve your workplace environment, and a better environment for your employees, means better quality in their services. Not to mention that how the training is implemented is up to you.

Someone with Internal Quality Assurance training can be the one to verify that the quality of assessment is there, and to improve the quality of assessment if it is needed, but this is more geared towards education. There is also training available for those who would want to lead the teams of Verifiers as well, if that would be more your style. 

Whilst these are just a short rundown of the two courses, why don’t you give it a thought, see how you could implement it in your company, and try the training yourself!


Apprenticeship Myths

Apprenticeship Myths

Here is a list of 5 myths about apprenticeships which you may have thought were true.

  • Apprenticeships are for people that can’t get into university

This myth is not true at all. Some people might just decide that university is not the career path that they want to take and decide that taking an apprenticeship is the way they want to go forward.

  • Apprenticeship qualifications are not highly recognised

There are different level qualifications in the apprenticeship scheme starting from intermediate all the way to degree level. No matter the level of apprenticeship you decide to take, they are all recognised.

Intermediate – Level 2 (GCSE equivalent)

Advanced – Level 3 (A-Level equivalent)

Higher – Level 4, 5, 6 and 7 (Foundation degree)

Degree – Level 6 and 7 (Masters equivalent)

  • I will get better job offers if I go to university

This is not always the case, a lot of employers now look for employees that have had experience, which is what you get when you take an apprenticeship, you get hands-on experience in a working environment, whereas with university you don’t get that experience which employers necessarily look for.

  • The employer will let me go after I finish my apprenticeship

Unfortunately this is the case sometimes but not always. Studies show that over 72% of employers keep their apprentices on as full-time staff after their apprenticeship ends which is a huge amount! This of course won’t happen for everyone but you will gain experience that other employers may look for.

  • Apprenticeships don’t pay enough money

The rate of pay will be different for everyone depending on the level of apprenticeship and your employer. However, the pay for apprentices is still rising! One of the benefits of being an apprentice is that you don’t have to pay for your training whereas if you go to university you will have to pay.

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Twitter Tips & Tricks – Part 2

Twitter Tips & Tricks – Part 2

So last time we talked about a few tricks you could use to improve your standing on twitter. We mentioned some points about staying consistent with posting and using hashtags when posting, but there are other methods that we did not mention as well, and some of them we’re going to cover here.

 First one we’ll mention is interaction, but not just interacting with your own followers with polls, we’re talking about interacting with accounts at any opportunity. Of course this is better and much easier with your own followers and the accounts you follow. What I mean is, when you see an account who you follow saying “Oh we’ve finally achieved X”, congratulate them. Or when an account you follow, or someone you follow follows, does a ‘weekly riddle’ or something similar, this might seem minor, but hop in there and get involved! 

 You may be wondering why now, you see the more you interact, the more friendly and approachable you seem, the more involved you get the more people will see your account, might like what they see and give it a follow, and the more followers you have the better. This is especially good for a company’s account, as the more people who see the account, means the higher chance of people getting interested in your product or service.

 Second point to mention, be casual, now this doesn’t mean be overly casual but avoid being too professional on a site like Twitter. People will enjoy talking to your account if you act casually, and especially if you want to follow the first point. Crack jokes, use GIFs, people enjoy talking and joking with others, rather than the professional talk. From my own experience, our more casual tweets do way better than our tweets leaning more to the professional side. 

 Keep in mind, especially for a company’s account, you don’t want to go overboard with being too casual (unless that’s the aim of the account), if you get too casual it could put people, especially other companies, off, a good balance between professional and casual is the perfect way to act on your twitter account, way more so if it’s a company account.

 And a Third point, we mentioned previously about having the company logo as the account’s profile picture, but also having a twitter banner on your account also helps jazz up how your account looks, and it looks like the effort has been put in as well, making it even more appealing to potential followers. Make sure that this banner is related and in keeping with the overall theme of the account, and most certainly make sure the banner is the correct size – the recommended being 1500×500 pixels. 

 Like the second point, and the previous blog, another thing you could try is hosting one of these “Weekly Questions/Riddles” and creating your own interactions, although to get the ball rolling, you’d need to tag people, so make sure you pick your targets well! This one is kind of risky, tagging the wrong person could result in a lost follower, or the account just doesn’t participate, best accounts to target would be the ones already involved in these things. The timing is also a thing to think about, you don’t want to put it out when all the bigger accounts do, or you’ll just get overshadowed, well tags might still help, but still.  

 And something else you can try is shout outs, getting yourself ‘shouted out’ or ‘shouting out’ others, this will allow more people to see your account. The easiest way to do the first is to make a list of people who follow, like and interact with your account, and at the end of the week compile these account handles (the @name) from the list into a thank you tweet, this will drive up interactions from the accounts mentioned, and the accounts who follow them will also see it, increasing the amount of people who see your account even more.

 As you can see, there are many ways to improve your twitter account’s interaction and popularity. Maybe you have your own ways, but this list of a few things you can do, should hopefully help.

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What Can I Do With My A-Levels

What Can I Do With My A-Levels

You might’ve already decided on the career you intend to pursue when you chose your A-Levels (or even your GCSEs) but have you considered whether you can take that route through apprenticeships? And if you didn’t know precisely what career you wanted to pursue before you took them and you’re nearing the end and you still don’t know exactly what you want to do, consider apprenticeships as well.

It’s commonly misunderstood that apprenticeships are only offered in subjects such as Construction & Engineering, Business, Accounting and such, but in fact there are several different options of careers within each sector.

Here are some of the A-Level subjects required for a variety of apprenticeships you might never have thought of:

Geography

Science

English

ICT

History

Art / Media Studies

While many universities require a facilitating subject at A-Level such as a science, a foreign language or Maths, alongside multiple extracurricular activities, a flawless personal statement and sometimes more, a large amount of apprenticeships require English and Maths GCSEs at grades 9-4 and an interest in the subject you’re applying for. Doesn’t sound unreasonable, does it? Not only this, but that apprenticeship course could secure you a career you didn’t even realise you wanted (whilst getting paid) or guide you towards the various options available to you at the end of your course.

Check out the Apprenticeship Guide website for more information or in case your A-Level subject wasn’t listed above.

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Apprenticeships Vs Traineeships

Apprenticeships Vs Traineeships

Many people still do not know the difference between apprenticeships and traineeships so this blog will hopefully help with that.

Apprenticeships

Apprenticeships give people of any age the chance to learn new skills, earn an income and gain experience in a work environment. Furthermore, Apprenticeships are available in a wide range of industries and 3 different levels; intermediate, advanced and higher. During your apprenticeship you can go on to do a higher apprenticeship in your chosen area of work. Apprenticeships are a great way for young people that have just left school to experience what it is like to work in a work environment.

Traineeships

Traineeships are a training, education and work experience programme specifically designed for 16-24 years old. Traineeships can last from six weeks to six months, which is a lot less than an apprenticeship. On average they typically include 100 – 240 hours of work. At the end of the programme the trainee may receive a real interview where  a job or apprenticeship opportunity is available. They may also get an interview to get feedback so the trainee knows what they need to work on and how they can improve their interview skills.

One of the biggest differences between an apprenticeship and a traineeship is the length of each one, apprenticeships can typically last from a year to four years, depending on which level you are at whereas traineeships only last from six weeks to six months, could be more depending on your contract. Also traineeships are unpaid with no guarantee of a job at the end, whereas apprentices are paid and could be given the opportunity to stay with the employer at the end of their apprenticeship. 

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How An Apprenticeship Benefits A Business

How An Apprenticeship Benefits A Business

A lot of people now are finishing school or college and going onto an apprenticeship, there’s a lot more benefit for them than going to uni or college, if they are fresh out of school. But some businesses might be wondering; “what benefit is there for me?” Well, I’m here to tell you about them. 

For one, when your company is training an apprentice, you can adapt their training to suit your business better, making them an ideal workforce for you when they finish their course. In fact, it’s said by the apprenticeships.gov.uk (which is the source for many of these statistics) that 74% of employers said that the quality of their business’ product and services increased, which is a great benefit to a business, one would think.

Apprentices tend to be very motivated to learn new skills during their courses as well, so training an apprentice is a lot easier than you would think, people who chose to do an apprenticeship tend to have chosen it as it’s what they wanted to do. As well as this, 86% of employers said apprenticeships helped the apprentices develop skills relevant to the business, which reinforces that apprentices make an ideal work force and benefitting the business even more

And not forgetting that apprentices don’t have to be out of house, you can train existing employees as apprentices, to improve their skills and their effect on the company. 78% of employers said that apprenticeships improved the productivity of the business, another great benefit to a business.

Not forgetting as well the apprenticeship levy scheme, this is where you, the employer, would contribute a 5% investment on each apprentice, whilst the remaining 95% would be covered by the government. You would also be eligible for a £1000 incentive payment for  taking on apprentices aged 16 – 18 and if your business has less than 50 employees and an apprentice aged 16 – 18 will receive 100% of the apprenticeship funding from the government as well as the £1000 incentive.

As you can see, there are many benefits to the employer as well as the employee for taking on an apprentice. If you are interested, you should get in contact with us at Oracle, and if you would like to learn more about the apprenticeship levy scheme, there’s more info on the Gov.uk website: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/pay-apprenticeship-levy 

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Apps For Students and Apprentices

Apps For Students and Apprentices

Whether you’re studying for your GCSEs, your A-Levels or your apprenticeship, there are a few apps you need to help you with your workload, managing your schedule and revising for your exams.

1. Calendar – essential. It’s up to you whether you download a calendar app or use the general calendar on your phone, but you definitely need one in some form. This will allow you to schedule all your classes, tests and deadlines – and some relaxation time too, of course – to help you prioritise your workload and ensure you never miss anything (notifications enabled usually helps with that).

2. Mathway – this may not apply to everyone, but for those studying any subject at GCSE or A-Level with a Maths element, or are enrolled in an apprenticeship such as Engineering or Accountancy, this will make your life MUCH easier. You can input your problems for the app to solve either by typing them in, speaking them or taking a picture.   

3. Any.Do – an addition to calendar or an alternative. The Any.Do app can sync your calendar to input any tasks or deadlines you’ve already added to it or you can add your own for a range of activities such as call / meeting someone, clean, pay, study and many more. Another feature is Any.Do will sort the shopping lists you input by aisle which could be useful for any student or apprentice with their own home.

4. Quizlet – perfect for pretty much all subjects. This can be used for any GCSE / A-Level subject or for the theory element and modules of apprenticeships – either way the flashcards will come in handy for learning anything.

5. HabitNow – a similar app to calendar and Any.Do but as the name suggests it organises your habits as well as tasks. This can be supportive in quitting bad habits or adopting new habits such as daily exercise, allotting study time each day or any other habit you promised yourself you’d take on this year. Overall creating a better routine for you to benefit your studies, mental health and physical health, alongside any tasks you add which you can categorise, add due dates and add priority levels.

Now you’ve finished reading this blog, you can go straight to the app store and download one or two (or all) of these apps and hopefully they’ll be helpful to you in your studies.

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Apprenticeship Progression Options

Apprenticeship Progression Options

There are many options available once you have completed an apprenticeship. Whether you choose to stay on in employment, take your studies further, or seek different employment.

1. Your Apprenticeship Could Become A Permanent Position

Many apprentices are taken on as full-time employees after completing the apprenticeship within the organisation that they worked for. This is because the employer will know what skills and qualities the apprentice brings to the table and also the apprentice will have all the training that is required for the specific job role. 

Of course this isn’t the case for everyone but over 84% of employers take apprentices onto full time employment after completing their apprenticeship which is a massive amount. Many apprentices that are kept on progress to higher positions within the company.

2. Progress Onto A Higher Apprenticeship

Once the apprentice has completed their apprenticeship, they may have the opportunity to progress onto a higher apprenticeship. This will give the apprentice a chance to widen their skills and gain more qualifications in their chosen area of study. Higher apprenticeships make the apprentice more valuable to their employer as they will be learning more and expanding their knowledge on their chosen area of study which they can then apply to their work.

To progress onto a higher level apprenticeship is completely the apprentices decision if they want to do that, so if the apprentice decides that their chosen area of study is a topic they don’t want to do anymore, they can decide to not do it at a higher level.

3. Branch out to further employment

Some apprentices may decide that they don’t want to stay on with the company they completed their apprenticeship with and decide to branch out to further employment. Apprenticeships give valuable experience of a working environment and give apprentices skills that employers look for.

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Getting Back Into Work

Getting Back Into Work

Some people may find it difficult getting concentrated when first starting a job, or maybe you’re coming back to work after a holiday, lockdown or working from home, it can be difficult to adjust, however there are ways that can help you concentrate! It can be different for everyone, however here are some ways that could help you, or could help someone you know.  

For some people, listening to music can help with concentration. Music can improve your mood and can help with motivation, a good mood can reduce stress and generally can help you work more efficiently, just like how a good level of motivation can keep you going in whatever task you’re currently taking on. Music has also studies stating that it can help with focus, whilst this was more in line with classical music, I don’t see why this wouldn’t work with the songs you love – it works for me!

Scheduling and planning out your day can keep up your motivation and your focus, with an idea of what you want to do for the day, the worry of “when can I do this?” or “will there be time for this” would be gone when you have some good time management and a good schedule. Having a plan set with goals in mind can help people focus and keep up motivation, being able to see progress being made would keep some people working on, while not being able to see having the opposite effect. Having a good plan will also help with time management as well, a very important skill to have. 

Whilst at first, you may think taking a break might have the opposite effect, but taking a break every now and then helps to improve your focus and concentration, it would stop yourself from overloading from a lot of work – a quick walk around outside or however you would take a break would be beneficial, however don’t get to into your break, or you might just mess up and lose all concentration you have left! But regardless, sometimes taking a step back and thinking of different solutions when you’re stuck or just going over what you’ve done, there’s nothing wrong with that – collecting your thoughts is important for concentration.

A more obvious one but a difficult one for many, having a good sleep schedule. Whilst missing a schedule a few nights wouldn’t do too much harm, constantly missing a good night’s sleep can affect your mood and affect your concentration as well. Getting a good night’s sleep can improve your concentration and your overall mood, which will in turn also affect your focus – not even mentioning the other health benefits to having a good sleeping schedule. If you struggle to get some sleep, there are ways to help you get to sleep, which I’m sure you can find anywhere, however I’m just talking about improving concentration here, although my next topic can help. 

Another thing you can do to help improve focus and concentration is to exercise, exercise can lead to having many benefits with better concentration being one of them, and exercising can also improve your mood, and being in a good mood does affect your concentration and focus, so maybe like a 20 minute jog to start the day, or maybe walking to places instead of a car or even bike instead of walking. Just being outside itself can help, just taking a break in your garden or going out for a walk in a park can greatly improve your mood, and like what has been said, better mood means better concentration and focus.

Surprisingly to some, playing video games can help improve your concentration and focus. Some studies have shown that playing games can increase the concentration of the player, which can also last on for a while, although the study did not say how long. Not to mention there’s games specifically for ‘brain training’ that aim to improve your ‘brain skills’ like memory, focus and concentration, so they will most likely help with improving.

Well after reading this, hopefully you’ve thought of a way to improve your own concentration and focus. Maybe you used one of these methods, or found your own way, but either way I hope this helped you out in any way!

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