101 reasons to celebrate for Manchester Airport’s onsite education Academy

  • The Airport Academy offers training and qualifications for both airport staff and local people seeking work
  • First NVQ programme for existing staff sees 101 earn Level 2 NVQ certificates - 59 in Customer Service and 42 in Team Leadership
  • Graduates came from a range of departments including Landside Operations, Security and Car Parking

Manchester Airport is lauding the success of 101 members of staff who have attained Level 2 NVQ certificates at its Airport Academy, in the first programme of its kind.

A total of 59 Airport colleagues obtained qualifications in Customer Service, whilst 42 completed a course in Team Leadership.

The programme, which began in summer 2018, was organised by Manchester Airports Group (MAG) as part of a training investment worth over £130,000. It accepted applications from staff in a range of departments including Landside Operations, Terminal and Airfield Security, Car Parking, Forecourts and the Emergency Services.

Graduates were presented with their certificates in celebrations that included cutting commemorative cakes and a speech from Manchester Airport’s People Director, Rachael Minnis.

Among the employees to attain a qualification was Vishal Trivedi, a Security Performance Leader at the Airport. He completed his NVQ in Team Leadership over the course of an intensive two-week programme.

Vishal said: “I decided to take the course to challenge myself and improve my own abilities. It is great to be working towards something tangible and the Airport Academy offers that opportunity. The course helps you communicate on all levels and provides you with strong interpersonal skills which can be used anywhere.”

Also celebrating was Security Team Manager, Jackie Woodhouse, who gained her Level 2 NVQ in Customer Service. It was a case of third time lucky for Jackie, who had started the course twice previously with former employers but had been unable to complete it.

Jackie added: “I believe that it is beneficial to gain qualifications relevant to your role and wanted to take up the opportunity being offered to me. The Airport Academy team explained the course in detail to me and advised me of the changes since I had last attempted the course.

“It allowed me to reflect on the customer service aspects of my role and how this relates to employees as much as customers. It also gave me a chance to develop my communication skills.

“All of the trainers I encountered were friendly and enthusiastic. I appreciated the team’s flexible approach to ensure that all employees are given a chance to take part, no matter their working hours or environment.”

Dominic Sagar also achieved an NVQ in Customer Service, whilst in the position of Security Operations Manager. Having encouraged his team to join him in participating, he has since taken what he learned into a new role as Resilience Manager.

Dominic said: “Our terminal teams had already adopted the NVQ programme and I saw a lot of value in it for our airfield security team.

“It offered a good opportunity to further develop skills that we already use day-to-day, gain recognition for them and we now have the chance to work towards the higher Level 3 and Level 4 qualifications.

“The skills learned by the team will hopefully translate into a better experience for our guests overall.”

Ms Minnis added: “The Airport Academy is a real success story and this is the latest example of the difference it makes, both to our own staff and to local people seeking work.

“These employees now have a nationally-recognised, transferrable qualification that will not only enhance their career prospects but has also helped them develop key skills, which colleagues and passengers alike will benefit from.”

Established in 2004, Manchester Airport’s Academy provides training to staff and also offers a route into employment for those from disadvantaged backgrounds across Greater Manchester, including the long-term unemployed and those without formal qualifications.

Courses are delivered by Trafford College Group, equipping these candidates with the skills they need to find work at the UK’s third busiest airport. More than 400 current members of staff working at Manchester Airport, either employed directly or by third parties, secured their roles after gaining a qualification from the Academy.

For more information on the Academy, visit https://www.manchesterairport.co.uk/community/.