Welcome to my first monthly training blog on BAL’s fantastic new website – designed to give trainee fixers and college tutors comprehensive support and tools.
Firstly, let me introduce myself. I’m Dave Rowley, Training Manager at BAL with responsibility for internal training at our new Innovation and Technology Centre and supporting training at colleges across the country.
I have more than 23 years’ experience in tiling, having joined the industry upon leaving school and gaining a City & Guilds Advanced Craft qualification through an apprenticeship at Hamil Tiles.
I joined BAL in 1992, and have been training manager since 2000. I’m also Chairman of the TTA Supply Chain Committee, an active member of the TTA Fixer Training Committee and a Lead Judge for Wall and Floor Tiling for SkillBuild – the national construction skills competition.
Training is extremely important to me, as I believe it is key to the continued success of the tiling industry. For me it is crucial to ensure that workmanship remains at a high level throughout the tiling industry – and that tile fixers, tutors, tiling contractors, specifiers and tile retailers have up-to-date product knowledge and technical expertise to be able to adapt to changing trends, tile materials, tile fixing products, backgrounds and environments.
If bad practices start to happen, this will result in tiles not being used and other materials being specified instead resulting in the loss of work for all in the industry.
At BAL we have invested significantly in training – especially with the development of our new Innovation and Technology Centre (ITC). Opened in March 2015, our ITC leads the field in training and innovation – providing a purpose built facility including a state-of-the art 40-seat demonstration auditorium, practical training bays, meeting rooms and more.
We encourage tutors to bring their students down to the facility in Stoke-on-Trent to take part in bespoke hands-on wall and floor tiling courses, visit our factory and tour our research and Quality Control laboratories.
As well as in-house support, we can also bring training to your college through our extensive nationwide network of Product Support Technicians.
Supporting our training structure is this fantastic new online digital resource where tutors and students can access a range of training guides, literature and point of sale material.
What’s more, we’re giving students the chance to get on the jobs ladder with our fantastic, innovative Apprenticeship Tool connecting students looking for apprenticeships with tiling contractors searching for apprentices. Simply post your details upload your CV and for potential employees to view.
Regularly updated with fresh content and information, we hope this website will become your first port of call when looking for wall and floor tiling training information. So get exploring today, and please let us know your thoughts!
I will focus on discussing the latest trends and hot topics in training in my blog, but if you have any topics you think would be good to discuss, please let us know using the below contact form.
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