Ashcroft International Business School (AIBS) at Anglia Ruskin University is working with Volvo Construction Equipment Division, Volvo Group UK Ltd, which is centred in Duxford, Cambridgeshire, to launch a work-based learning degree in line with a growing number of top named businesses in the UK.
The highly-acclaimed business school has been working with the company since the summer to develop this initiative and this has culminated in a scheme that will offer managers the opportunity to enrol on a BA (Hons) Management and Leadership. A group of 10 managers will be among the first group to embark on the course.
Maxine Knowles HR Manager at Volvo CE is already looking forward to the direct benefits the course will offer the managers and the business. Speaking about the set up and running of the programme, she said, ‘Anglia Ruskin University had a flexible approach whereby they worked closely with us to map the Degree Programme content with the competencies that we wished to develop in our business.’
‘We chose a work based degree programme specifically as it is perfect for experienced managers who can draw on real situations and can very quickly apply what they have learned. A big positive of choosing a work based programme is that the work carried out by participants can link back to ‘real’ business issues and therefore add value back into the business. With our first workshops complete, I have heard nothing but praise about the quality and relevance of the tuition!’
The programme’s potential to demonstrate added value to both the individual and the business was important to Volvo CE. Delegates experience a blended approach to learning which combines a mix of face to face contact, access to online learning materials and personal support provided by the tutors.
Delegates on the programme undertake a series of work-based projects which form the assessment strategy for the degree Programme Leader for Ashcroft International Business School, Rachael Hall commented: ‘It has been so rewarding to work with Volvo CE in developing this programme. This new partnership is an indication of the innovation that has gone into the design of the work based pathways. The corporate programmes team look forward to working with the Volvo CE managers and helping them to further develop and refine their business knowledge and skills so that both the employees and the business will realise tangible benefits. I am sure this programme will be successful for both the individuals and Volvo CE as an organisation.’
Speaking about the launch of the degree, Val Ledden, Managing Director of Volvo Construction Equipment Division said: ‘We are passionate about developing the talent working within the team here at Volvo CE. For many years we have searched for a degree programme that meets our needs and I am delighted we have found a solution. The benefits to both the individual and the business are significant and we look forward to working in partnership with the team at Anglia Ruskin University.’
Vice Chancellor Professor Michael Thorne, Anglia Ruskin University, said in response: ‘This is another superb example of businesses doing what they do best, leading by example. This degree programme will bring benefits to both the employees and the employers which is why this will be the natural choice for work-based learning for the future. Volvo CE has joined Harrods, Barclays and UPS in teaming up with Anglia Ruskin University to increase efficiencies and staff motivation through higher education.’
Paul Kersley Service & Engineering Director and course delegate said: ‘We had been searching for a degree programme that suited our specific needs in terms of content, time required and learning style. For me, the degree offered an ideal blend of workshop activity, theory and work based learning that will provide both experienced and developing managers with the leadership skills that are vital to the future success of our business.’
‘The individuals in the group have different skills and experiences and already the group has started to gel where delegates are helping and learning from each other, which can only be of benefit to the individuals and to the company.’