Calling all L&D professionals, and/or university CPD/language centre people! Long, sorry...

(2 Posts)
Lookingtoprogress Wed 05-Feb-14 20:21:58

Okay, I am at something of a crossroads career-wise and could do with some advice. I returned to work recently after a few months on mat leave with DC2 (now 10 months). I also have a 2.6 year old DC. I'm ready to refocus on progressing my career, which is something I haven't felt able to do for the last 3 years due to mat leave etc.

I work for a consultancy in the field of language/cultural training. I've been there 7 years, before that I was an english teacher for 6 years, working in europe, asia and london. I have a degree, a CELTA and a DELTA (basic + higher level english teaching quals)

My current role is recruitment and development manager. I am responsible for sourcing and interviewing trainers. I am also responsible for developing and managing our trainer development programme (for around 120 employees). This involves assessing our trainers' current skillset, designing internal training sessions around any skills gap, involving colleagues in the delivery of training and then developing/managing an appraisal system which will follow up on trainer performance and give them targets to work on (with our supprt) for the coming year. We have no HR/L&D people so this is all uncharted territory for us - and I'm in charge of it!

Previously my role (at the same company) was client relationship manager. I had a list of clients (mostly large organisations, banks, central govt agencies etc), and I was in charge of designing their lang/cultural training programmes, organising, doing all the admin etc. Lots of liaising with HR/L&D contacts etc. I also designed bespoke training courses.

The company I work for is a small business. My boss is the owner of the company. So while my role can develop and change according to client demands, there is little scope for promotion. The industry is full of similar companies - all smallish - and I think my employer is probably the most flexible and best when it comes to pay. So if I want to move on it needs to be in one of two directions I think.

1. Learning + development in a larger company, in a different industry. I suspect I'd need to do a CIPD qualification to get into this. I have no idea what other kind of experience I'd need.

2. Language centre/short course centre (e.g.business courses) in a university setting - business development/centre manager type role.
I think I'd need to do an MA, probably in linguistics/education, and I'd probably need to improve my foreign language skills.

My work experience probably lends itself slightly better to a language centre. But jobs are scarcer and less well paid I think. I'd be interested in either although I'm leaning towards L & D. I enjoy designing training courses, I really enjoy organising things and managing projects for clients and I'm good at the relationship management side of that - managing expectations, solving problems, coming up with new ideas to help clients address business needs. I think I have lots of transferable skills but my market knowledge is very industry-specific.

So anyone working in either setting have any advice for me? If I wanted to move into L & D what CIPD qual would be best at an entry level? What kind of roles would I need to look at to get started (sadly I'm a 36 year old not a bright young graduate)?

And anyone working in a university setting, business development/ language centre/professional courses - similar questions really. What quals might I need, what sort of roles might I need to look at to get a foot in the door?

And, clutching at straws, is the experience I have sufficient to look at slightly more senior roles? I'm not too keen to apply for junior admin type things unless i've got no chance of getting into these industries any other way.

Beckydewinter Fri 21-Feb-14 03:33:11

If you're interested in University Language Centres you'd probably need to get some EAP (English for Academic Purposes) experience. Most Universities are recruiting now for their summer Pre-sessionals which are usually the way in (I'm assuming you don't have that kind of experience already).You're already qualified even without an MA so I don't think you'd have problems getting work. The BALEAP website
gives a good sense of what's on offer:

http://www.baleap.org.uk/home/

Pre- sessionals tend to be reasonably paid
(£30-35,000 pro rata often with free/ subsidised accommodation in University halls) but they are
temporary and seasonal so probably not what you have in mind.

Permanent jobs are less common but do come up though you may find not having an MA a disadvantage. Lots of management opportunities once you get your foot in the door...

I've worked in the field for 10 years and love it so happy to answer any more questions if you have themsmile

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