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Workplace union learning advisors

What is a workplace union learning advisor?

NUJ learning advisors (ULAs) play a key role in bringing learning and career development opportunities to NUJ members in the workplace.

In a quickly changing industry, for example, technological advances are having an on-going impact on the way in which we work. The need to adapt skills and acquire new skills to keep up with demand is crucial for employability and to ensure on-going career success.

Since 2003, NUJ learning advisors have been entitled to paid time off to train or attend to their duties in workplaces where the NUJ is recognised. They are helping to make a real difference to the development and provision of workplace learning.

Examples of ULA involvement might include:

  • Analysing and assessing learning or training needs of NUJ members, including those related to industry skills, to communication and management proficiency and to members’ other learning interests not directly related to their current employment.
  • Providing information and advice about learning or training matters and signposting members to learning and training facilities.
  • Arranging learning and training, including working with employers to organise in-house training where appropriate and liaising with local and national training providers to develop training to meet identified needs or interests.
  • Promoting the value of learning and training, including using employers’ in-house communications vehicles (for example, staff newsletters and the intranet), NUJ chapels’ communications and by organising special events when necessary.
  • Learning from best practice regionally and nationally by, for example, attending local and national ULR forums, workshops and conferences.
Why we need workplace learning advisors

ULAs play an essential part in helping to create and support learning opportunities and skills development in the workplace.

We need learning advisors to help:

  • keep our members informed of skill changes in the industry
  • raise awareness of the need for skills development
  • ensure that members are as fully equipped with as many skills as possible
  • work with employers to develop learning opportunities
  • help provide information, advice and guidance (IAG)
  • feed information and advice back to the NUJ about trends, developments and changing requirements.

While some members already participate in learning, there are many who would benefit from learning opportunities, such as training courses and workshops, if they could gain access to them.

The NUJ is continuing to make significant progress in improving skills development opportunities at work. With the help of our learning advisors, we are playing a vital role in promoting and providing lifelong learning.

Why should I become a Workplace Learning Advisor?

There are many excellent reasons to get active where learning is concerned. You should consider becoming a learning advisor if:

  • you are interested in your own and your colleagues’ skills and career development
  • you want to influence how staff training and career development are improved in your workplace
  • you want to be a part of the drive towards career development and training
  • you want to become more involved in NUJ activity
  • you would like new ways to network with your colleagues and other union members
  • you would like to learn more about skills development and how to access opportunities.

Promoting and facilitating learning opportunities is a key element of the NUJ’s strategy to support and assist its members.

The NUJ has already helped thousands of members to acquire new skills as well as raising awareness of the need for skills development throughout the industry.

With the help of learning advisors, we can continue to make a real difference to improving the career and personal development opportunities of our members.

Get started

If you want to become a learning advisor, you’ll get the right training and plenty of on-going support from the NUJ.

What support will i get as a workplace learning advisor?

Comprehensive training

The first thing we will do is to train you. Through our links with the TUC, we have specifically designed an NUJ Learning Advisor course.

The course consists of a half-day introductory workshop, which, as well as running through course content, allows would-be learning advisors to network with other members.

This is followed by several on-line modules, which participants can complete at their own convenience and pace (tutor and chat room support is provided).

Each course is held on demand at our head office in London and throughout the UK. If you would like to train to become a learning advisor, please use the contact details below to find out more.

Once you’ve completed the initial training, we’ll provide additional training depending on your needs. For example, we run learning advisor workshops in negotiation and mapping.

The NUJ also provides you with information, advice and guidance (IAG) on an on-going basis.

Events and networking

Once you have completed the basic level of training, you will be invited to ULR events and on-line forums via this website.

Branch meetings and committees

Trainers can attend branch meetings and committees throughout the UK to provide IAG and raise awareness on the need for lifelong learning.

Sessions can be tailored to audience needs and vary from brief 15-minute Q & A slots to more comprehensive presentations.

Workshops for workplace learning advisors

We tailor training to the needs of our learning advisors. Our research shows that people require varied methods of learning depending on a number of factors from individual learning preference to convenience.

This is why we run a blended learning programme for NUJ learning advisors, which includes a range of workshops. These provide participants with the opportunity to work through practical situations that arise as part of the learning advisors role and have their questions answered on the spot.

The workshops also act as a useful networking forum for learning advisors to meet and discuss ideas and skills development issues. Workshops include:

Introductory training for learning advisors

If you want to become a learning advisor, we hold a half-day workshop as an introduction to our on-line course.

We also run one-day sessions around the UK with follow up sessions where necessary.

Advanced training

We run a demand-led course on negotiating skills for learning advisors whose roles include meeting with employers to improve training opportunities.

General workshops

We hold workshops that relate to topical issues that effect learning opportunities and skills development. We also listen to the requirements of our learning advisors and develop workshops from their feedback.

For more information

If you would like to attend a workshop or find out more about the role of an NUJ ULA, please contact NUJ Training - training@nuj.org.uk