Fleets seizing opportunity to enhance skills in lockdown, reports AFP
Fleet take-up of training from the Association of Fleet Professionals (AFP) has risen 20% during lockdown, with many decision-makers starting new fleet courses.
The AFP, formed in March from the merger of ACFO and ICFM, said the rise was the result of fleet decision-makers, including those on furlough, using the additional time currently available to them as an opportunity to improve their skills and qualifications, as well as to capitalise on increased availability of online content from the organisation’s Training Academy.
Peter Eldridge, director at the AFP, said it was easy to understand why there had been a marked upturn in training.
“If you have been furloughed or the current crisis means you have more free time at work, then this is an appropriate moment to upgrade your skills,” he explained.
“This has coincided with a point in time when recent investment by the AFP means that we have been able to introduce more online content to complement our classroom-based activity, and that has fortunately opened up our courses to a much wider audience during lockdown.”
The AFP’s training infrastructure is based on ICFM’s well-established programmes and includes the AFP/ICFM Introductory Programme and the Intermediate Programme, both of which can be completed as online distance learning courses, backed by online tutor support, enabling training during lockdown.
While the top-level Advanced Programme is normally only available through a face-to-face tutor-based approach, a trial is now being held to see if a more blended approach including online content is possible, which will conclude in June.
Eldridge continued: “The new activity that we have seen has occurred across all levels of expertise and there has also been a marked increase in those already taking courses completing job-based assignments which are part of their qualifications.
“While it is difficult to identify positives for the fleet industry or its professionals in what has happened during the coronavirus crisis, it is pleasing to see that so many people have seized the opportunity to make productive used of their time and enhance their skills and qualifications.”