Published On: Wed, Sep 19th, 2018

Plastic Surgeon celebrates as first learners attain its innovative NVQ in surface repair

An expert finishing and repair firm is celebrating the first of its employees passing the requirements of its newly introduced NVQ scheme – which sees its repair specialists benefit from a fully accredited qualification, gaining a Level 2 NVQ in surface repair. Plastic Surgeon, the market leader for surface repair, introduced the specially designed course at the end of 2017, making the firm the first in its industry to offer an NVQ specifically in surface repair. The intervening 8 months has seen the first participants undertake the course requirements – with 22 of Plastic Surgeon’s finishers managing to achieve their NVQ qualification in the first round of course inductees.

Those who passed include Claire McMullen, who has worked at Plastic Surgeon for 14 years, operating as a surface repair specialist predominantly in the North West. Claire’s extensive experience meant that the technical requirements of the course were practically second nature, however that didn’t mean it wasn’t without its challenges. Commenting on the demands of the course, Claire said: “While I was confident in my repair capabilities – being observed by course assessors certainly meant the pressure was on! Having done the job for many years, the practicalities of repair come naturally, but it was certainly good to brush up on my skills, while having the relevant NVQ qualification for my trade will prove invaluable when it comes to demonstrating our capabilities on site.”

Having achieved the requirements of the specially developed course with flying colours, Claire is shortly due to be approved as a course assessor, helping her colleagues to progress through the NVQ. The assessor standard requires some additional work on top of the NVQ, Claire has had to provide a more extensive portfolio and learn about the assessment process. With qualified internal assessors it will mean the company can complete the course entirely in-house – another first for the industry.

The specially tailored NVQ helps Plastic Surgeon to develop and promote the skills of its staff, while also ensuring strict compliance with the latest requirement for securing a CSCS card.

Plastic Surgeon, which operates throughout the UK & Northern Ireland, is the first in the industry to offer an NVQ in surface repair and spent 6 months developing the course to fit the industry requirements. Employees who complete the qualification will earn a Level 2 NVQ in surface repair, something that will enhance their CV for life and ensure their skills are the best in the industry. By offering the qualification, Plastic Surgeon becomes the only company to offer the correct qualification that reflects the work done on site, and the only repair company to be an accredited NVQ centre.

Recent industry changes mean that to apply for a Construction Skills Certificate Scheme (CSCS) card – something required by major contractors in the construction industry – workers must have a relevant qualification, with the new NVQ meeting those requirements. Gary Danson, Operations Director at Plastic Surgeon, commented: “We developed a specifically designed NVQ programme, which covers in depth surface repair skills and the requisite knowledge to rectify complex damage to a range of surfaces. Claire is a great example of how we see the course benefitting our finishers. As one of our most experienced employees, Claire’s ability as a repair specialist was never in doubt – but she can now benefit from official recognition and an industry standard qualification.” 

To offer an NVQ, Plastic Surgeon had to go through extensive requirements and preconditions to gain official accreditation, which required considerable effort to attain. Once this was achieved, the company then needed to provide the relevant course content as well as establishing assessors. 80 of Plastic Surgeon’s current finishers were initially enrolled in the scheme, with 22 having now qualified. A further 100 are set to join them over the coming months, while new recruits will also benefit from the NVQ, attaining it as part of their initial job training which can span several months.

Having become aware of the launch of Plastic Surgeon’s NVQ, Mel Stride MP, Member of Parliament for Central Devon, wrote a letter to the firm saying that he was “delighted” to hear about its implementation, before adding: “This is a fantastic initiative to develop and promote the skills of your staff.” Gary Danson commented further: “As the first in the industry to provide the qualification, we’ve helped to enhance our standing as an employer, while also improving recognition for Plastic Surgeon across the wider industry. We’re delighted that the first of our finishers have already completed the course requirements, and we’re looking forward to the next phase of learners engaging with the process.”

Plastic Surgeon has seen rapidly rising demand for its specialised services, which cover a range of industries and has over 180 directly employed repair specialists – or Finishers – across its seven UK regions, all trained in a variety of skills.

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