The University of Brighton Business School won the subsequent tender. Present at the pitch were the university staff who would be delivering the course.
What the regulator wanted from the course was to ensure a comprehensive understanding of key corporate issues such as:
- corporate decision making
- funding and accounting
All this has been achieved, in addition to the obvious networking benefits and improved interpersonal skills of staff.
The Business School team mapped potential content for the course against the regulator's competency framework. The resulting business skills programme was a careful balance between academic theory and business like training, which could be implemented "back at the desk". The course took around nine months to design and develop, and the first cohort ran in September 2006.
The Pensions Regulator had deliberately set out to make the course award-bearing to increase its value to staff, so they would be able to use the credits towards other degree or masters-level courses.
The resulting graduate certificate has the same checks in place as any academic course at the university would, with a course board attended by student representatives, the course leader and head of school, Professor Aidan Berry.
We were impressed that the University of Brighton brought in the people who would actually be doing the teaching, as well as helping us design the course.
Corporate Development Adviser at the Pensions Regulator, Fiona McBride