Government targets Summary

There is also issues related to the impact of IiP on training activity, in assessing the contribution of IiP to the development of a high skills image, Down and Smith, (1998) mentioned that, it is important to acknowledge that some firms have sought accreditation as a positive endorsement of existing training activity, rather than as a means of actually increasing the amount of training provided or improving their training procedures.

In addition, there is evidence to suggest that training activity in some accredited workplaces falls below the ideal. Hoque, (2003) stated that analysis of the 1998 Workplace Employee Relations Survey indicates that 16 per cent of workplaces with IiP accreditation did not give any formal off-the-job training to experienced employees in the largest occupational group, and a further 18 per cent provided it to fewer than 20 per cent of such employees in the preceding 12 months.

22 per cent of IiP-accredited workplaces had no multi-skilled employees within the largest occupational group, and 8 per cent did not have a standard induction programme, despite the fact that this was a formal requirement of the Standard at the time the survey was undertaken. In the small business sector, Ram, (2000) mentioned that an event have been found in which the importance of the IiP logo as a PR device for marketing purposes is recognized by both employers and employees. In such instances, however, accreditation comes to be viewed as a paper-based exercise with no subsequent impact on training activity.

Hoque's (2003), stated that not only is there evidence that many accredited workplaces are failing to engage in good training practice, but there is also evidence to suggest that managerial and professional employees benefit more from the training that is provided than non-management employees. After carefully reviewing these issues or problems relating to IiP, I have decided on some suggestion which would be made toward the future development of the standard in terms of the take-up of the Standard in both sectors and also in terms of its impact on training activity.

The Standard itself should undergo change, these changes should relate to the nature of the Standard, and the way in which it is managed. My argument is that, as a result of these Changes, the requirements of the Standard should be accessible in all sectors. When it was originally launched in October 1991, according to Taylor, P and Thackwray, B. (1996) IiP was based on four key principles in the notion to lead to good practice in the management of training: commitment, planning, action, and evaluation.

Employers were assessed on whether they: made a public commitment at the highest organisational level to develop all employees to better achieve business objectives; reviewed the training and development needs of all employees regularly; took action to train and develop both recruits and existing employees; and evaluated the effects of their investment in training and development. Organisations seeking IiP recognition were tested against these four principles, which were measured using 23 indicators. The Standard should therefore simplify to a version that has only 12 indicators as opposed to the previous 23.

It should be claimed that the Standard should now be awarded without any paper-based evidence. In addition, Changes should be made in the management of the Standard. There is clearly a particular problem in terms of low rates of accreditation within the small business sector. This in part is driven by the initial approach adopted by the TECs, which promoted IiP to larger companies that already satisfied many of its requirements, in order to enable government targets to be reached and to help raise the profile of the Standard.

However, despite the need for training in small companies, it is important that they are encouraged to seek IiP accreditation for appropriate reasons. Batenburg and de Witte, (2001), view the Dutch government's interest in IiP comes from the desire, compared to the UK which is to raise levels of employer demand for skills. A key difference between IiP in the UK and the Netherlands however, relates to implementation strategy.

Batenburg and de Witte, (2001), also mentioned that the Dutch government started from the same viewpoint as the UK government that says skills development in the workplace results in a stronger economy but their method of encouraging this has been different. In the UK, large and prestigious companies were targeted to give the Standard prestige and credibility in the early stages, in the hope that companies would follow this pattern. In the Netherlands, by contrast, the main aim has been to bring companies that have little or no engagement with training and development activity up to a basic level.