Introduction

We offer our Information, Advice and Guidance (IAG) services on an impartial and free basis to support and help everyone develop as lifelong learners and achieve their potential in their career of choice.

When approached for IAG on other areas including, for example: finance, health and relationships we may to choose to signpost learners to other local or national organisations who provide specialist services on those issues.

To implement the policy we will:

  • Provide accurate and impartial information, advice and guidance to existing and potential learners, employers and stakeholders about the courses, qualifications and support services we offer.
  • Provide accurate and impartial information, advice and guidance to our own staff about their rights, entitlements and responsibilities as employees, about staff development procedures and opportunities, about performance management and grievance procedures, and about opportunities to contribute to the organisations strategic planning.
  • Provide a service which is free and confidential to the individual, and which meets the highest standards of equality of opportunity.

Information, Advice and Guidance (IAG)

Definitions:

Information – refers to the provision of factual information relating to learning and careers, but without exploring the relative merits of different options. Information can be imparted verbally by an advisor or by printed material and the internet.

Advice – requires more in-depth interaction with the learner. It includes the explanation of information and how to access and use the information.

Guidance – involves an in-depth session or series of sessions between the learner and advisor, in which the advisor helps the learner through the process of making decisions about learning and careers.

We can offer information on potential careers in various occupational sectors as well as signposts to other IAG service providers.

Referrals are made when an advisor recognises that the services of another organisation or agency would more effectively meet the needs of the learner.  A referral can be made either internally within the organisation or externally to outside organisations. These can be within consortia or non-consortia partners. All referrals are in line with the Data Protection Act and other relevant policies.

IAG Service

This statement sets out the details of our IAG service as it applies to learners and employers. The purpose of this statement is to clarify what is on offer, and what someone can expect when using our service.

Who can use our services?  

  • Current learners who are enrolled on a programme at Didac and are interested in doing another programme as a progression.
  • Enquirers and prospective learners who are not yet registered with us but are considering us as an option.
  • Employers who want information about our programmes, courses, or about any bespoke training we may offer.

What can you expect from us?

  • Accurate and impartial information, advice and guidance on the full range of services we offer. We offer information and advice on programmes and qualifications available at Didac. If study elsewhere is more appropriate then we will, where possible, suggest alternatives.
  • A service that conforms to national standards. This means that our service will be:
    • Accessible and Visible
    • Professional and Knowledgeable
    • Impartial
    • Responsive to your needs
    • Friendly and welcoming
  • Equality of treatment. We aim to treat all our learners solely on the basis of their merits, abilities and potential; regardless of gender, colour, ethnicity, age, socio-economic background, disability, religious or political beliefs, family circumstance, sexual orientation or any other irrelevant distinction.

We recognise the rights of all learners to be able to have equal access to learning opportunities.  Learners should discuss any individual issues with their Trainer/Assessor who will know who to contact and how to help them. These individual issues may relate to a disability including Dyslexia.

  • In order to provide the best possible service to you we keep a record of your details, your programme and your contact with us. This record can only be accessed by authorised personnel at Didac that need to see this information as part of their work.

We take all appropriate physical, technical and contractual measures to ensure that your information cannot be used by anyone outside of our organisation.

What do we expect from you?

  • As much relevant information as you can give us so that we can answer your enquiry fully; for example, disclosing a disability or additional requirement to enable us to provide extra support if applicable.
  • If you have any questions or concerns about your application, your enquiry, your course or your progress, we expect you to contact us as soon as possible in order to resolve the issue.
  • We ask you to be open with us – for example, please tell us
    • If you do not want to go to another organisation or provider

Feedback, Comments and Complaints

  • We are committed to developing the quality of our services and we regularly seek the views of our learners to find out how far they are satisfied with the courses and support provided.
  • We welcome any comments you have which may help us to improve our services. If you are a learner with us you can pass your comments directly to your Trainer/Assessor or to the Curriculum and Performance Manager or member of staff.
  • If you are not yet a learner you can contact us via email: [email protected]
  • We hope that you are happy with the service you receive but if you are not then we will investigate and deal with any difficulties you experience. If you have a complaint then we will treat it in confidence and will do our best to resolve it fairly and quickly in accordance with our complaints procedure.

The Services we Offer

Help with choosing the right programme and/or qualification

  • Printed information in our course leaflet and on the web about our programmes and qualifications and the services provided to learners. This information is regularly updated and comprehensive.
  • Access to our specialist team, who can provide you with more information about the programme options available to you.
  • Detailed information and advice about the cost of programme and any financial support that may be available to you.

Help with starting your programme

  • We will provide you with written information about the start process and about any specific workplace information.
  • We will provide you with a comprehensive induction programme. This induction process is carried out by your Trainer/Assessor and is very important because it informs learners about resources, facilities and procedures.

Learning Support

Learners at all levels can be helped in a variety of ways for example: study skills, ICT, assignment or project writing. Whatever the need we can help.

Initial Assessments

All funded learners are offered initial assessment. Learners are assessed in maths and English to identify whether those skills are at the standard required for their chosen course and, where appropriate, are offered additional support.

All learners are assessed to ensure that we are able to respond appropriately to individual needs. Learners who are concerned about their current level of maths or English skills can ask for help including on-line support.

Support during your Programme

We will provide on-going advice and guidance throughout your time with us in order to assist your learning and your personal development. This will include:

  • Course-based support from your assessor/trainer.
  • Guidance on arrangements for assessment.
  • Information, advice, and guidance to enable you to plan your personal, educational and career development.
  • Reasonable adjustment and study support to facilitate your programme if you have a disability or additional requirements.

On broader issues including:

  • Personal relationships, health and drug or alcohol support we will signpost clients to specialist agencies with relevant expertise.

Help with Moving On

We will provide help and support to enable you to choose what you will do next. This may include:

  • Support from staff that can provide you with more information about options beyond your present programme, whether it’s progression to another course, progression to employment or higher education (university).
  • Information, advice and guidance about the job-seeking process including CVs and completing application forms, preparing for interviews, and looking for job vacancies.

Internal IAG Service  

This statement sets out the details of Didac’s IAG service as it applies to both existing and potential employees. The purpose of this statement is to clarify what is on offer, and what the expectations are, both from the staff and Didac’s Support point of view.

What can you expect from us? 

  • Accurate and impartial information, advice and guidance on the full range of internal services we offer. If we are unable to give you the information, advice and guidance you need we will, wherever possible, refer you to an alternative source of information.
  • A service that conforms to national standards. This means that our service will be:
    • Accessible and Visible
    • Professional and Knowledgeable
    • Impartial
    • Responsive to your needs
    • Friendly and welcoming
  • Equality of Treatment. We aim to treat all our employees solely on the basis of their merits, abilities and potential, regardless of gender, colour, ethnicity, age, socio-economic background, disability, religious or political beliefs, family circumstance, sexual orientation or any other irrelevant distinction.
  • As a responsible employer we keep detailed personnel records on our staff. These records can only be accessed by authorised staff that need to see this information as part of their work. We take all appropriate physical, technical and contractual measures to ensure that your information cannot be used by anyone outside the organisation and that we are compliant with the Data Protection act.

What do we expect from you?

  • We expect all our staff to abide by our core values. This means in particular that we expect all our staff:
    • to treat others with respect
    • to behave with honesty and integrity
    • to take responsibility for their own actions and for their personal development
    • to strive for the highest standards of achievement and behaviour by adopting a supportive self-critical approach in our pursuit of excellence

Feedback, Comments and Complaints

We are committed to developing the quality of the services we offer, and we welcome any comments you have which may help us to improve. You may contact Curriculum and Performance Manager with feedback, comments or complaints. Alternatively, if you are an existing member of staff you may wish to go through your line manager.

The Services we Offer

Help with recruitment, selection and induction

  • We will produce clear and accurate job descriptions and person specifications for each job vacancy that clearly spell out the expectations of the job.
  • We will disseminate information about job vacancies, produce application packs and provide advice and guidance to potential applicants in a clear and transparent way.
  • We will provide information about the interview process to applicants.
  • We will provide IAG to new recruits about joining procedures, documents required and the induction programme etc.
  • We will provide IAG to new recruits about terms and conditions of employment.
  • We will provide IAG to line managers about new staff appointments, induction and probationary procedures etc.
  • We will provide information to new recruits about key HR policies and contacts.

Help with on-going support, progress reviews and staff development

  • We will provide on-going IAG to all staff on current HR policies and procedures, including advice and guidance on the implications to them of changes to employment law.
  • We will provide IAG to line managers and staff about the performance management process and their respective roles in that process.
  • We will provide IAG to individual members of staff about their own job performance and related issues.
  • We will provide information about learning and development opportunities both internally and externally, and we will provide information, advice and guidance to line managers and staff about the process for identifying and agreeing staff development needs.
  • We will provide information to staff that they need in order to do their jobs, e.g.performance data, information on quality systems and standards, individual, team or group targets.
  • We will provide information about the strategic planning process and how staff contribute to it, and we will provide information about procedures for consulting and involving staff on operational matters, including participation in section reviews and improvement planning.
  • We will provide IAG to line managers and staff about any of the Human Resources related policies.

Help with Moving on

  • We will provide information, advice and guidance on job and career opportunities within the organisation.
  • We will provide information to staff about any relevant pensions and retirement entitlements.

Didac’s IAG Objectives

  • Establish effective communication with clients.
  • Identify information requested by clients.
  • Supply information materials to clients.
  • Assist clients to clarify their requirements.
  • Provide access to programme specialist information and advice both pre-course, on-course and at exit.
  • Identify a range of options for achieving client requirements.
  • Maintain and improve information materials.
  • Refer clients to other providers if they need IAG that is outside the limitations of the service available from Didac’s programme.