Case Studies


Alice Slennett  – Business Administration Level 3

Learner with Assessor
L-R: Marcia, Alice & Sarah

Alice works in the Patient Experience Team at Abertawe Bro Morganwg University Health Board which covers all hospitals across Bridgend, Neath Port Talbot and Swansea. One of the responsibilities of the Patient Experience Team is processing and monitoring all feedback received from patients who have received treatment from the Health Board. It is a small but very busy office environment.

Alice started the Level 3 Diploma in Business Administration after discussion with her manager. Marcia Buchanan, Patient Experience Facilitator, felt that the NVQ was a good fit for the culture of the Health Board due to the work based nature of the qualification.

The expected length of time for this qualification is 15 months but Alice was able to complete it in 6 months with support from Sarah Williams, her assessor, from Bridgend College. Alice says, “If it wasn’t for Sarah, I may not have achieved my NVQ.”

Since completing her qualification, Alice has been acting as a mentor to a new team member to pass on her skills.



G.E. Aviation – Assessing Competence in the Work Environment

Louise Burnell, GE

As part of the Upskiling@Work Project, Coleg y Cymoedd have been working with G.E. Aviation to enhance the skills of their workforce with an Assessing qualification which will help support and develop new employees.

Louise Burnell, Training and Development Manager, talks about how Upskilling their workforce is helping the company.

“We realise the importance of investing in our employees. In such a regulated and quality focused industry it is critical to stay on top of industry changes and standards. As such, it is important for our workforce to have up to date knowledge and high levels of skill.”

“The Assessor Award through Upskilling@Work at Coleg y Cymoedd provides us with a well delivered qualification and will also deliver well trained assessors both in our office and shop floor teams.”



James Edwards – ABC Level 3 Diploma in Fabrication & Welding Practice

James joined Guardian Global, based in Pyle, 7 years ago as a workshop assistant.  He tried his hand at welding and soon found that he had a natural flair for it. There was no welder employed at the time so James learnt by doing hands-on work and self-teaching from YouTube videos. Guardian Global soon invited external work in which increased the welding demand. This meant that James needed to attend college to become qualified to carry out the work.  His employer was happy to support him and contacted the Bridgend Upskilling@Work Team who were more than happy to enrol him on to a course. He enrolled on a course at our Bridgend campus and completed his ABC Level 3 Diploma in Fabrication & Welding Practice.

James was an excellent NVQ student and completed the Fabrication and Welding Level 3 Diploma course within 5 months of starting it. He said that he was only able to complete the NVQ in such a short space of time because of the support he received from his assessor, Les, and also due to the excellent communication skills they shared.

Since undertaking the NVQ James has gained more of an insight into the practical side of fabrication and welding and it has also helped him to realise how much he already knows. This endorsement of his skills has really increased James’ self-belief and confidence.   His company has also given him a pay rise for his achievement of completing the course.



GS Yuasa Battery Manufacturing UK Ltd – ILM Level 2 Award in Leadership and Team Skills

GS Yuasa Battery Manufacturing UK Ltd is one of the world’s leading battery manufacturers and have their Wales operations based in Ebbw Vale.
Richard Thomas, Professional Trainer, has a background in manufacturing and was given the task to tailor a training programme for Cell Leader and Coordinator level.
A group of 16 employees were split into two groups over eight days of training to complete ILM Level 2 Award in Leadership and Team Skills. The qualification was completed within 9 months. This allowed for the least disruption to day to day operations.

All 16 achieved accreditation. The skills gained included how to support and motivate individuals and the planning and delegation of work to increase productivity in a manufacturing environment.
One of the participants, David Harris reported that “the tutor was excellent in his delivery of the course material. I have used many of the methods shown over the duration of the course in my role”.

Scott Griffiths, Head of Production, reported that “it has been a pleasure working with Coleg Gwent Business to provide an opportunity for a front line supervision training programme. The support provided has been outstanding with very positive feedback from employees on the course”.

Matthew Welsher, Upskilling@Work Coordinator for Coleg Gwent added “we’re really delighted to have helped this organisation access Upskilling@Work, a funded operation supported by the European Social Fund through the Welsh Government. It has enhanced skills in the workplace and provided an accredited qualification to those involved.”


Tenneco Walker – Welding

Tenneco have been working with the Upskilling@Work project since May 2017 to help their employees gain accredited training in Welding. Ian & Dagmara were part of the first cohort.

Participant Photo - Tenneco
L-R: Karl George (Team Leader), Dagmara, Ian, Dean Thomas (Team Leader) & Assessor Terry Crump from The College Merthyr Tydfil.

Ian Roberts had experience of a variety of roles, including plumbing and care work, prior to joining Tenneco. Although he had welded before, he had no formal qualifications in that area.

Dagmara Zaradkiewicz moved to the UK from Poland in 2006 and worked in different factories before starting work at Tenneco as a robot machine loader on a temporary contract. She secured a permanent contract whilst working towards her qualification.

Ian & Dagmara were among the first to complete their Level 1 Award in TIG Welding and have been a great example for others in Tenneco. This has been recognised by the company and since achieving their qualification, both have been promoted to Section Support Leader. Terry Crump, assessor from The College Merthyr Tydfil, has enjoyed working with Tenneco and was proud to be able to present Ian & Dagmara with their certificates.

Steve Burrows – ILM Level 5

Steve works for National Museum Wales as Head of Historic Properties. He completed ILM Level 5 with Cardiff and Vale College. Steve says that he acts with more confidence since completing the course.

We asked Steve how the qualification has benefited the company:

I am clearer about my role as a line manager and more focused in its delivery. The team I manage know what is expected of them and how their work will be measured. I believe we have become more effective as a result. I use the lessons learnt from it very regularly to help me make better and more justifiable decisions.


Hannah Davies – Level 3 NVQ Customer Service

Hannah secured a new role focussing on improving Customer Experience for Malmaison hotels since completing her course with Upskilling@Work.

Hannah talks about how the style of delivery helped her:

Doing is always a better way of learning for me than just being told and so – with the help of my tutor- I was able to apply the lessons I learnt to the practices I was carrying out. I was able to analyse my actions and how they may have an impact on the customer journey and –in turn- company’s reputation and performance.


Ángela Álvarez Fabregat – Level 3 NVQ Customer Service

Ángela works as a Customer Experience Improvement Analyst for the International Baccalaureate Organisation in Cardiff. A qualification in Customer Service has helped them to consolidate their existing knowledge and find new ways of working, “Completing this qualification has helped me not only to audit the work I do but also identify areas where there is room to improve”.

Ángela enjoyed the flexibility of being able to complete the qualification in work with support from Michelle, Cardiff and Vale College’s Assessor “I didn’t have to travel and also I could access any resources available very easily. Michelle was always available for any questions, responding in a very timely manner. It was a pleasure to have her as my Assessor as I could raise any issue I had. The methodology used made me be very confident in my day to day work.”