In January 2022 GQA Qualifications celebrated its twentieth anniversary. A part of the activities to mark the event is a series of interviews with the directors of the organisation. Here we talk to Anda Gregory of the GGF who sits on the GQA board as a FENSA representative.
What does being a Director of GQA mean to you?
I’ve always had a passion for developing people. Moving into the glass and glazing industry a few years ago, I quickly became acutely aware of the skills shortage facing our industry and believe we all need to do our bit to help improve the situation. GQA’s work – not just in the glass and glazing sector – is really important to give people who are new to the industry a way to learn and receive a qualification that will stay with them for life. GQA is helping people to progress their careers and raise standards. I’m proud to be part of that through my directorship with the organisation.
What do you think are the strengths of GQA?
The real strength of GQA is in its people, who are experienced, passionate and dedicated to raising standards. GQA is very focused on what it does in being an awarding body and this focus enables it to provide a great service.
What does your experience bring to the table?
I’ve worked across a range of different sectors over the years, which brings different perspectives to my contribution at Board meetings, as well as having a good understanding of what’s happening in the world of glass and glazing through my day job at the Glass & Glazing Federation. My roles over the years have been quite wide-ranging from starting off my career as a Chartered Accountant to strategy and general management, so I have an unusual blend of skills and experience that I can draw on at Board meetings. I am also a non-executive director at a couple of other not-for-profit organisations, which facilitates useful parallels when making decisions.
What changes have you seen in GQA over the past twenty years you’d like to highlight?
As a relative newcomer to the industry and GQA, I’m probably not best placed to answer this one, but it’s clear that GQA is adaptable as a business and has developed over time to meet new needs for the various industries it operates in. GQA has expanded over the years, but not at the expense of quality of service delivery.
How important do you feel qualifications and training are?
Very! Companies can’t operate effectively without proper training. Qualifications are a way to legitimise training and give the trainee something that stays with them for the rest of their lives to prove they’ve met a certain standard of competence and are fit to do their job. Well-trained employees and sub-contractors mean that work is far more likely to be done right first time. This reduces the need for remedial work, lowers levels of customer complaints, increases positive word of mouth recommendations, and improves a company’s profitability – who wouldn’t want that?
Where do you see GQA heading in the future?
GQA will continue listening to the needs of the employers in the industries it operates in and will develop and deliver fit-for-purpose qualifications and training courses to ensure a well-trained workforce. It will also continue investing to help more widely with the skills shortage through initiatives such as Building Our Skills and invest in more practical training centres around the UK to give people the opportunity to receive good quality hands-on training.
For more information about GQA and the vast range of industry relevant qualifications it offers please visit www.gqaqualifications.com