Businesses can take advantage of free online training designed to upskill workforces and boost productivity.
Durham County Council is offering continuing professional development (CPD) courses in everything from health and safety, to equality and diversity throughout February and March.
The courses are just some of the programmes being delivered as part of the council’s Durham Learn scheme, an innovative pilot project aimed at breaking down the barriers that prevent adults from improving their employment prospects or growing their businesses.
These short online qualifications are fully accredited and designed to broaden staff horizons and enhance skill levels, which can help to boost business productivity. Available qualifications include:
• Level 1 in health and safety
• Level 1 in healthy living
• Level 2 in healthy living
• Level 1 in mental health and wellbeing
• Level 1 in equality and diversity.
After attending a registration and induction event, learners can complete the whole course online, allowing them to fit study in around work and family commitments.
Registration events will take place at the Sjovoll Centre in Front Street, Pity Me, near Durham, on Thursday, 21 February from 5.30pm to 6.30pm, and Monday, 25 February from 12pm to 1pm. These are no obligation sessions where people can find out more about what is on offer and sign up to courses if interested.
Cllr Olwyn Gunn, Cabinet member for children and young people’s services, which includes adult learning, said: “We are thrilled to offer these flexible CPD courses for free in County Durham.
“By supporting businesses to upskill their staff we can help increase productivity, which has the potential to lead to further expansion and more jobs for local people.
“It also improves the job prospects of employees, empowering them to move up the career ladder and take on new challenges.”
Course provision can be tailored to suit the needs of each business and can be delivered at the company’s headquarters or offices if eight or more staff sign up. A short exam, which must be taken before Sunday, 31 March, can be sat at a Durham Learn test centre or onsite for businesses with eight or more staff enrolled.
Level 1 courses take an estimated ten hours, while Level 2 courses take 20 hours, although this is just a guide and learners may finish their programmes sooner.
For more information about Durham Learn and the courses on offer, visit
To arrange a time to discuss business requirements over the phone contact